The lower levels of the Porsche Experience Center Atlanta (PEC ATL) are home to an ever-changing array of some of our most precious and exciting cars from the roads and the track. A new initiative allows enthusiasts to see the collection, even if it’s not possible to visit in person right now.
Inside the two-story Heritage Gallery, you’ll find curated exhibits of rare and significant cars as well as privately owned vehicles in for service at the Porsche Classic Factory Restoration workshop. The current displays include the 20th anniversary of the Porsche Track Experience and a celebration of the fan favorite GT race cars – in total the collection features an estimated combined 3,500 hp of some of the most powerful and dynamic cars Porsche has ever created. You’re invited to take a virtual tour and explore Porsche’s heritage highlights.
1955 Porsche 550 Spyder
Originally prepared to show its capabilities on track, the Porsche Werks Factory team - for the first time in company history - transported this very car via air fright to Caracas, Venezuela, for the Sportscar Grand Prix of Caracas. In 1955, the factory branded this effort ‘Operation Caracas’.
Driver Huschke von Hanstein drove the 550-0030 to a class victory, and as one of the most popular Factory Werks drivers in his day, von Hanstein remained in North America after the race to assist importer and salesman Maxwell Hoffman in beginning the first U.S. driver training for Porsche. Along with fellow drivers Herbert Linge and Wolfgang von Trips, the team facilitated the first stateside course with the Porsche Club of America in Thompson, Connecticut, in March 1956. The cars included, of course, the 550 Spyder model as shown in the archival photo with von Trips at the wheel.
When the Brumos Collection acquired 550-0030, they appropriately labeled it with a Florida license plate “Huschke” for the man who assisted in creating the original Porsche driving experience in North America.
1999 Porsche 911 Carrera (996)
With a fleet of 16 Porsche 911 (996) models, the Porsche Driving Experience was born at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta in 2000. The program is currently celebrating its 20th anniversary, now named ‘Porsche Track Experience’.
The car on display in the Heritage Gallery is a 1999 Porsche 911 Carrera. This particular generation of 911 marked the shift from air-cooled to water-cooled, but the iconic flat-six engine layout remained the same, producing 296 hp. This exact vehicle was ordered by the Brumos Porsche dealership and was driven by legendary racer Hurley Haywood. Since it was acquired by its current owner, the car has covered more than 100,000 miles and has even driven on-track parade laps before the 24 Hours of Le Mans. It joins the Heritage Gallery sporting the same graphics used in early advertisement for the Porsche Track Experience.
2008 Porsche Cayenne
The Porsche Cayenne was a game changer when it was launched and truly put the “Sport” in Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV). The introduction of the new model to the North American market coincided with a pivotal moment for Porsche Track Experience as well when the program relocated to the newly opened Barber Motorsports Park, AL, in 2003. Not only did this automotive playground offer first-class facilities and a full racing circuit – it also provided the perfect challenge for something no road-going Porsche had been built to tackle before: an off-road course. Following the successful launch of the Cayenne, Porsche Track Experience stayed at Barber Motorsports Park, which has been home to the driving school ever since. Porsche Cayenne off-road driving remains part of the curriculum today.
2013 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (997.2)
In 2011, Porsche Track Experience took the depth and detail of the training available to a new level when the driving school began offering two-day programs in the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup race car. Not for the newcomer, nor the faint of heart, this course let qualified participants behind the wheel of a purpose-built track machine. The 3.8-liter engine develops 450 hp and the minimalist interior offers only the essentials in order to meet on-track safety requirements, decrease the weight and increase the speed.
Today, driver training in 911 GT3 Cup race cars are offered by Porsche Racing Experience.
2020 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S (992)
The eighth and latest generation of the iconic Porsche 911 was presented to the world in November 2018 on the eve of the Los Angeles Auto Show. The 3.0-liter flat-six turbocharged engine has been further developed to be more powerful than ever before, delivering 443 horsepower in the Carrera 4S model on display in the Heritage Gallery. Power is transferred to the wheels through an eight-speed dual-clutch (PDK) transmission. This car reaches 60 mph in just 3.2 seconds with the optional Sport Chrono Package and has a top track speed of 190 mph. It sits on display wearing the same livery that’s currently used for similar models at the Porsche Track Experience.
