2012 Year In Review: 10 Top Porsche News Posts of 2012
9 Magazine takes a look back at our 10 biggest news stories from the year
The year 2012 is close to over, and it’s that time of the year to look back at the most interesting and remarkable news stories that were posted to the site this year for Porsche enthusiasts. In all, it was an unbelieveable year for Porsche. Although the year started off with bad news of the passing of F.A. “Butzi” Porsche, it ended with the introduction of a totally new concept car built to showcase the future of the Porsche brand. In between, the introduction of two newly designed vehicles; the new Boxster and the new Cayman. 2012 was also the year Porsche enthusiasts finally got a diesel powered Porsche available in the States.
Here are the top 10 news items for 2012:
This was for sure the biggest news story of the year for Porsche enthusiasts. Sadly, Ferdinand Alexander Porsche died on April 5, 2012 in Salzburg, aged 76. Ferdinand Alexander Porsche was born in Stuttgart on 11 December 1935, the oldest son of Dorothea and Ferry Porsche. Even his childhood was shaped by cars, and he spent much of his time in the engineering offices and development workshops of his grandfather Ferdinand Porsche. In 1943 the family accompanied the Porsche company’s move to Austria, where he went to school in Zell am See. After returning to Stuttgart in 1950, he attended the private Waldorf school. After leaving school, he enrolled at the prestigious Ulm School of Design.
“Butzi” will be missed by all, but his legacy will live on. RIP Ferdinand Alexander Porsche. 9 Magazine created this tribute video that can be seen here: “Butzi” Tribute Video
In early 2012, Porsche introduced the new Boxster. Never before in the history of the Porsche Boxster was a change of generation so comprehensive. The open-top two-seater car is being marketed with a completely new lightweight body and a completely revamped chassis. Considerably lower weight, longer wheelbase, a wider track and larger wheels significantly enhance yet further the mid-engine sports car’s driving dynamics, already far and away the best in its class, supported by the new electro-mechanical power steering. The new Boxsters boast superior performance and are also up to 15 per cent more fuel-efficient.
The creation of the Integrated Automotive Group between Volkswagen and Porsche was finalized on August 1. “The path is now finally clear for a bright future together. Even closer cooperation will enable us to significantly strengthen Volkswagen and Porsche, and further expand the Group’s product portfolio with fascinating new vehicles,” said Prof. Dr. Martin Winterkorn, Chairman of Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft’s Board of Management, in Wolfsburg on Wednesday. Under the structure developed jointly by Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft and Porsche Automobil Holding SE (Porsche SE), Porsche SE contributed its indirect 50.1 percent holding in Porsche AG to Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft effective August 1, 2012.
In September of 2012, the biggest news of the motorsports year was the official announcement of the merger of the American LeMans Series and Grand-Am Racing. For the 2014 season, ALMS and Grand-Am will merger for a combined championship. Mr. Jim France along with Dr. Don Panoz made the announcement at a press conference in Daytona. The details and technical regulations along with the tire specifications still have not been announced, and will be discussed in the coming months ahead of the 2014 season. This created even more news for Porsche enthusiasts including team announcents about the merger and the announcement of Flying Lizard’s withdrawal from the GT Class and the subsequent announcement of the Lizards racing in GTC Class for 2013.
2012 produced some record prices for Porsches at auction. Perhaps the world’s most recognized Porsche 917 was auctioned in 2012 for a record $5.5 Million at the Mecum Auction in Monterey, California. This car previously driven by racing legends Mark Donohue and George Follmer and debuted at Mosport in 1972 for the Can-Am Series. It dominated the ’72 Can-Am series taking 1st at 5 of 9 races. With the market for vintage Porsche racecars exploding in 2012, it will be interesting to see what happens next year! How much higher can the prices go?
Porsche celebrated the world premiere of the new Cayman at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show in November. The third generation of the Cayman made its appearance before an international audience at the LA Convention Center. The new Cayman is re-engineered from the ground up – it is lower and longer, lighter and faster, more efficient and more powerful than ever. Delivering more power with even better fuel economy than before, the highly efficient flat-six cylinder engines is mounted just in front of the rear axle, surrounded by its lightweight aluminium and steel body. The Cayman is powered by a 2.7-liter engine with 275 hp; with the Sport Chrono package it accelerates from a standstill to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds. The 3.4-liter engine in the Cayman S produces 325 hp; with PDK and the Sport Chrono package it sprints from 0-60 mph in 4.4 seconds.
