SO YOU FINALLY GOT THAT PORSCHE

When Spring arrives in the Bay Area, there's no better way to celebrate the fresh air but in a Porsche.
Consider this blog as a depository for awesome Porsche drives/tours in and around the San Francisco Bay Area and Northern California.

Draw an imaginary line across the center of California. Anchor one end off the Monterey Area/Santa Cruz mountains, on the Pacific coast. Run the line east over the Coast Range, through the Central Valley, and over the Sierra Nevada mountains. Tether the other end of the line at the Nevada border, on the fringe of the Great Basin Desert.

"Backroads of Northern California" covers the incomparable natural beauty, the myths and the history of the Golden State on the northern side of that line, while "Backroads of Southern California" does the honors for the lower half, from the San Joaquin Valley to the border with Mexico.


TOURS are what they sound like - someone leads a bunch of Porschephiles hither-and-yon for the express purpose of having them follow onto great Porsche roads, go interesting places and generally have a wonderful time driving their cars.

"Email-a-Ride" - called short notice drive/tour

"Email-a-Ride

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Porsche 550 Spyder Story - the first true competition-bred Porsches

The 550 Spyders

The first 500's appeared in 1953. These were the first true competition-bred Porsches; lightweight, two seat, aluminum bodied, tubular framed, open-topped cars. The initial pair of 550's was unique unto themselves, racing only with Volkwagen-derived pushrod boxer four cylinder engines, fitted with detachable roofs. These dominated their class at Le Mans finishing one-two in the 1500cc division. Later, one of them won its category in the famed Pan Americana Mexican road race.

Subsequent 550's, all fitted with the four-cam Carrera flat four cylinder, carried on what the initial 550's had started. The became the dominant cars world wide in the small displacement sports racing categories in the factory's hands, but also in the hands of Porsche's customers who purchased every one of the quick little cars they could find.

In 1956, Porsche introduced a slightly modified Spyder, the 550A. This shocked the racing world when it won the brutal Targa Florio road race outright in its debut appearance, humbling such well-known and much more powerful rivals as Ferrari, Maserati and Jaguar. During the next five years the 550A continued winning, for the factory, and the factory's customers in almost every venue where it competed. Indeed, it was a car that got more attention for its occasional loses than it did for its nearly non-stop string of victories.

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Initially the early 550 Spyders were powered by engines developed from Volkswagen, of pushrod Boxer four cylinder design. In later months the 550 Spyder assured Porsches racing heritage by winning the Pan Americana Mexican road race.

 
550 Porsche Spyder

When put into production the 550 Spyder was fitted a Fuhrmann engine, a 1500cc four-camshaft Carrera, flat four cylinder block producing 110 bhp.

550 Porsche Spyder
550 Porsche Spyder

 The car was of lightweight tubular steel construction, a true two seated sports car

 
550 Porsche Spyder

rear view

550 Porsche Spyder

James Jean in the mid-fifties, his particular car was named 'Little Bastard'. (pictures below)

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James Dean 550 Porsche Spyder
James Dean 550 Porsche Spyder
James Dean 550 Porsche Spyder
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Although the Spyder is well remembered today for its outstanding racing attributes, it is also lesser known for its ownership by James Jean in the mid-fifties, his particular car was named 'Little Bastard'. Horrifically it was this car that were to take his life. It was reported that Dean was being driven by his German mechanic, Rolf Wutherich (pictured above) at the time who was rumoured to road racing another motorist along Route 446, a Californian highway at the time. A vehicle pulled out, in to the path of James Deans 550 Spyder and a fatal collision occurred. The mechanic lived and the motorist was not prosecuted as the mechanic driving the Spyder was of German origin and the values of World War Two stood to ensure that the prosecution would be overruled.

Just 90 Porsche 550 Spyders were lovingly hand-built by Old World craftsmen between 1954 and 1956; no two of them look exactly alike. Rarely will such a car be put on the market; if it happens, Spyder ownership will usually be restricted to the inner circle of cognoscenti of the marque. Prices far exceed half a Million Dollars.

