50 Years of Porsche Sports Cars

Porsche Sports Car Innovations and Remarkable Porsche Developments

1998
1948

The very first Porsche – the 356 series No 1 – already features an aluminium bodyshell, an aluminium crankcase and cylinder heads.

1950

Porsche builds a tractor with a two-cylinder aluminium engine (Type AP 17).

1951

Porsche introduces ring synchromesh technology and registers more than 100 patents. By 1968 more than one million transmissions based on this Porsche technology were built each year the world over.

1952

Chrome-plated aluminium cylinders in the 1.3-litre 356 power unit. Advantage: wear-free cylinder liners with good lubrication.

1954

Porsche synchronmesh in all Grand Prix racing cars.

1955

1.6-litre (Type 678) aeroengine.

First German car with a curved laminated glass windscreen: the Porsche 356 Speedster.

Introduction of the vertical shaft (the Type 547 Fuhrmann engine), a four-cylinder boxer displacing 1.5 litres and developing 100 bhp at 6200 rpm.

1956

550 A Spyder, first overall win in the Targa Florio.

1962

Porsche 356 B optionally available with three-point seat belts and backrest arrest mechanism.

Formula 1 Type 804: 1.5-litre 8-cylinder power unit, titanium connecting rods, gas-pressure shock absorbers, inner-action disc brakes.

First Grand Prix win.

Carrera 2 with inner-action disc brakes.

1964

Porsche 904 with streamlined plastic bodyshell, drag coefficient 0.33.

1965

911 Targa safety cabriolet.

1966

First drop safety test in Zuffenhausen with the Porsche 904.

First emission test rig in Europe approved by the US Environmental Protection Agency for the California emission test.

Porsche 906 racing car with front and rear spoilers.

Porsche 911 S 2.0, world’s first production car with inner-vented brake discs.

1968

Fuel injection and high-tension ignition introduced as standard features.

Porsche 907 scores the Company’s first overall win in the 24 Hours of Daytona .

909 hill-climb spyder: 430 kg, 275 bhp, suspension springs and fuel tank made of titanium, adjustable rear spoiler and berylium brake discs.

910 spyder wins the European Hill-Climb Championship.

911 T wins Porsche’s first World Rally Championship and first overall win in the Monte Carlo Rally.

1969

ABS tests in a 908/02 racing car.

908 and 917 racing cars win Porsche’s first Sports Car World Championship.

1970

914-6 fitted as standard with magnesium rims.

917 K 4.5-litre scores Porsche’s first overall win in Le Mans.

Introduction of perforated brake discs in the 908/3.

1971

917 racing car with magnesium spaceframe and adjustable anti-roll bar.

First acceleration sledge in Weissach.

Hot-galvanised floor panels.

1972

Rollover and side-impact tests with the Porsche 911.

Overall CanAm win with the Porsche 917-10 (12-cylinder turbocharged engine, 1000 bhp), the most powerful racing car to date.

911 Carrera RS first production car with front and rear spoiler (launch).

1973

Long-life car research project presented at the Frankfurt Motor Show.

First crash facility with preliminary tests in Weissach.

Inertia-reel three-point seat belts fitted as standard.

1974

World’s first production sports car with exhaust gas turbocharger: Porsche 911 Turbo with contact-free ignition.

1975

Porsche becomes the world’s first carmaker to introduce the hot-galvanised bodyshell as standard.

1976

Start of 924 production, overall production volume of the four-cylinder model series 325, 231 units (924, 944, 968).

Two World Championships (Group 5 and Group 6) with the 935 and 936 racing cars.

1977

Start of production of the Porsche 928 with soft front and rear ends, Weissach axle, lightalloy V8 power unit, Transaxle configuration, defect display, 1978 Car of the Year, total production of the 8-cylinder model series 61,000 units.

Brake system with four-piston brake callipers and perforated brake discs standard on the 911 Turbo.

1980

Development of an all-new cockpit layout for the Airbus.

Fenders made of glass-fibre-reinforced polyurethane standard on the 924 Carrera GT.

Tyre pressure control system in the Porsche 924 GTP Le Mans.

1981

Start of 944 production featuring electronic fuel injection (Motronic), first heated oxygen sensor worldwide.

SAVE ambulance (Swift Ambulance Vital Emergency).

Porsche aeroengine. Advantages: economy, single-stick operation, low noise level and minimum burden on the environment. Reliability of engine demonstrated by round-theworld flight to 55 countries, covering a total distance of more than 100,000 km.