Back in September of 2012, 9 Magazine published the leaked factory Brochure of the 918 Spyder. The 918 Spyder brochure made its way to the internet and photos were posted that appeared to be authentic. The photos included the vintage livery that was announced on July 31 (which includes Martini & Salzberg editions) and specifications that include color charts and performance figures.
Urban Outlawis a portrait of Magnus Walker, the rebel Porsche customizer who turned a hobby into an obsession, and an obsession into a successful business. From a workshop in downtown Los Angeles, Magnus obsessively harvests fragments from donor 911s, grafting them onto vintage frames to create one-off automobiles with the spirit of Ferdinand Porsche but an ethos entirely his own. The short film is one of those that you must see for 2012. If you mised it you can watch - URBAN OUTLAW HERE:
In August, Porsche introduced the new 911 Carrera 4 and Carrera 4S. The new Porsche 911 Carrera 4 unites the performance and efficiency of the new, seventh-generation of the 911 Carrera with the dynamic benefits of the latest version of the active all-wheel-drive system PTM (Porsche Traction Management). The typical Porsche all-wheel-drive system with focused rear bias in this latest 911 version promises maximum vehicle dynamics on a wide variety of road surfaces and in all weather conditions. The new 911 Carrera 4 models deliver traction and dynamic performance to the fourth power.
The new all-wheel-drive 911 was launched in four versions – the 911 Carrera 4 and 911 Carrera 4S, each as Coupé and Cabriolet. They sport the same traits as the rear-wheel drive versions: their lightweight body design, suspension, engines and gearboxes are identical, the only exception being modifications related to the all-wheel-drive. This means that despite a higher level of engine and driving performance, all four models consume significantly less fuel than the previous models; total savings for individual versions are as much as 16 per cent. In addition, the new 911 Carrera 4 is up to 143 lbs. (65 kg) lighter in weight when compared to the previous generation 911 Carrera C4.
In surprise fashion, Porsche introduced the Panamera Sport Turismo Concept at the Paris Auto Show. How Porsche could keep such a project a secret remains unknown, but the new Sport Turismo took the world by storm. The Panamera Sport Turismo concept car shows how amazingly intelligent and efficient drive technology might look in the design language of tomorrow. The Sport Turismo unites the next generation hybrid drive with new ideas for an evolutionary, sporty body concept; it combines Porsche performance with comprehensive everyday practicality. The drive system of the Panamera Sport Turismo is an advanced development of the parallel full hybrid that Porsche already implements today in the Panamera S Hybrid and Cayenne S Hybrid. The new electric motor produces about 70 kW (95 hp), which is around twice as much as in today’s Porsche hybrid drive, while the supercharged three-litre V6 engine still produces 245 kW (333 hp) here. In their interplay, they accelerate the concept car from zero to 100 km/h in less than six seconds. Although the ‘shooting brake’ body was received with mixed reviews, overall it was a hit with Porsche fans.
In all it was a fantastic year for Porsche. This year, Porsche AG delivered 128,978 new vehicles to customers around the world, meaning that the previous year’s figure (of 118,868 vehicles in total) had already been surpassed one month before the end of the year. Porsche is investing in cutting-edge, future-oriented education and training. A new training centre is to be built in Zuffenhausen, which is set to provide additional capacity for more than 500 career entrants. Porsche has acquired a 9,000 square meter site for the planned facility. The site is located in the immediate vicinity of the plant. The new centre will bring together the training of all technical and commercial professions and courses of studies of the Baden-Württemberg Cooperative State University under one roof. In addition to a training workshop, which will focus on the latest technologies, the facility provides training rooms and office space. The centre will also host extensive further training for specialists.
Porsche also broke ground on a new USA Headquarters in Atlanta. They celebrated a landmark groundbreaking of its new headquarters, to be known as One Porsche Drive. Located adjacent to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, the 26.4-acre site is the first complex to be built in the “Aerotropolis Atlanta” business district.
9 Magazine saw signifcant growth as well and we are honored that you visited our site in 2012 and hope you will continue getting your Porsche news from us in the upcoming year!
Photos: Porsche, 9Magazine