Porsche 911 GT1-inspired: 1999 Gunnar Racing G-99
The mid-1990s saw a renaissance in Gran Turismo (GT) racing, and in 1996, Porsche had enjoyed success with the 911 GT1, not least claiming the GT class victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The car on display was built as a tribute of the Porsche race car by Gunnar Racing in Florida - hence the name.
Unlike the Porsche 911 GT1, this car was originally constructed with an open cockpit to comply with American Le Mans Series racing regulations for the 2000 season. However, it ended up sitting idle until 2002, and the roof was then added when the rules were changed for Grand Am racing in 2003. Another key difference from the Porsche racer is the fact that the G-99 has a naturally aspirated 3.6-liter flat-six engine, as opposed to the GT1 which was twin-turbocharged. The Gunnar Racing G-99 is shown with a split livery that represents two notable races. The left side was worn at the Watkins Glen race in 2003 where drivers Kyle Petty, Gunnar Jeannette and Paul Newman finished 2nd in the GTS class. The yellow right side of the G-99 sports the yellow livery of Autosports Marketing as raced in the Daytona Finale by veteran Porsche racer Milt Minter, Gunnar Jeannette and Chad McQueen.
2019 Porsche 911 GT2 RS Clubsport
One of just 200 cars ever made, this Porsche 911 GT2 RS Clubsport is the racing version of the street-legal 911 GT2 RS. The road car and its single-seater track sibling share the same 3.8-liter flat-six twin-turbocharged engine that produces a mighty 700 hp. Inside, surrounded by a full safety cage, a Recaro® racing bucket seat keeps the driver firmly in place in front of a carbon fiber steering wheel from the 2019 Porsche 911 GT3 R. In typical racing fashion, the 911 GT2 RS Clubsport is focused on lightweight and hits the scale at just 3,064 pounds - 177 pounds less than the street-legal model. For maximum stopping power from the immense speeds this racer can achieve, it is equipped with six-piston aluminum monobloc racing calipers on the front axle in combination with 390 millimeter iron brake discs, while the rear axle is fitted with four-piston calipers and 380 millimeter discs.
2013 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup ANDIAL Edition
It’s not just the throwback Löwenbräu livery that separates this unique car from other 911 GT3 Cup models. Being one of only five ANDIAL Editions, it boasts a 4.0-liter engine instead of the 3.8 in the 911 GT3 Cup car it is based upon. The larger displacement combined with factory 911 GT3 R parts and ANDIAL gold emblem intake manifolds pushes power from 450 to 515 hp and 331 lb.-ft. of torque at a screaming 8,500 rpm.
ANDIAL was founded in 1975 by three German entrepreneurs in California and purchased by Porsche Motorsport North America in 2013. The first project that followed was the five 911 GT3 Cup ANDIAL Editions. All were presented with special liveries to commemorate cars that raced in the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) in the 1980s with engines - and, in one case, the entire car - built by ANDIAL. The #14 911 GT3 Cup presented here celebrates the Holbert Racing 962, which won back-to-back 24 Hour races at Daytona in 1986 and 1987. The other four liveries were Coca-Cola, BFGoodrich, Miller High Life and Valvoline.
2020 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport
The GT4 Clubsport is a “turnkey race car”. Take it to the track, climb in, buckle up, start the engine and go. The mid-mounted 3.8-liter flat-six engine develops 425hp and keeps going until 7,800 rpm. The driver and passenger doors are made of natural fiber composites, as is the fixed rear wing with gooseneck connection, integrated side blades and aluminum supports. Safety is front and center with a welded roll cage, removable roof section and six-point racing safety harness. In 2019, the model ran in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge and the SRO GT4 America Series. Like all other Porsche race cars in the U.S., the 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport is imported and distributed by Porsche Motorsport North America.