Porsche Canada is gearing up for some important milestones to commemorate the 75th
anniversary of the German manufacturer and the 60th
anniversary of its iconic 911.
While the 75th
anniversary is June 8, Porsche has a series of events to celebrate both dates.
Porsche launched the anniversaries in January in Berlin with the launch of the Vision 357 Concept car. It’s a tribute to Porsche’s original sports car, the 356.
“It pays homage to Ferry Porsche’s dream of a sports car,” Porsche Cars Canada Ltd. President John Cappella said. “It’s a really cool-looking car based upon a GT4 RS. You’re going to see throughout the coming weeks and months a lot of different initiatives both globally and in Canada. We have quite a bit of time between now and June to do all sorts of celebrations.
“This is not a celebration of one day. This is much more of a big milestone where we want to do many things to celebrate. It will make up a big portion of the various activities we are doing throughout the year. Even some of the usual things we do, we’re trying to put a 75-year spin on it. The product lineup has grown tremendously from that 356.”
The 2023 Canadian International AutoShow (CIAS) will feature a special Porsche display assembled by Cobble Beach Classics. Cobble Beach normally has a display of various vintage brands at the show, but this year it’s done something new to celebrate Porsche’s 75th
anniversary. Sixteen classic models will be on display, including a 1969 917 Long Tail that is a restoration of the 005 car that debuted at the 1,000-kilometre race at the Spa on May 11, 1969, and captured the pole. The car has been restored with most of its natural parts. The vehicle’s owner, race driver, and entrepreneur, David Seabrooke, is originally from Peterborough and now lives in California.
The other cars on display: 1952 356 Pre A; 1959 Roadster; 1962 356 Roadster Janis Joplin tribute car; 1964 904; 1970 911 ST lightweight; 1981 924 GTR; 1984 928S; 1987 959; 1988 911 Turbo Slantnose (930); 1996 993 Twin Turbo; 2004 996 GT3 RS; 2006 Carrera GT; 2015 918 Spyder; 2021 911 Targa Heritage design.
“With its smooth, flowing lines and distinctive ‘frog eye’ headlights, the Porsche brand is instantly recognizable,” said Rob McLeese, Founder and Show Chair of Cobble Beach Concours d’Elegance. “From the first Porsche that rolled off the assembly line in 1948, it is a car that has made a difference. We are excited to showcase a selection of some of the most important and rare Porsche’s ever produced.”
Cappella said the display was done in conjunction with Cobble Beach Classics to celebrate 75 years of Porsche rather than using a space to showcase its new vehicles.
“They’ve been great to work with and have done a great job,” Cappella said. “It’s probably one of the most extensive collections of classic Porsche’s that I’ve seen in one room. For us at Porsche Canada, the display at the Canadian International AutoShow is sort of our kickoff. We’re going to start releasing more and more information on the various activities we’re going to be partaking in Canada.”
Cappella said the collection will also feature the Taycan GTS Sport Turismo
, the brand’s first fully-electric car, to show where Porsche began and where it has evolved.
It’s an exciting time for the 47-year-old, Toronto-born John Cappella, who was appointed as Porsche Cars Canada’s President in September. He has been with the company since May 2011, most recently in the U.S.
“I’ve been very fortunate with Porsche,” Cappella said. “I’ve had more than a 10-year career with Porsche and I’ve had a lot of great jobs. So being back in Canada when we’re about to kick of the 75-year anniversary and the 60-year anniversary for the 911, I’m a very lucky guy. There’s a lot of exciting things in the marketplace right now, in the industry, there’s a lot of developments and changes, so it’s absolutely exciting.”