I reckon we visit Germany at least twice a year, if not for a motorshow then surely for a motorsports event of sorts. The country that gave us Adidas, Bratwurst, SMS text-messaging and ballistic missiles also gave us many a renowned automotive marque, none more yearned for and appreciated than Porsche. The best way for one to appreciate the present, is to first appreciate the past. Welcome, to the Porsche Museum!
Construction of the museum began in October 2005 and took precisely three years and two months to complete, officially opening its doors to the public on the 31st of January 2009. The museum itself is a work of architectural excellence, both on the inside and out.
Designed by Austrian based Delugan Meissl Associated Architects, the architecture reflects Porsche’s bold and dynamic philosophy, something everyone who has ever driven a Porsche can attest to.
There are over 80 vehicles on display at the museum, from iconic vintages such as the 356 and 550 to the ultra-modern 991 and 918. Also in abundance are competition-winning race cars such as the 1998 Le Mans champion Porsche 911 GT1 98.
Alongside the many cars are smaller exhibits and displays, showcasing up-close-and-personal the many technological innovations, engineering feats and of course, trophy cases that embodies the spirit that is Porsche.
The route I took was the chronological one, where visitors got a chance to see and understand the company’s history from its very first start with Ferdinand Porsche; how the company has grown and developed, before moving on to the present day and finally culminating at the end where the future is predicted.
Touted as a living automobile museum, the Porsche Museum is also well known for many special exhibitions, with many exhibits changing regularly, giving visitors a fresh perspective on the company and allowing them to discover something new on their next visit.
Unlike most museums that have heavily guarded sections where art and history is restored, the Porsche Museum has a dedicated museum workshop where master craftsmen, mechanics and leatherworkers work in full view.
Enjoy the photos, but if you are an automotive enthusiast like me, then this is definitely one item you should mark onto your bucket-list! (For more information, click here.)
Meet the Egger-Lohner-Elektromobil Modell C.2 Phaeton. This model which resembles an old horse-drawn carriage is actually a representation of the world’s very first Porsche construction. It was 1898 when Ferdinand Porsche himself implants an electric motor to the chassis, complete with front-axle steering. A 550kg battery in the rear helps produce three to five horsepower, with a top speed of up to 25km/h and a range of six hours driving time. The very model here was very likely the actual test vehicle used, and has never been restored since it was decommissioned in 1902.
Originally designed for Austro-Daimler, the ADS R ‘Sascha’ was the car that started the Porsche motorsport tradition, at the Targa Florio road race in Sicilly. In the 1922 race, this lightweight car, tipping the scales at only 598kg, won first and second in its class, and continued to bring a total of 43 racing victories. A racing enthusiast himself, Ferdinand Porsche established the fundamental principle of optimising power-to-weight ratio, a core attribute to all subsequent Porsche sports cars till this very day.
Named Body Typ 64, this streamlined aluminum sports car is the forefather of all Porsches, unassuming as its name is. The car exhibits trendsetting concepts that will eventually serve as a fundamental DNA for all Porsche sports cars. It was capable of speeds of up to 130km/h, and was one of Ferdinand Porsche’s often used cars. His love and passion for this car is further demonstrated by the fact that after the war, the Porsche family name was lettered onto this vehicle. The first!
It was roughly between 1932 to 1934 when Ferdinand Porsche first presented his ‘Plan Concerning the Construction of a German People’s Car’ to the Third Reich, which was eventually accepted and adopted, becoming the first ‘Volkswagen’ or ‘People’s Car’. By 1950, over 100,000 units like this example here were sold. Known more affectionately as the Beetle, it is the longest-running and most-manufactured car based on a single platform ever made, with over 21.5 million units produced!