Spyder aluminum body construction was commissioned to coachbuilder WENDLER in Reutlingen, the heart of the Fatherland. WENDLER’s trademark was a pair of beautiful, teardrop-shaped body badges, mounted to the front fenders.

Redefining the idea of a minimalist car, the 550A features an open cockpit. The engine is mounted amidships, just behind the driver. Not unlike a Lotus 11, the Spyder is living proof that size does matter. These featherweight, one-and-a-half-liter cars were true dragon slayers; innumerable racing successes included many placements well ahead of far larger machines, such as the 4.5-liter Maseratis and Ferraris of the period.

So, what’s lurking behind these aluminum bars, you might wonder?

Quite a surprise! Instead of the vulnerable 1950s four-cam motor, a prime example of Porsche's own Type 616/36 pushrod engine has found its way into this Spyder. The power plant is of 1966 vintage; its main assets are great compression, superior oil pressure, and the absence of any oil leaks. Topped by twin dual throat Dell’Orto carburetors with velocity stacks and mesh screens, and recently tuned by our Senior master technician Dieter, the 1600 dual port Porsche engine is in fine fettle and healthy as the proverbial ox.

Weighing only 1136 lbs. (!), the Spyder is built around a tubular space frame, just like its contemporaries, the Mercedes 300SLR and the "Birdcage" Maserati. Dash is all business, with its famous trio of green-on-black gauges--large tachometer in the middle--and wood-rimmed steering wheel.

So what's it like, driving a street-legal race car, an automobile icon, a car so extreme that it stops other drivers in their tracks?

With an estimated 110 horsepower from 1.6 liters (69 horsepower per liter displacement), this engine is destined to last. But make no mistake: the power-to-weight ratio is about equal to the one found on a pure, 260 hp Porsche 930 Turbo. Acceleration is fierce, and the Boxer motor, sitting right behind your back, won't let you doubt its intentions for a second. Keep the revs up, and it screams all the way to redline, like there's no tomorrow. Occasional flame spitting from the handcrafted, large diameter exhaust pipe is part of the fun you won't want to miss, trust me.

autoeclub 

Posted via web from dedeporsche's posterous

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Walter Röhrl - Saturday's 3-27-2010 Endurance Championship at the Nürburgring..."63 years and Still Going Strong!"




It is "Röhrl" again.....


"The car has exceeded my wildest expectations and I had lots of fun at the wheel"...Walter Röhrl , Porsche company test driver.

Nürburgring -With "63 Years and Still Going Strong!", One could describe the racing comeback to twicer rally champion Walter Röhrl Saturday's March 27th, 2010, VLN "Endurance Championship" at the Nürburgring.

As the most successful rally driver in the standard, "roaring" Porsche 911 GT3 drove through the green hell, few suspected that Röhrl , the Niki Lauda had once dubbed as a "genius on wheels", three weeks before his 63rd already Birthday was celebrated.

Walter Röhrl has not forgotten how to Rennautofahren (race cars), presented the 63-year-old to17-year-old-racing abstinence impressive evidence. Röhrl's appearance on Saturday at the Long Distance Championship served as a training session for participating in the 24-hour race at the Nürburgring in May.

The second race of the VLN Endurance Championship, the 35th DMV 4-hour race in the racing community Duren, will take place on Saturday 10th of April instead of the Green Hell of Nürburgring.
Photo credits by: Johan Koning Hemmerling

See and download the full gallery on posterous

Friday, March 26, 2010

New Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid at Nürburgring - Testing March 2010- from my friend Johan Koning Hemmerling

Pictures of the Porsche 911 GT3-R Hybrid from last week official testing at the "Ring" by my special Porsche agent at the Nürburgring .. Johan Koning Hemmerling. More to follow...from today's race.

