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Porsche Celebrates 70 Years at the Canadian International Auto Show

Canada is a very significant market for the German performance brand, so they chose Toronto to host the first in a series of global events celebrating 70 years of the brand.

Gary Grant By: Gary Grant February 21, 2018

Judging from the line-ups to descend the escalators to the basement, the 100 level of the Metro Toronto Convention Centre is possibly the most exciting space for enthusiasts at this year’s Canadian International Autoshow. The Auto Exotica display is a big draw for many, but for others, myself included, the “70 years of Porsche” display is one of the highlights of the show.

Canada is a very significant market for the German performance brand, so they chose Toronto to host the first in a series of global events celebrating 70 years of the brand.

To open the event, Porsche brought along Achim Stejskal, who is Director of the Porsche Museum and responsible for global heritage communications for the Porsche brand.

Achim Stejskal

The executive explains that the Porsche brand was born in 1948 when Dr. Porsche said that he looked around and could not find the car that he dreamed of, so he decided to build it himself. The car Porsche envisioned would be a light weight two seater sports car, powered by a tuned Volkswagen engine. That vision would become the first Porsche Speedster, followed by the coupe version just one week later.

Porsche is well known for its penchant for keeping old cars on display for the faithful to see.

Stejskal assures me that “we do more than just polish old cars” at the museum. In total, the museum display collection includes about 620 cars, dating back as far as 1898, while as many as 1000 cars are touring around the world at any given time. Unlike many motoring museums however, Stejskal’s team ensures that all of the vehicles are actual driving examples.

Like many enthusiasts today, Stejskal admits to preferring cars with dents and dirt, showing the scars of life, to highly polished perfect cars. Asked the all important question, Stejskal says the car from the collection he would most like to have in his own garage is a super rare 904 Carrera GTS with an 8-cylinder engine.

 The sky is full of cranes around Zuffenhausen, Stejskal says, as the factory is being greatly expanded in preparation for the commencement of production of the Mission E, which will be Porsche’s entry into the all electric vehicle marketplace. Mission E is said to be able to receive up to 85 per cent of a full charge in just 15 minutes, have a 500 km range and yet also provide performance which is in line with what Porsche buyers expect.

 The display in Toronto embodies the spirit of the brand beginning with a 356 and leading up to the future, with a model of the Mission E electric concept car which is an indicator of the future of the brand. They are joined by a lovely, blue 912, which was sort of an entry level 911 from the Sixties, which was powered by a 4-cylinder engine in place of the usual 6.

porsche 35670 years of porsche

 The next generation is represented by a stunning 911 Turbo, with just 50 KM on the odometer which sits next to the 5.7L V10 powered Carrera GT. The pinnacle of today’s hybrid technology is on display in the form of a 918 Spyder in the iconic Gulf livery.

 Stejskal announced that the first Porsche, model 356 #1, which is estimated to be worth in the neighbourhood of $4-$7 Million, will be returning to Toronto later this year as part of the ongoing celebration.

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