Porsche’s Legendary Era of GT1 Racing: Part I

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When I was a child, I was a massive fan of Hot Wheels. It fueled my car obsession before I had discovered Top Gear. I collected them for many years, but one car always stood out to me. It didn’t look like any other car I had seen before. The aggressive low cut front end, the vented hood and wheel arches, the roof scoop, the extended wheelbase, the massive ducktail and high rising wing kept me wondering what car it could have been. All I could recognize were the 2 “fried egg” headlights from the 996 911. But as I peered underneath the car to discover the plastic under tray with the make and model I discovered that, yes, it was in fact, a 996 911. But the three characters in front of 996 911 were the ones that confused me. What could GT1 possibly mean? Why did the car look completely different just because GT1 was added to its name?

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Photo Credit: HERE

GT1 was a form of FIA Championships in the 1990s. Porsche made 3 GT1 based cars during this era of legendary racing. The first GT1 car was based on the 993, the second was based on the first one with minor revisions, and the third was based on the 996. These 911s would have to race against some of the most important names in Le Mans history, such as the McLaren F1 GTR, the Mercedes CLK GTR, and the Toyota GT-One. These cars were the pinnacle of the automobile, the absolute extreme of what the manufacturers could achieve. The reason behind these three new GT1 cars being produced was the disappointing season for the 962. It was too outdated and could not keep up with the competition. The F1 GTRs were dominating in the Le Mans endurance race and Porsche could not endure being on the losing side. The 993 911 GT1 was born.

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The 993 911 GT1 was introduced in 1996. Nobert Singer, who had been responsible for every Porsche that had competed in Le Mans, was given the 993 911 and the objective to make it a Le Mans monster. He took the front end of a 993, attached it to a custom built tubular frame and a monocoque chassis. Then he attached it to the rear of a 962 to produce this Frankenstein of the car world. It had a watercooled twin turbo 3.2 liter flat six that made 590 horsepower and 479 pound feet of torque. The flat six was mounted longitudinally and was connected to a 6 speed manual transmission. It reached 100 kph (62 mph) in 3.7 seconds and hit a top speed of 307 kph (191 mph), however during Le Mans the car achieved 320 kph (205 mph) on the La Sarthe straight. To help achieve this, all of the body panels on this car were changed; the only parts shared with the original car were the headlights and taillights.

 

Even the staple of the 911-its rear mounted engine-was moved to become mid engined in order to aid weight distribution and aerodynamics. The 993 911 GT1 was revealed to the public at the 4 Hours of Brands Hatch endurance race and took a 1-2 finish. It finished 5th overall, and third in its class.

During this era of FIA regulations, manufacturers were forced produce at least one production car for the race car to be based on. Instead of Porsche wasting their time producing the next generation of 911 and not focusing enough on the GT1 car, they decided to produce a “Homologation Special” called the 911 GT1 Straßenversion (which translates to street version).

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Photo Credit: HERE

The Straßenversion had the same twin turbo 3.2 liter flat six, however it was detuned to 532 horsepower , mainly because of emissions regulations in Europe at the time. The ground clearance was increased, the suspension was softened and the car was given a more comfortable interior. The difference in the 0-100 kph (62 mph) time was 0.2 seconds; from 3.7 seconds to 3.9 seconds. Even though regulations called for 25 cars, Porsche produced 23 units of the Straßenversion; all were sold to the public with one being delivered to the German government. As for the price, a clean $912,000 out of your bank account.

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Photo Credit: HERE

The new GT1 car was mechanically identical to the previous GT1 car. Minor revisions led to the name 911 GT1 Evo (Evolution). The biggest difference between the old GT1 and the GT1 Evo were the new headlights and taillights, which previewed the next generation 911 lights, also referred to as the “fried egg headlights.” The aerodynamics were revised in order to increase downforce and reduce drag. The wing was adjustable based on top speed or handling preferences and it weighed only 1,050 kg (2,310 lb).

