PORSCHE HISTORY: Dr Ferdinand Porsche, (1875~1951) developed a reputation very early in life as an Automotive Designer. Amazingly the first car designed by Dr Porsche was a Lohner-Porsche Hybrid Car which incorporated a petrol engine/dynamo charging batteries which in turn powered an electric motor in each wheel hub. Dr Porsche's son Ferry, (1909~1998) went on to develop the world famous 356 cars.
I have developed my 'Porsche History' pages specifically covering the years 1893~1948, this period witnessed the evolving brilliance of Ferdinand Porsche as a Designer and his son Ferry as an equally revolutionary designer. I have utilised limited monochrome images from Porsche Archives to support my colour imagery taken at the Porsche Museum in 2009.
1893: At eighteen years of age, Ferdinand Porsche begins employment with an Electrical Company, Bela Egger & Co., Vienna, Austria.
1897: Ferdinand Porsche designs the 'wheel hub electric motor' and is hired by the Lohner Imperial and Royal Court Coach Factory, Vienna, Austria.
1900~1905: WHEEL HUB ELECTRIC MOTOR: At the age of 24, Ferdinand Porsche created a sensation at the annual Paris World Fair, a vehicle built under contract with the Lohner Imperial and Royal Court Coach Factory was displayed incorporating Ferdinand's 'wheel hub electric motors'. Numerous versions of the car known as the 'Lohner-Porsche Mixte' were developed including front wheel drive, four wheel drive, two wheel drive racing versions and fully enclosed passenger vehicles.
All the Mixte's incorporated a petrol engine which powered a dynamo, the dynamo's in turn generated electricity which powered the wheel hub electric motors. The concept was clearly a forerunner to modern Hybrid Vehicle technology. Sadly by 1906 the cost implications to manufacture the Mixte were deemed uncompetitive as compared to exclusively ICE powered vehicles.
In 1904, Ferdinand's wife Aloisia gave birth to their daughter, Louise Porsche, (1904~1999).
1906: Ferdinand accepts the position of Technical Director at Austro-Daimler, Wiener Neustadt.
1909: Ferdinand's wife gave birth to their son, Ferdinand (Ferry) Anton Ernst Porsche, (1909~1998). I will use the name Ferry Porsche hereinafter when referring to Ferdinand's son.
1910: Ferdinand wins the third Prince Heinrich Tour, (the precursor to the German Grand Prix), in an 85PS 27/80 car.
1912: AIRCRAFT ENGINE: In the years before World War 1, the Austrian Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft (Austro-Daimler) payed homage to the enthusiasm of Ferdinand Porsche for airplanes by convening an Aviation Day in his honour at Wiener Neustadt, Ferdinand received the highest recommendations at the event. Ferdinand as the Companies Chief Engineer was in charge of developing a wide range of aircraft engines, an undertaking continued many decades later by Porsche KG.
1912: FIRE TRUCK: Ferdinand Porsche developed an early interest in fire trucks. As Chief Engineer for Austro-Daimler he developed a vehicle for the companies own fire crew which for the first time incorporated personnel transport, water pumping and hoses all on the one emergency vehicle. The fire truck depicted was used for 20 years by Austro-Daimler, then served as a fire truck for a further 36 years in Austria's Burgenland.
1917: HONORARY DOCTORATE: Ferdinand Porsche was awarded an honorary doctorate from the Vienna University of Technology for his achievements in aeronautics. Ferdinand's interest in aviation also led to development of observation planes and continued co-operation with the military of the day led to Austro-Daimler developing military motor vehicles.
Dr Ferdinand Porsche was named the General Director of Austro-Daimler.
1922: AUSTRO-DAIMLER 'SASCHA': Considered the catalyst for launching Dr Ferdinand Porsche's motor sport tradition. The 'Sascha' was entered in the 1922 Targa Florio road race of Sicily and achieved first and second place in it's class. The vehicle, originally developed as a precursor of a production four-seater incorporated a light weight of 598kg which offered nimble handling and established in Ferdinand's mind the principle of optimizing the power to weight ratio of a vehicle.
The vehicle was named after the sponsor of the project, Industrialist Count Alexander 'Sascha' Kolowrat. Ultimately the vehicle achieved a total of forty three racing victories.
1923: Dr Ferdinand Porsche becomes the Technical Director and board member of the Daimler Motoren Gesellschaft headquarters, Stuttgart.
1924: HONORARY DOCTORATE: Dr Ferdinand Porsche receives another honorary doctorate, this time from the Stuttgart Technical University.
1929: Dr Ferdinand Porsche becomes Technical Director at Steyr Worke AG in Steyr, Austria.
1931: PORSCHE DESIGN OFFICE: Dr Ferdinand Porsche establishes a Design Office in Stuttgart. Porsche design the Type 7 mid size sedan for the car maker Wanderer.
MORE PORSCHE HISTORY: Into the troublesome thirties and post war, the Porsche name finally appeared on their own car, please continue...
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