Posted via email from dedeporsche's posterous

Thursday, March 25, 2010

New Porsche 911 GT3R Hybrid at Nürburgring - VLN tests on 03/20/2010

Megafactories - Behind the scenes at the Porsche factory at Stuttgart Germany

Documentary showing how the Porsche 911 is made at Porsche's megafactory in Stuttgart Germany. Manufacturing speed and style, the Porsche factory in Stuttgart is where many drivers' dreams come true. Venture inside and discover how this iconic sports car is made.

Ferdinand Porsche was a self-taught automotive designer and engineer. In 1900, at the age of 25, he designed the first hybrid gasoline-electric car for an Austrian company. Then in the ‘30s he sold the German government on his dream of a small, simple car that would be affordable for the masses. That car became the Volkswagen Beetle.

Megafactories - Porsche Part 1 of 5

Post-war shortages forced Porsche to use components from the Volkswagen Beetle – the rear-mounted, air-cooled four-cylinder engine, the gear box and the suspension – to realize his next car. The car that emerged in 1948 was the Porsche 356. More than 75,000 were made over the course of 15 years. 

Megafactories - Porsche Part 2 of 5

Since 1964, every 911 ever built has been made at Porsche’s factory in Stuttgart, Germany. The factory produces around 40 Boxters, about 110 Porsche 911s and approximately 500 engines daily. Porsche builds 16 versions of the Porsche 911, including the 911 GT3 which delivers 435 horsepower.

Megafactories - Porsche Part 3 of 5

Each 911 has around 5,000 welds. Over 4 decades, the design of the 911 has been updated just five times – resulting in six generations.

Megafactories - Porsche Part 4 of 5

The most popular colours for a Porsche are black, white and red, but Porsche can custom paint a car any colour (for a fee). The plant makes more than 20 different versions of its 6-cylinder engine ranging from 255 to 535 horsepower.

Megafactories - Porsche Part 5 of 5

National Geographic Channel

 

 

 

Posted via web from dedeporsche's posterous

Nürburgring 24 hour race: Strong driver line-up for Eifel marathon

  joerg_bergmeister.jpgThe countdown to the Nürburgring 24 hour race is on. Porsche teams use the first round of the Nürburgring Long Distance Championship on the 27 March to prepare for the marathon on the circuit in Germany's Eifel region.
Working particularly hard is title defender, Manthey Racing: Porsche works drivers Timo Bernhard and Marc Lieb from Germany as well as Manthey pilot Marcel Tiemann (Monaco) share driving duties in the cockpit of the new Porsche 911 GT3 R at its race debut. The fourth man to join the squad at the 24 hour race on 15 May is, like last year, Romain Dumas (France).
Also awaited with anticipation is the racing premiere of the Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid which retrieves energy during braking and stores it in an electric flywheel.
Porsche works drivers Jörg Bergmeister (Germany), Richard Lietz (Austria), Porsche junior Marco Holzer (Germany) and the former Porsche junior Martin Ragginger (Austria) will pilot the vehicle at the 24 hour race. At the test race this coming weekend, Bergmeister, Lietz and Ragginger share the cockpit. "For me it's always something special to race in Germany," admits Bergmeister, who normally competes in a Porsche 911 GT3 RSR in the American Le Mans Series. "We'll gain a huge amount of knowledge at the season-opener of the long distance championship and this should help us to understand the new hybrid system even better and to further develop the car in time for the 24 hour race."
After 17 years, Germany's double world rally champion, Walter Röhrl, makes his racing comeback at the season-opening round of the long distance championship. Joining him at the wheel of a standard Porsche 911 GT3 RS for the Nürburgring 24 hour race is DTM legend Roland Asch (Germany) as well as journalists Horst von Saurma-Jeltsch (Germany) and Chris Harris (Great Britain). "I'm very much looking forward to contesting a race again," says Röhrl. "But the emphasis this weekend will be on gathering as much experience with the car as possible under real racing conditions."
Round one of the Nürburgring Long Distance Championship takes off on 27 March at midday and runs over a distance of four hours.