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Photo Credit: HERE

Unfortunately, the car was plagued with reliability problems and did not cover the full race distance. This motivated Porsche to work harder and smarter for the next season of the FIA World Endurance Championship and boy, did they deliver with the successor of the GT1 Evo, the 996 based GT1-98. Make sure to come back next week to hear the exhilarating story behind it, including nearly fatal crashes and increasing competitiveness between the manufacturers participating.

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As always, THANK YOU FOR READING and come back next Sunday for a brand new article. Don’t forget to follow us on WordPress and share this article with your friends! Follow us on Instagram at rsreportblog and check out our Facebook Group, Porsche Enthusiasts United. Feel free to suggest new topics in the Contact page. Newly added on the contact page is a link to the Porsche Club of America website which you should definitely check out HERE! Thank you for reading and don’t forget to come back next Sunday!

The Porsche 997 GT2RS: Supercar Slayer

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Photo Link HERE

A few days ago, I was watching some videos about the new 911 GT2RS, and what a car. With a 3.8 liter twin turbocharged flat 6 making 700 ps (690 hp) and 553 lb/ft of torque, the new GT2RS skyrockets to 60 mph in 2.7 seconds…and it’s rear wheel drive! 100 mph comes in 5.5 seconds and before you know it, you’re bouncing off the rev limiter at an ELECTRONICALLY LIMITED top speed of 211 mph, mindbogglingly fast. That’s just in a straight line with a massive rear wing slowing you down. It’s even faster on the track. The GT2RS has set the Nurburgring lap record twice (6:47.3 and then 6:40.3). However, it’s not all that surprising. It seems that every supercar nowadays has 700+ hp-you can buy a 707 hp Dodge for $50,000. These straight line figures would have been biblical 5 years ago, but now are just a part of the norm. Competitors like the McLaren 720S and the Ferrari 488 Pista can easily give the GT2RS a run for its money, and sometimes even pass it, if conditions are right. We are now at a stalemate in the supercar world, I’m afraid to say it but I think this new generation of supercars are too fast, and they’ve all lost their “zing” compared to their predecessors.

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Photo Link HERE

Back in 2011, there were the big 4 that determined the gold standard of what a supercar should be. There was the Ferrari 458 Italia, an emotional, passionate, and strikingly beautiful beast, a classic. Then, there was the Lamborghini Gallardo, the little brother, the Ferrari’s evil all wheel drive twin. Next to the Italians were the British in the then called McLaren MP4-12C, a computer on wheels. The McLaren was the poster child of the future, an engineering masterpiece, stuffed with electronic witchcraft and wizardry. The McLaren wasn’t as loud or as fun as its Italian rivals, but it was no less special in its own regard. And last but not least, zooming past them all, was the Porsche 997 GT2RS, a true monster.

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Photo Link HERE

The new 991 GT2RS is no slouch in any way, it can easily keep up with and beat all its rivals, including the big 4. But it was nothing compared to what the 997 GT2RS did back in its heyday. It was only a few days ago that I realized just how fast it really was. Back then, the 458 had 570 hp, the gallardo packed an impressive 552 hp, and the McLaren was pushing an impressive 600 hp. The Porsche however, had 620 hp AND weighed significantly less than all of them. Power came from, a then new, 3.6 liter turbocharged flat 6 engine mated to an old school 6 speed manual which enabled the Porsche to demolish the competition, with twice the fun.

The prime of the 991 GT2RS is living on borrowed time. It’s only a matter of time before Ferrari, McLaren, Lamborghini, or even Porsche themselves make something faster. It is VERY fast, but it’s sadly not an icon. With the 997 however, it’s a completely different story. Not only did it dominate the competition back then, it continues to do so to this day. I was thinking about this a few days ago and decided to do some calculations. From these calculations, I realized that the 997 GT2RS has a lower weight to power ratio than: a Lamborghini Huracan, a Lamborghini Huracan Performante, a Lamborghini Aventador, a Lamborghini Aventador SV, a Ferrari 488 GTB, a McLaren 570 S, and it’s within 0.03 lb/horsepower of a McLaren 650 S. For those of you that don’t know, a lower weight to power ratio means a faster car. In terms of handling, the 997’s 7:18 Nurburgring time is faster than: a Ferrari 488 GTB, a Lamborghini Huracan, a Lamborghini Aventador, the list goes on and on. And the one thing all these cars have in common besides being slower than the 997 GT2RS, they are also ALL newer than it.

