27 participating cars, tens of thousands of enthusiastic spectators and millions of photos on the Internet: That was the Top City Classic Rally China. Porsche sent the 911 SC Targa from 1981 and a 911 Carrera 3.2 Cabriolet built in 1985 to the starting line as brand ambassadors on wheels.

The classic car rally officially started with a parade in Beijing, not far from the Ming tombs. Then the convoy proceeded along broad avenues, past apple and peach plantations across several passes in the mountainous region to the north west of the capital with its 21 million inhabitants. The participants completed a 1,000 km tour which included visits to the Great Wall of China and then to the city of Zhangjiakou, which recently applied to organise the 2022 Winter Olympic Games.

Drivers in a school canteen

The second stage finally led to Shanghai where tens of thousands of spectators cheered jubilantly. During a joint lunch in a school canteen, the young Chinese schoolchildren showed their delight at the unusual visit of the rally drivers. When the drivers left, they presented them with paintings of the cars they had made themselves.

"It was very impressive to see the reactions of people along the way," said Head of the Porsche Museum, Achim Stejskal, who was there himself. "Our participation in this event was another important step for us to arouse fascination for sports cars and raise the image of the Porsche brand in China through history."

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