Porsche Car Manufacturers

Porsche automobiles have long been counted among the world's most prestigious and popular due in large part to the brand's single-minded devotion to handling and performance
Porsche automobiles have long been counted among the world's most prestigious and popular--due in large part to the brand's single-minded devotion to handling and performance. Some of the brand's appeal stems from the uniqueness of its vehicles, which offer dramatically different styling and one-of-a-kind technology. The brand is owned by Porsche SE, and a majority share of the company remains in the hands of the Porsche and Piëch families.

The company was founded in 1931 by Dr. Ferdinand Porsche. Porsche had been an engineer for Daimler-Benz and was a significant player in the development of the Mercedes SS and SSK sports cars, but he left to form his own company in the early 1930s. Porsche's new enterprise initially performed consulting and design work for vehicle manufacturers.

One of its early achievements was the design of the Volkswagen Beetle for the German government in the mid 1930s. In 1939, Porsche built the Porsche 64 on the Beetle platform, beginning a practice that would continue until the early 1950s.

Porsche was heavily involved in wartime production during World War II, and after the hostilities had ended Ferdinand was arrested for war crimes and imprisoned. He passed away in 1951. While Ferdinand was in prison, his son, Ferry Porsche, developed the Porsche 356, utilizing a Volkswagen body pan and running gear. The car gained a solid enthusiast following and remained in production until 1965.

Porsche Car Manufacturers
Stuttgart, Germany (1931)
Stuttgart, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
Ferdinand Porsche
The 911, introduced in 1963, is the best known and most beloved Porsche of all time. Like its predecessor, it utilized the air-cooled rear-engine configuration pioneered by Volkswagen. But in place of the earlier Porsche's four-cylinder engine, the new machine packed a potent "boxer" six cylinder. The 911 has gone through many iterations and continues in production to this day, although not all variants were designated as 911 models. Among the most noteworthy were the 911 Turbo of 1974 to 1989 and the 911 Cabriolet of 1983. Today's version of this classic is designated 997. The current all-wheel-drive turbo model can reach a top speed of 193 mph.

Other Porsche offerings of the 1970s and 1980s--the 914, 924, 928 and 944 — found success, with the well-made and precise-handling 944 drawing the most accolades. But none achieved the success of the 911 and its variants.

Today, Porsche offers a lower-cost alternative to its top-of-the-line sports cars, the Cayman and its roadster sibling, Boxster, which helped rejuvenate the brand in the late 1990s and early 2000s. The carmaker has also brought the Cayenne SUV on board, while making big waves in the world of high performance with its limited-production mid-engine, 605-horspower, 205-mph Carrera GT. That's a powerful way to reserve a place for the brand near the top of the automotive world.

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