The Porsche logo was based on the Free People’s State of Württemberg’s coat of arms, which is why it comes in the shape of a crest — to align with the traditions of Württemberg-Baden. Stuttgart used horses in its city seal, inspiring Porsche to make a black horse the centerpiece of its logo which represents power and the seal of Stuttgart.
The Porsche name has become synonymous with sports cars and race cars because that is what company founders Ferdinand Porsche and his son Ferdinand (“Ferry”) set out to build when they first set up shop with 200 workers in 1948.
While it is currently a thriving brand under the Volkswagen Automotive Group, standing alongside Lamborghini, Audi, and Bugatti this car company has a colorful history and iconic cars list that goes way deeper than most Cayenne, Macan and Panamera buyers will ever know.
Ferdinand Porsche’s first iconic vehicle was not under his own marque, but what we all know as “Volkswagen” or “The People’s Car”. The Volkswagen Beetle was his creation and was the stepping stone to a racing history with the 911 as a cornerstone. World War II changed things and the man was ousted out of the Volkswagen company, forcing him and his son to form their own car company, Porsche.
There first hit was the 356. Though sporting just 40 horsepower from a rear-mounted, slightly souped-up Beetle engine, the first Porsche quickly made its mark with agile handling, as well as attributes almost unknown among sportscars of the day — comfort and reliability. Porsche introduced its own engines in the mid-1950s, along with more powerful versions of the 356. After the 356 came a true legend among modern automobiles, the Porsche 911. Ahead of its time when introduced in 1964, the rear-engine 911 has continued to evolve since then and is considered by most the ultimate sports car.
Porsche introduced a series of front-engine models in the 1970s, starting with the four-cylinder 924 (1976) and the unrelated 928 powered by the company’s first V-8 engine (1978). From the 924 sprang the more powerful and sophisticated 944 and 944 Turbo, and finally the 968 in the early ‘90s. Porsche retired both the 968 and 928 in 1995 to focus on development of the rear-engine 911 and mid-engine Boxster.
Porsche is also synonymous with racing, and Porsche cars began competing almost immediately. To date, Porsche cars have won an estimated 24,000 auto races around the world, including more than 50 class wins at Le Mans. You can see why the way people talk about Porsche with reverence. No other car company has the same credentials. No other car company has so many hits. Porsche has built some of the most amazing cars ever.
From its inception, the Porsche brand name was one associated with luxury and racecars, a tradition that has stood the test of time over the ages. The founder, Ferdinand Porsche, was once the chief engineer at Mercedes-Benz, and he even spent time working on Volkswagen vehicles. Porsche began his own company in 1931, naming the company after himself when it was incorporated. After that, Porsche began producing vehicles that would go on to become legendary for their performance and quality.
The very first Porsche nameplate was designed based on the same platform as the VW Beetle. Named the ‘Porsche 64’ and released in 1938, the model’s unique design and upscale vibe immediately caught on with buyers. Of course, the company’s growth was impeded when the war began, forcing Porsche to develop tanks instead of automobiles. However, the company bounced back as early as 1947, when the Grand Prix racing car made its debut. Shortly after, in ‘48, Ferdinand’s son Ferry Porsche created the company’s first-ever sports car – the 356.
By the 60s, the Porsche family was designing and producing popular sports cars that debuted with much anticipation at the Frankfurt International Auto Show every year. Then, in 1964, a legend was born when the first-ever Porsche 911 made its first splash in the industry. Over the next few decades, Porsche continued to expand and innovate in its lineup, until the Porsche 911 Turbo released in 1995 was the first vehicle to ever have onboard computer diagnosis, something that would revolutionize the auto service industry.
Still to this day, Porsche has maintained its status in the industry as a producer of unparalleled supercars and racing innovations. While it has many nameplates besides just the Porsche 911, the 911 is perhaps the most iconic and versatile model under the brand’s name, with over twenty-one different models and seven trim levels.