TAG turbo engine made by Porsche (assignment by the TAG Group) for Formula 1: 1.5-litre V6 turbocharged power unit, winner of the 1984, 1985 and 1986 Formula 1 World Championships.

1982

Development of the double-clutch transmission raced in 1985 in the Group C 956 racing car, underfloor with ground effect, fully electronic engine management (Motronic), Denloc safety racing tyres, hollow-spoke rims with tyre pressure control system and six-cylinder horizontally-opposed turbocharged engine, combined air/ water cooling introduced later, cylinder head and cylinders welded to one another, winner of the World Endurance Championship (Group C).

1983

Start of 959 development with program-controlled four-wheel drive, damper control and self-levelling, plastic skin, turbocharged engine with register-type turbochargers and intercooler, titanium connecting rods, six-speed gearbox.

1984

Offset crash tests with 50 per cent offset angle.

Heated oxygen sensor in all Porsche models worldwide.

All Porsche cars fitted as standard with activated carbon filter.

Manually controlled four-wheel drive in the Porsche 953 (based on the 911), first overall win in the Paris-Dakar Rally.

1985

Door reinforcement worldwide.

Sekuriflex windscreen.

Four-valve technology standard on the 928 S with catalytic converter.

Marine engine for racing boats, 8-cylinder bi-turbo engine (based on the 928), max output 700 bhp plus.

Ceramic portliners in the 944 Turbo.

ABS standard in the Porsche 928 S.

1986

Porsche 944 Turbo first European car fitted as standard with driver and front passenger airbags for the USA.

Second crash test facility in Weissach.

Opening of the Weissach wind tunnel with slotted walls and boundary layer extraction.

First racing series with catalyst cars: 944 Turbo Cup.

911 Carrera with noise encapsulation in Switzerland and Australia.

Catalytic converter standard in all model series (except 911 Turbo).

1988

Carrera 4 with four-wheel drive, metal-based catalytic converter, retractable rear spoiler, recyclable front and rear bumpers, engine with double ignition, aerodynamically optimised underfloor, electrothermal sensor for fuel level indicator.

928 S4 with TPC (Tyre Pressure Control) and PLSD (Porsche Limited Slip Differential).

1989

911 Carrera 2 with Tiptronic.

Driver and front passenger airbags standard in all US models.

1990

All Porsche cars with asbestos-free brake pads, clutch linings and seals.

911 engine with plastic intake manifold.

1991

Porsche becomes first German manufacturer to fit all left-hand-drive models with driver and front passenger airbags as standard.

Engine of the 968 with Variocam camshaft adjustment (electrohydraulic), bypass intake manifold and brake system with optimised cooling air flow.

High-torque three-litre normal-aspiration engine in production cars.

928 GTS with two-stage resonance-type intake manifold.

Gradual changeover to water-soluble metallic paint.

Porsche cars largely free of cadmium.

1992

System detecting frictional engagement of road and tyres developed as part of the European PROMETHEUS research programme.

Porsche cars largely CFC-free (foam plastics, air conditioning).

1993

Multi-link rear axle in lightweight construction with subframe in 911 Carrera.

1994

Tiptronic S double-function transmission with driver-adaptive control, gears shifted from steering wheel.

Driver-dynamic four-wheel-drive system consisting of four-wheel drive, automatic brake differential and driving-dynamic limited-slip differential in 911 Carrera 4.

Porsche becomes the first manufacturer to introduce water-based paint for repair/touch-up purposes.

Automatic cruise and distance control system developed as part of the European PROMETHEUS research programme.

1995

911 Turbo with bi-turbo engine, first car worldwide fitted as standard with On-Board Diagnosis II, hollow-welded 18-inch hollow-spoke wheels (a Porsche patent), lightweight spoiler cover in advanced RTM technology.

New Targa roof concept with electrically operated, extra-large glass roof.

911 Carrera with Variocam system (combined with a two-stage resonance intake manifold).

1996

Introduction of the mid-engined Boxster with electrically operated soft roof open/closing in 12 seconds and the largest luggage compartment of all roadsters in the market. High standard of safety.

1997

Presentation and production start of the all-new 911 Carrera with water-cooled six-cylinder boxer engine at the rear. Consistent lightweight construction.

1998

Presentation of the 911 Cabriolet, sidebags with 30 litres volume on each side fitted as standard. One of the safest convertibles in the world.