Around 15,000 people visited the two-day festival over the weekend – more than twice as many as last year. This year’s festival was themed as the ‘Icons of Porsche, Safari Edition’, aligning with the taste for off-road adventure of fans and enthusiasts from the Middle East region. The second staging of the popular festival was held at ‘The Slab’ in the Dubai Design District (D3) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates on 26 and 27 November 2022, beside the spectacular skyline of downtown Dubai.
The expanded 31,000 square foot site hosted numerous cars, displayed amongst five different zones, each presenting a different theme and catering for the diverse audience in attendance. The 2023 edition of the Icons of Porsche festival, which will celebrate 75 years of Porsche Sportscars, is planned to be held on 18-19 November 2023.
“Everyone involved in Icons of Porsche is overwhelmed by the increased number of visitors that attended this year’s festival,” said Dr. Manfred Bräunl, Chief Executive Officer of Porsche Middle East and Africa.
“In just two years Icons of Porsche has grown from nothing to become the largest car festival in the Middle East. This shows just how strong the Porsche community is in this region. It is fascinating to see the excitement amongst the large and diverse crowd in attendance. In true festival style, there are all kinds of topics on display for people to see and enjoy. I am especially pleased to see interest in Icons of Porsche growing not only across the entire region, but also around the world. We have had many tourists, journalists and Porsche car club members from Europe and other continents attend this year. This encourages us to keep growing the event even further. Icons of Porsche shows how strong the passion for Porsche is among people of all ages. This is why we have announced the 2023 date, so that everyone can set this weekend in their calendars a full 12 months in advance. The mix of classic cars, art and culture on display at Icons of Porsche seems to be a very good fit, not only for the Porsche brand, but also for this region. It was great not only to have so many fans and enthusiasts in attendance, but also many key people from our Porsche importers across the Middle East, Africa and India region. I must thank all of the staff involved in making this event such a success, and especially acknowledge our importers in Abu Dhabi and Dubai for their commitment to making this festival such a success.”
The festival hosted the regional premiere of the 911 Dakar, 911 GT3 RS and 911 Sport Classic. Racing legends such as Mark Webber, Timo Bernhard and six-times Le Mans 24 Hour winner Jacky Ickx were present. Fans were able to experience thrilling rides in the latest Cayenne on a purpose-built off-road track within the event precinct. Recently restored first-generation Cayenne were also on display, as part of the region’s celebration of 20 Years of Cayenne.
Camel comes to life at Icons of Porsche
Icons of Porsche also saw the unveiling of the ‘Safari Camel’, the ‘in-real-life’ recreation of a famous artwork by renowned digital artist Chris Labrooy. The ‘Safari Camel’ was one of the most popular features of the festival, attracting fans of all kinds. The ‘Safari Camel’ was one of several spectacular artworks on display at Icons of Porsche.
Porsche Museum comes to Dubai
Four classic sportscars from the Porsche Museum made the trip from Stuttgart to Dubai for Icons of Porsche this year; 1986 Porsche 959 Paris-Dakar, 1981 Porsche 911 C 5 (SC) San Remo, 1981 Porsche 924 GTS Rallye and the 1978 Porsche 911 SC Safari.
Just as impressive was the cast of cars from the region on show. Many cars from local Middle Eastern owners were display around the festival’s five precincts. On top of this, over numerous cars from Porsche owners, including many arriving in arranged convoys organised by Porsche clubs, were parked in the event precinct.
About Chris Labrooy
After graduating from the RCA with an MA in design products, Chris first began to use 3D software as a simple tool to visualize ideas for furniture. As 3D technology and hardware evolved, Chris saw an opportunity to explore CGI as a creative medium, through which he found the freedom to subvert and twist familiar everyday objects into new typographic and sculptural forms. With particular obsessions for automobiles, Chris creates projects that convey his unique and enthusiastic perspective on global car culture. Based in Scotland, Chris Labrooy’s work can be seen across the UK, Europe, and the United States.