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Photo Link HERE

Point proven, the 997 GT2RS is a “good old-fashioned beast,” the Space Captain as Porsche calls it. Like the Porsche 959, it was truly ahead of its time. With only 500 of these monsters ever having been made, values are climbing through the stratosphere. If you think about it, it’s kind of a shame how fast supercar technology is progressing due to the fact that beasts like the 997 GT2RS will likely never be seen again.

As always, THANK YOU FOR READING and come back next Sunday for a brand new article. Don’t forget to follow us on WordPress and share this article with your friends! Follow us on Instagram at rsreportblog and check out our Facebook Group, Porsche Enthusiasts United. Feel free to suggest new topics in the Contact page. Newly added on the contact page is a link to the Porsche Club of America website which you should definitely check out HERE! Thank you for reading and don’t forget to come back next Sunday!

Porsche 992 Drops its Top for More fun in the Sun

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About two months after unveiling the brand new 992 911 to the world in stunning fashion, Porsche recently unveiled the Carrera S and 4S’ cabriolet counterparts, finally expanding the 992 range. Like the Carrera S and 4S coupes, the new cabriolets come powered by Porsche’s brand new 3.0 liter twin turbocharged flat six engine making 443 horsepower and 390 lb/ft of torque. Also, like their coupe counterparts, both the S and 4S cabriolets’ engines are mated to Porsche’s brand new 8 speed PDK gearbox with the mysterious hole in the middle, suggesting the introduction of a hybrid powertrain in the future. (Read more about the 992 coupes HERE-their interiors and features are the same as the cabriolets)

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The problem with cabriolets is that they tend to add a bit of weight and are slightly less rigid than their coupe counterparts. Although these effects have been minimized, not even the mighty 992 is exempt from these flaws. The cabriolets weigh about 155 lb more than the coupes. As a result they are about 0.2 seconds slower to 60 mph and their top speeds are an entire mph slower. However rigidity seems to not be a problem anymore since the Porsche is offering the new cabriolets with PASM sports suspension for the first time. They didn’t in previous generations due to them being less rigid. The new convertible top also raises and lowers in 12 seconds which is a HUGE improvement from the 991 which took 30 seconds.

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The main downside however, is the pricing. The Carrera S cabriolet starts at $126,100 and the Carrera 4S cabriolet starts at $133,400; this is without options. With options, you can up the price to over $200,000! For $200,000 you can buy almost any 911, including GT3s and even GT2s. As good as it is, is the new 992 cabriolet worth this much? I’ll let you be the judge of that.

As always, THANK YOU FOR READING and come back next Sunday for a brand new article. Don’t forget to like and share this article with your friends and follow us on Instagram at rsreportblog and check out our Facebook Group, Porsche Enthusiasts United. Feel free to suggest new topics in the Contact page. Newly added on the contact page is a link to the Porsche Club of America website which you should definitely check out HERE! Thank you for reading and don’t forget to come back next Sunday!

 

 

 

The Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport: Back for Round 2

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Photo Credit: https://cdn.motor1.com/images/mgl/OjJlM/s3/new-porsche-718-cayman-gt4-clubsport.jpg

It’s safe to say that the 981 generation Porsche Cayman GT4 was an excellent road car. It had good power, brakes, suspension, sound, and most importantly a 6 speed manual transmission. It’s no wonder everyone loved it. It was pretty fast too. Thanks to its low curb weight and 385 hp 3.8 liter flat 6 engine from the 911 Carrera S, the GT4 made the 0-60 sprint in 4.1 seconds and topped out at 183 mph; certainly no slouch. Thanks to its mid engine layout, handling was exceptional too.

