The differences between a standard SCGC model and its PW sibling only involve a few things, such as different and less frequent binding on the PW, forward shifted bracing on the PW and tapered vs. scalloped bracing, different finish (gloss vs. matte) on the back of the neck. Other luthier’s differences between their standard model and economy model usually have more differences.
I don’t know if the main purpose of the PW was to offer a less expensive guitar, although that no doubt was a factor. The difference in price between a standard and PW still exists and I suspect the relative percentage difference is about the same.
Keep in mind that the base prices for all SCGC guitars have increased quite a bit since the PW was introduced over 10 years ago.
In addition, there were not many, if any, customized PWs in those early years since it was introduced. Now, customized PWs are quite common, with attendant higher prices.