THE PORSCHE MUSEUM:
The mention of the name instantly brings to mind the '911', Le
Mans, performance, reliability, it's all there in a Porsche. I visited the
Porsche Museum in 2009, just days before the 100th anniversary celebrations of
Ferry Porsche's birth, I learned a great deal more about the marque and the
marvellous history of all things Porsche. The following pages cover records of
my visit and I hope they are of interest...
Please click on the heading or associated image to be taken to
the dedicated page covering the subject.....
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. Cars were developed with 2WD and 4WD
Dr Porsche's son Ferry, (1909~1998) went on to develop
the world famous 356 cars.
The 'clickable' image is the incredible 'electric wheel
hub motor' which formed part of various hybrid cars developed
by Ferdinand Porsche, circa 1900~1905.
The first true Porsche Coupe, the 356 developed by
Ferry Porsche in 1948 was powered by the readily available four cylinder
Volkswagen Beetle engine but the body was very different, a tubular space
frame chassis with an aluminium body. Ferry had visions of a car that would
handle, brake and hold the road well and the 356 due to it's light weight
offered many of these features.
The 'clickable' image is the 10,000th Porsche 356A
produced, this car was entered in the Mille Miglia and was a Porsche Race
Managers personal car.
The Porsche 911, clearly the most famous of all
Porsches was actually designed by Ferry's son Butzi Porsche and the first
prototype 911 was actually coded as a 901, the first public viewing of the
901 was in 1963. The most significant performance change compared to the 356
was the inclusion of a flat six engine.
An enormous array of variations to the 911 have included
increased displacement, turbo charging and four wheel drive derivatives.
The 'clickable' image is a 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RSR
'Martini Racing' .
Introduced in 1968, the 908 was powered by a flat eight cylinder engine and
incredibly the car kept winning and placing for some twelve years of
competition. Porsche entered the 908 in the 1968 Nurburgring 1000km race, the
car in the hands of Jo Siffert and Vic Elford took the chequered and second
place was taken by another 908 in the capable hands of Hans Hermann and Rolf
The 'clickable' image is a 1969 Porsche 908 LH 'Long
The Porsche 917, developed by Porsche for the Le Mans
24 Hour race dominated the event in 1970~71, the cars had 4.5 litre flat
twelve engines. After that success similar cars were entered in the American
CanAm Series, sans roof, but gaining twin turbo chargers, allowing the
engines to produce some 1,115PS, giving the cars a top speed over 400kph,
with this performance Porsche 917's dominated the CanAm Series throughout 1972~73.
The 'clickable' image is a Porsche 917 LH 'Martini Racing
Porsche', 'Long Tail'.
The Porsche 935, was production based and was most
suited to endurance racing. In 1976 at Mugello, drivers Jacki Ickx and
Jochen Mass took the overall victory and the Porsche 935 took the 1976
Manufacturer's World Championship. Subsequent to the 935 Porsche developed
the 935/78 which was the first Porsche to race with water cooled cylinder
heads, the car was nicknamed 'Moby Dick'.
The 'clickable' image is the Porsche 935/78 'Moby Dick'.
The Porsche 956 was developed by Porsche for the Group
C Sports Prototype regulations of 1982. The 956 met with immediate success,
Jackie Ickx and Derek Bell won the 1982 Le Mans 24 Hour race, and the minor
placing's were also taken by 956's.
went on to win the Le Mans 24 Hour races of 1983, 1984 and 1985. Ultimately
the car was replaced by the 962C.
The 'clickable' image is a close up of the 1982 Le Mans
winning 956 exhibited 'upside down' in the museum.
The Porsche 959, developed by Porsche in 1983 for Group
B Motorsport and the Paris Dakar Rally, the 959 included four wheel drive,
water cooled cylinder heads and turbo chargers. Porsche claim it was the
first production car to reach 322kmh, (200mph).
The 'clickable' image is the unmistakeable flowing lines
of the 959 rear quarter, incorporating the rear spoiler.
The Porsche 962C was based on the 956 with the
wheelbase extended by 120mm. Numerous versions of the 962C were raced
including a bi-turbo car in Europe and a single turbo charger version in the
United States IMSA series. Porsche 962C's won Le Mans in 1986 and 1987,
driven on both occasions by Derek Bell, Hans Joachim Stuck and Al Holbert.
The 'clickable' image is the actual car that won the Le
Mans 24 Hour Race in 1987.
Porsche produced many variants of 'Spyders', examples
included the 1953 '550 Spyder', the 1969 '917 PA Spyder', the 1977 '936
Spyder', the 2005 '9R6 RS Spyder' and in 2010 Porsche announced the '918
Spyder Hybrid' incorporating a 3.4 litre engine from the 9R6 RS Spyder,
three electric motors powered by a lithium ion battery stack and a KERS
kinetic energy recovery system. Porsche claim the 918 Spyder Hybrid achieves fuel
consumption of 3.0 litres/100km and a maximum speed of 320kmh.
The 'clickable' image is the DHL sponsored '9R6 RS Spyder',
developed for the Le Mans Prototype Class 2 Series.
Porsche and rallying, certainly the compact low slung
'911' does not appear ideally suited to rallying, however in 1982 a '911 SC
RS' with the underpinnings of a '959', which included four wheel drive, won
the 1984 Paris Dakar Rally.
Two years later
the final incarnation of the '959 Paris Dakar' won the 1986 Paris Dakar Rally, taking the
first two places.
The 'clickable' image is a Porsche 959 Paris Dakar, with Rothmans
sponsorship, as entered in the 1986 Paris Dakar Rally.
- THE MUSEUM:
In July 2004 Porsche decided to build a museum to house
some of their magnificent motoring achievements and on Saturday 31st January
2009, the Porsche Museum was opened to the public, a unique structure angled
The Museum is located at
Zuffenhausen's Porscheplatz 1, Stuttgart, immediately adjacent the Porsche
Showroom and expansive Factory facilities. It is definitely worth a visit
requiring a minimum of two days to really appreciate the full exhibition.
The 'clickable' image is part of the Museum's external