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But it didn’t stop there because just after the GT4 was unveiled, Porsche Motorsport got their hands on one and voila, the Cayman GT4 Clubsport was born. Much like the newer GT2RS Clubsport, the GT4 Clubsport was a track only racecar version of the Cayman GT4. With a stripped out interior, race ready gearbox, and other little racy bits here and there, the Cayman GT4 Clubsport was ready to put an instant smile on any track day enthusiast’s face. Porsche sold 421 of these racecars before production ended, a pretty large number.

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For the 718 Cayman Porsche is doing things a bit backwards this generation with its revealing of the new 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport first; the road car is yet to be seen. For the second time around, the 718 Clubsport uses the now discontinued 3.8 liter engine from the previous generation GT4, except now with a revised intake manifold that brings a 40 hp increase (385 hp-425 hp). Like the previous generation, the new 718 Clubsport features a stripped out interior, a FIA spec roll cage, bucket seat, and a six point racing harness to keep the driver in place during hard corners. The 718 GT4 Clubsport also features the same light weight spring strut front suspension used in the 911 GT3 Cup Car.The new 718 GT4 Clubsport is also the first production racecar to use body parts made from natural fiber composite materials like flax and hemp fibers. With properties comparable to that of carbon fiber, these new natural fiber composite materials have been used to construct both the wing and doors of the new 718 Clubsport. Because of this and other weight saving features, the new 718  GT4 Clubsport tips the scales at just 2,910 lbs.

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Photo Credit: https://files1.porsche.com/filestore/galleryimagerwd/multimedia/none/motorsport-racingcars-982-718-c7-gt4-cs-gallery-03/zoom2/9b5a1888-feeb-11e8-8373-0019999cd470;sK/porsche-motorsport-image.jpg

Also available this time around is the choice of two different variants for the 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport. Amateur track day enthusiasts can opt for the $154,743 Trackday variant with fixed shock absorbers, air conditioning, electronic stability control, and traction control. For more experienced and even professional racing drivers, Porsche has the Competition version with 3 way adjustable shocks, and a more adjustable brake system. The Competition also features a massive 30.3 gallon fuel tank to cope with long distance events. Both variants are built to race with FIA certified parts.

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Photo Credit: https://car-images.bauersecure.com/pagefiles/72654/5_porsche-718-cayman-gt4.jpg

But let’s be honest, most of us here aren’t looking to buy a full-fledged racecar, we’re more into street cars (i.e. the 718 Cayman GT4). If that’s the case, the Clubsport offers us lots of insight into what the GT4 roadcar will be like, except for one thing…the engine. Porsche has stated that the engine used in the Clubsport will not be the engine used in the roadcar. But Porsche has also stated it won’t be a turbocharged 4 cylinder like all the other 718 cars. By process of elimination, we can infer that the new 718 Cayman GT4 will feature a likely detuned version of the 4.0 liter naturally aspirated flat 6 engine found in the 911 GT3. I can’t wait!

As always, THANK YOU FOR READING and come back next Sunday for a brand new article. Don’t forget to like and share this article with your friends and follow us on Instagram at rsreportblog and check out our Facebook Group, Porsche Enthusiasts United. Feel free to suggest new topics in the Contact page. Newly added on the contact page is a link to the Porsche Club of America website which you should definitely check out HERE! Thank you for reading and don’t forget to come back next Sunday!

 

 

 

The Porsche 959: A Showcase of the Future

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The Porsche 959 is often regarded as the father of modern supercars. Features we take for granted today like all wheel drive and adjustable suspension started with the 959 as pioneered very advanced technology at the time and formed a glimpse into the next 30 years of the automobile.

