Malcolm Flynn | May 8, 2012

Porsche’s on-again/off-again sub-Boxster sports car could merely be waiting in line behind other future models, according to a recent report.

US magazine Automobile reports that the delay is not due to the cancellation of Volkswagen's BlueSport and Audi R4 projects, but merely to give Porsche some breathing space amid its many future launches.

These include the upcoming Macan SUV, new 911 variants, 918 supercar, the next Panamera and, if recent reports are to be believed, the so-called 960 Ferrari fighter.

"We need to concentrate on our cash-cows before entering a new segment where profit margins are notoriously critical," an unnamed Porsche insider was quoted by the magazine.

The small two-seater project, believed to be known as ‘project 551’, is expected to be named after the classic 1950s 550 model, made famous as the car in which James Dean lost his life in 1955.

Yet to be unveiled even in concept form, the car is expected to bypass the BlueSport concept's platform in favour of the Volkswagen Group's (still to be announced) MSB-M mid-engined platform, powered by a sub-2.0 litre flat four engine.

Project 551 is expected to launch with an open-top bodystyle, with a coupe version to follow later.

The report's source also hinted at a possible launch window between 2016 and 2018, after initial expectations of a 2014 appearance.

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