911 GT3 RS: Porsche Experience TV - True Legend Forever

Experience the latest and most track focused 911 as the new 911 GT3 RS is driven to the limit. Discover what makes the RS badge so special with the new version being compared to historic RS models. Visit http://www.porsche.co.uk/experience

Posted via web from dedeporsche's posterous

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

First test run of the 2010 Porsche 911 GT3 RS at the Nurburgring...in preparation for 24 hr

Chris Harris was at the Nurburgring this last weekend for a first test in the Porsche 911 GT3 RS that he will race with Walter Röhrl at the Nurburgring 24hr...May 15th and 16th.


"So it all begins today. Test started at 10am. This is the GT3 RS: standard car on slick tyres. VERY EXCITED." -- Chris Harris


"It's even got a number plate!" -- Chris Harris


"...shares a garage with the Manthay GT3R" -- Chris Harris


"GT3 R Hybrid has the most bizarre front camber setting ever. Seems to be very quick too." -- Chris Harris

Some pics from Saturday ...

via pistonheads

Porsche ambassador and test driver - and double World Rally Champion - Walter Röhrl will compete in the Nürburgring 24 hour race in Germany on May 15/16 in a Porsche 911 GT3 RS, and British motoring journalist and race driver Chris Harris will be joining the German motor sport legend in the Porsche factory-supported team.

In a driver line-up that mixes youth with experience, 35-year old Chris will be sharing the driving with Röhrl (63) and also former German Touring Car Championship driver Roland Asch (59) and fellow motoring writer Horst von Saurma (55). All drivers know the Nürburgring Nordschleife like the backs of their hands and have contested Germany’s greatest long distance motor race several times.

2007 in the cockpit of a Porsche 911 GT3 Cup race car. During the 2008 season, Harris finished in tenth place with a 911 at the Nürburgring long distance championship (VLN). His 911 racing experience also includes two guest appearances in the Porsche Carrera Cup Great Britain, where he scored sixth and seventh place finishes.

"I am thrilled and honoured at the prospect not only of representing Porsche in this great race but also driving alongside Walter Röhrl, a driver who has been a hero of mine for many years," said Chris, who is preparing for the endurance race with the assistance of the Porsche Human Performance Centre at Silverstone.

Double German Touring Car vice-champion Roland Asch has tackled the 24 hour event in the Eifel Mountains more than a dozen times. In 2004 he secured fifth overall. The foundation for Asch’s career was laid in Porsche single marque race championships. Contesting the Porsche 944 Turbo Cup, the German proved to be virtually unbeatable, winning the Championship three times straight. In 1991, he claimed the Championship title of the Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland. Already in the 2010 season, Asch has a race track marathon behind him, contesting the Dubai 24 hour race where he fought long and hard for the lead at the wheel of a Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, until his retirement.

At his debut race in 1987, Horst von Saurma was Asch’s teammate in the 944 Turbo Cup. It didn’t take long for the Nürburgring-Nordschleife to become the favourite circuit of the Editor-in-Chief of the specialist motoring magazine Sport Auto. Since 1988, von Saurma has contested the 24 hour classic twenty times. In 2001, the 55-year-old shared the cockpit of a Porsche 911 GT3 R with a line-up that included Porsche works driver Timo Bernhard. As a journalist, he regularly conducts tests on the Nordschleife and in 2004 even set a lap record with a Porsche Carrera GT.

In preparation for the 24 hour marathon, Röhrl and his fellow racers aim to contest two VLN races with their 450 hp Porsche 911 GT3 RS. "I’m sure we will quickly familiarise ourselves with the track and the car," said a confident Röhrl, who last raced in the Nurburgring 24 Hours in 1993. "We’ll need to practice our pit stops. After all, it was 17 years ago that I last made a driver change at race speed."

Posted via web from dedeporsche's posterous

Preparations for the racing comeback of Walter Röhrl (63) at the Nürburgring 24 hour race are at full revs.

