Track driving, heritage displays, fine dining, shopping and more – all set in an enthusiast atmosphere. The Porsche Experience Centers (PECs) in Atlanta, GA, and Los Angeles, CA, are known as brand embassies for good reason. It’s a long way from Germany to America, but in a market that has stronger ties to the Stuttgart-based sports car manufacturer than most, the PECs are a home away from home. And the doors are open for all visitors.
Since the 2015 opening in Atlanta, with L.A. following in 2017, the two Porsche Experience Centers have welcomed more than 450,000 visitors and become destinations in their own right. While guests travel from different states, and even countries, they have one thing in common: they are about to be immersed in all things Porsche.
The main attraction at both PECs is the driving experience: 90 minutes with you behind the wheel of a Porsche of your own choice. A trained instructor is at your side at all times to make sure you extract the most from the car - and yourself. The Atlanta and L.A. locations both feature a driver development track designed to mimic a winding country road. The track surrounds different modules, including a wet skid pad, an acceleration straight and even an off-road course, just to name a few. Carving corners, catching slides or going for a full throttle “Launch Control” over and over; how you spend the time is up to you. Demonstration laps are also available where the instructor takes the driver’s seat and is able to show Porsche performance at the limit.
Inside, a café is ready to keep accompanying guests refreshed, and one floor above, visitors will find fine dining with a view like no other. Overlooking the track are restaurants “356” in Atlanta and “917” in L.A, aptly named after the first Porsche sports car and the brand’s perhaps most legendary race car.
For those wishing to get competitive, Simulator Labs offer virtual wheel-to-wheel action on the most famous circuits in the world. And race car aficionados making the journey to PEC LA will enjoy the fact that it is also home to Porsche Motorsport North America. From the lobby, a glance through the glass into the workshop reveals specialists working on everything from current competition racers to legendary machines.
In Atlanta, a trip to the lower levels of One Porsche Drive does not disappoint those looking for a piece of history either. The two-story Heritage Gallery shows rotating displays of carefully curated cars. At the moment, the 20th Anniversary of Porsche Track Experience is being highlighted alongside a celebration of the fan favorites GT1, GT2, GT3 and GT4.
In parallel to the themed exhibits, guests can enjoy the view of privately owned Classics that are in for service or restoration. Located across from the Heritage Gallery is the only Porsche Classic Factory Restoration workshop outside of Germany.
The PEC Atlanta also serves as the headquarters for Porsche Cars North America, Inc. - the exclusive U.S. importer for the marque – and a range of subsidiaries including Porsche Financial Services, Porsche Digital, Porsche Consulting and MHP.
Cars are not sold directly from either PEC, but both locations play host to a New Vehicle Delivery program. A customer who orders a new Porsche at one of the 192 U.S. dealer partners can choose to take delivery in Atlanta or L.A. for a white-glove reveal, gourmet lunch and a driving experience in a comparable model before the exciting journey home in their new dream car.
There are currently seven Porsche Experience Centers worldwide. Outside of North America, they are located in Leipzig and Hockenheim (Germany), Silverstone (England), Le Mans (France) and Shanghai (China) with an eighth underway in Franciacorta (Italy).
For anyone wanting to visit in Atlanta or Los Angeles, www.porschedriving.com shows all details on hours, availability and booking.