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The story of the Porsche’s 959 started back in 1981 when a man named Helmuth Bott approached Porsche’s managing director about his ideas for a new 911. Bott’s vision was to build a sports car that Porsche could rely on for years to come, sporting a whole array of new technologies like all wheel drive. Once he got the green light, Bott eagerly began testing his new prototype, originally called the Gruppe B, in Group B Rally competitions. After years of development, prototypes, and even racecars, the Porsche 959 road car was unveiled in 1985 as the world’s fastest production car with a top speed of 211 mph in the 959 Sport.

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The engine for the 959 was a great leap forward in terms of technology back then. Much like the Porsche Carrera GT, the 959’s engine began life as a race engine, the 2.85 liter twin turbo flat 6 from the Porsche 935.  But there was a slight problem. In the 1980s, the Porsche 911 was still air-cooled, so stuffing a water-cooled engine in a Porsche sports car was sacrilege. So to please purists, Porsche decided to make the cylinders air-cooled, but the rest of the engine water-cooled, a very bold move. And in a time where sports cars were carburetted, the 959 featured a Bosch fuel injection system along with dual overhead camshafts. The turbos were sequential rather than parallel meaning that turbo lag was a thing of the past while power remained high. This all summed up to 450 hp and 369 lb/ft of torque, numbers that can beat sports cars of today. This was upped to 510 hp and 414 lb/ft of torque in the 959 Sport, a number comparable to today’s supercars; and that was just the engine.

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Where the 959 really shined was its all wheel drive system. In the year 1985, the 959 had an all wheel drive system that could monitor and change the torque split between the front and rear wheels. From the cabin, you could adjust the ride height and even the damper stiffness after checking your tire pressure via the electronic tire pressure sensor. Even the body was advanced, constructed from lightweight and exotic materials like aluminum and Kevlar composites along with a material called Nomex for the floors. The 959 even had lightweight magnesium alloy wheels. Keep in mind this was in the year 1985, some cars today don’t even have this technology.

The 959 basically paved the way for the next 30 years of the automobile, showing us what we thought was impossible, and what was beyond our wildest dreams. It’s only fitting that the true successor of the 959 is not the Carrera GT, but the 918 Spyder. With its advanced hybrid powertrain and aerodynamic wizardry, the 918 represents the future of the supercar, much like the 959 did back in its day, and if this is true, then the future is bright my friends, it really is.

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As always, THANK YOU FOR READING and come back next Sunday for a brand new article. Don’t forget to like and share this article with your friends and follow us on Instagram at rsreportblog and check out our Facebook Group, Porsche Enthusiasts United. Feel free to suggest new topics in the Contact page. Newly added on the contact page is a link to the Porsche Club of America website which you should definitely check out HERE! Thank you for reading and don’t forget to come back next Sunday!

 

 

The Porsche 718 Boxster and Cayman T: Reviving the Art of Driving

The sports car is back in action!

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The year was 2016. Sports cars were becoming a forgotten relic of the past, replaced with 9 stage traction control, heavy electronics, automatic transmissions, and dead downsized engines. The world’s most favorite sports car went down a year before when the Porsche 911 got the downsized turbo treatment. The future was grim. But as the classic sports cars we all knew and loved were taking their dying breaths, Porsche came in and revealed the 911R, a giant middle finger to lap times, 0-60 times, and lightning fast automatic transmissions. The 911R was all about the driving experience, the howl of a naturally aspirated engine and the exhilarating act of rowing your own gears at 120 mph. When you were in the 911R, it was just you and the car, nothing else. It was a bold move, but it started a renaissance. the 911R was limited to 991 units and prices began to soar. Originally costing about 200,000 dollars, some examples were selling for over 1 million dollars, people were hooked on the once lost art of driving.

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In late 2017, Porsche continued the legacy of the 911R with the unveiling of the 911 Carrera T. Named after the legendary 911T of the 60s and 70s, the Carrera “Touring” was basically a base Carrera with a few  bits from the Carrera S and a little less weight. The result: an unforgettable drivers car. A few months later, the track focused GT3 got the touring treatment in the form of the “Touring Package.” The Touring Package on the GT3 gave you a full leather interior, rear wing delete, and a 6 speed manual transmission, creating a stunning, under the radar supercar.