Nürburgring 24 Hour Race: Specialists support Walter Röhrl at Nordschleife comeback

rohrl1

Stuttgart. Preparations for the racing comeback of Walter Röhrl (63) at the Nürburgring 24 hour race are at full revs. During a seat fitting at the Weissach Motorsport Centre, the double WRC champion met the teammates with which he will share the cockpit of the standard Porsche 911 GT3 RS on 15th and 16th May. Former DTM pilot Roland Asch (59) as well as journalists Horst von Saurma-Jeltsch (55) and Chris Harris (35) know the Nürburgring-Nordschleife like the backs of their hands and have contested Germany’s greatest long distance race several times.

asch_gt3a

Double DTM vice-champion Roland Asch has tackled the 24 hour event in the Eifel more than a dozen times. In 2004 he secured fifth overall. The foundation for Asch’s career was laid in the Porsche brand trophy series. Contesting the Porsche 944 Turbo Cup, the Swabian proved to be virtually unbeatable, winning the championship three times straight. In 1991, he claimed the championship title of the Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland. Already in the 2010 season, Roland Asch has a race track marathon behind him: At the wheel of a Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, he contested the Dubai 24 hour race where he fought long and hard for the lead until his retirement.

At his debut race in 1987, Horst von Saurma-Jeltsch was Asch’s teammate in the 944 Turbo Cup. It didn’t take long for the Nürburgring-Nordschleife to become the favourite circuit of the editor-in-chief of the specialist magazine “sport auto”. Since 1988, Horst von Saurma-Jeltsch has contested the 24 hour classic twenty times. In 2001, the 55-year-old shared the cockpit of a Porsche 911 GT3 R with a line-up that included Porsche works driver Timo Bernhard. As a journalist, he regular conducts tests on the Nordschleife and in 2004 even set a lap record with a Porsche Carrera GT.

chris_harris1

British motorsport journalist Chris Harris got his first taste of the Nordschleife in 1999. Since then he has contested the 24 hour race four times, most recently in 2007 in the cockpit of a Porsche 911 GT3 Cup. During the 2008 season, Harris yielded tenth place with a 911 at the Nürburgring long distance championship (VLN). At two guest appearances in the Carrera Cup Great Britain, he brought home sixth and seventh place.

rohrls_gt3a

In preparation for the 24 hour marathon, Röhrl and his fellow racers aim to contest two VLN races with their 450 hp Porsche 911 GT3 RS. “I’m sure we will quickly familiarise ourselves with the track and the car,” said a confident Röhrl. “We’ll need to practice our pit stops. After all, it was 17 years ago that I last made a driver change at race speed.”

Courtesy Porsche AG

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Joplin's Porsche Gets the Petersen Automotive Museum Treatment

It'll be on display, very soon, downtown. 

By ALYSIA GRAY PAINTER

Tue, Mar 23, 2010

Grammy Museum

We're just wondering if the Grammy Museum phoned up the Petersen Automotive Museum and asked for tips on the whole moving-a-giant-motorized-machine-into-a-museum deal.

Because Janis Joplin's famous and memorably painted 1965 Porsche pulled up to the music museum early on Tuesday, March 23. It'll be part of a big Joplin/Hendrix/Doors exhibit that's due to open on Monday, April 5.

Most places would just round up a few costumes, maybe a signed LP or two, for an exhibit. But not the Grammy people. Oh no. They go out. All. Out. Get us a car! Yes! We said car! (Maybe we're paraphrasing there.)

The museum tweeted the pic and we had to share, because the colorful Porsche sitting outside the museum is our favorite picture of the day. Which is saying a lot. Because we, like you, having access to the Internet, see approximately 758 images by 9 a.m.

Lady Joplin, nice wheels. We can almost picture you zipping down PCH, carefree and all Bobby McGee'd.

Petersen Automotive Museum located at: 6060 Wilshire Blvd.(at Fairfax,) Los Angeles, CA 90036

Posted via web from dedeporsche's posterous

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