Porsche starts repairing batteries on the workshop floor

Porsche is sticking to its ‘Road-to-X’ strategy, whereby the manufacturer believes that by 2025 half of all new Porsches will be electric, and by 2030 that figure will be 80%. As more electric vehicles leave the showroom, the need to prepare the workshops for these vehicles also increases.

Contrary to what is often claimed, an EV is not maintenance-free. Even though the service requirement is somewhat 30% lower, other technologies and elements require service and repair. Therefore, Porsche also wants to make a difference in EV aftersales.

Service needs are changing

“Our dealers are our signposts and our brand ambassadors to our customers,” states Daniel Schukraft, vice president of aftersales and customer care at Porsche. This is why the dealers must be able to carry out exact diagnoses and repairs on the vehicles’ high-voltage systems, including the battery.

A Taycan contains a battery pack with 28 to 33 modules, depending on the model. The workshops must have the skills to open a battery and repair or replace modules or other elements at a component level. This provides a better service and limits the related costs for the customer.

Accurate diagnosis

Since March 2022, Porsche has started to roll out the necessary diagnostic equipment to the Porsche Centres. High-voltage batteries rarely fail in electric vehicles, but if they do, highly trained technicians are a must. Battery repairs do not necessarily have to be carried out in every garage.

There will be local ‘high voltage hubs’ where vehicles with specific problems will be transported from the local dealer. Sometimes specialists will also come to the regional workshop to solve a problem on the spot. Porsche has three levels of EV technicians: qualified electricians, high-voltage technicians, and high-voltage experts.

The latter are trained at Porsche and later move on to the high-voltage hubs. By physically moving a defective vehicle when necessary or sending an expert to the car in a local workshop, an accurate diagnosis is the aim, followed by an efficient repair.

Different approach

This approach differs fundamentally from what, for example, Renault did until now with its ZE models. Most Renault garages carry out servicing on electric models and are assisted by an online ‘guided diagnosis’ tool. Unfortunately, this can lead to poor diagnostics, the needless replacement of (expensive) modules resulting in expensive repair costs, and, in the end, dissatisfied customers.

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