The origins of Porsche

Having been employed in various ­companies for a long time, Ferdinand Porsche (1875–1951) set up on his own in 1930. In the beginning he struggled with high production costs as his developments for Zündapp, Wanderer and NSU among others failed to go into series production. In 1933 the development of the Grand Prix racing car for the Auto Union, equipped with a 16-cylinder mid-engine was hugely successful.

Porsche’s economic upturn was heralded by the design of the VW Beetle from 1934 onwards. In 1937, on the present site at Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen, development of the people’s tractor got underway.The first car to be called Porsche – the 356 No. 1 Roadster – was built in 1947. Ferdinand Porsche’s son, Ferry Porsche, took over the company chair in 1947. In 1963, the company’s most famous model, the 911, replaced the Porsche 356.

The Porsche coat of arms, which adorns every new vehicle produced by the company, illustrates its strong ties with Stuttgart. Ferry Porsche had it designed in 1952. It depicts the Stuttgart heraldic ­animal, the state coat of arms of the former Free People’s State of Wuerttemberg and the words “Porsche” and “Stuttgart”.

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Porsche 550 Spyder, 1955 at the Mile Miglia

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The designer Ferdinand Porsche

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Three legends: VW Beetle, Porsche 360 Cisitalia, Porsche 356 Roadster


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