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On December 18, Porsche extended the Touring Treatment to the 718 twins (the Cayman and Boxster) with the surprise reveal of the 718 Cayman T and the 718 Boxster T. Following the precedent of the 911 Carrera T, the 718 T consists of the base Cayman or Boxster with a few options from the S models (mainly PASM sport suspension) and the removal of accessories that don’t “add to your driving experience”. Inside, you’ll find a stripped down interior littered with unique T badging and color accents. Both models are powered by the 300 hp 2.0 Liter turbocharged flat 4 found in the base 718 models. Both cars have a top speed of 170 mph and 0-60 times of 4.9 seconds (manual), 4.7 seconds (PDK), or 4.5 seconds (PDK with Sport Chrono Package). Although the 718 T is not an immediate icon, it is a beacon of hope for us car enthusiasts, as it shows that Porsche’s new T line will ensure us new driver focused models for years to come.

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As always, THANK YOU FOR READING and come back next Sunday for a brand new article. Don’t forget to like and share this article with your friends and follow us on Instagram at rsreportblog and check out our Facebook Group, Porsche Enthusiasts United. Feel free to suggest new topics in the Contact page. Newly added on the contact page is a link to the Porsche Club of America website which you should definitely check out HERE! Thank you for reading and don’t forget to come back next Sunday!

 

 

The Untold Story of the Porsche Carrera Name

Do you know where it all started?

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The word Carrera, meaning race in Spanish has been a staple in Porsche naming sequence since the 50s. But does anyone know why? Where did this name originate from? Here is the untold story of the legendary Porsche Carrera name…

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This story of ours takes place in the 1950s, a simpler time when the Porsche 911 was still an idea stirring around in Ferdinand Alexander Porsche’s head, James Dean was taking on the world, and the Cold War was getting under way. Meanwhile, in Mexico, a rather quiet place at the time, there was a race being hosted: The “Carrera Panamericana.” The Carrera Panamericana wasn’t your ordinary race however, as the name suggests, the Carrera Panamericana was a cross-country ordeal. Racing from one end of Mexico to the other, the race consisted of 9 stages, and 5 days of constant racing the best part  on closed public roads. Running for 5 consecutive years (1950-1954) the Carrera Panamericana was widely considered to be the most dangerous race in the world, which is exactly why Porsche got involved.

The first time Porsche got involved with the Carrera Panamericana was in 1952, when two private entrants raced their Porsches in the event. For 1953 however, Porsche racing boss, Huschke von Hanstein aka “The Racing Baron,” was ready to officially take on the event. Von Hanstein commissioned  Porsche 550 Spyders to race in the event but due to ongoing compilations only two private Porsches finished the event. But the Racing Baron returned in 1954, now with heavily modified, and purpose-built 550 Spyders for the event. The battle was a long an tough, but in the end, the two 550s flew past the finish line at a class winning average speed for the 1,908 mile race of 97.63 mph. The two Porsches, piloted by legends Jaroslav Juhan and Hans Herrmann finished 1st and 2nd in their class and 3rd and 4th overall. It was this victory that inspired the Carrera name.

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Starting in 1955, Porsche began to name all its race ready models like the 356, 904, 906, 911 and 924 after the Carrera Panamericana. Porsche eventually adopted the name for the base model 911s, making the Carrera name a staple in Porsche’s history.

As always, come back next Sunday for a brand new article. Don’t forget to like and share this article with your friends and follow us on Instagram at rsreportblog and check out our Facebook Group, Porsche Enthusiasts United. Feel free to suggest new topics in the Contact page. Newly added on the contact page is a link to the Porsche Club of America website which you should definitely check out HERE! Thank you for reading and don’t forget to come back next Sunday!