Porsche At The L.A. Auto Show
Los Angeles has always been a special place for Porsche. Executive Vice President for Research and Development, Wolfgang Hatz describes Southern California as “…the Porsche911’s second home”. It’s only fitting that Porsche made three tremendous presentations at the 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show.
First, the new Porsche Panamera GTS made its world premiere debut. The Panamera was ceremoniously unveiled by two surprising guest: Patrick Long, Porsche Works & Flying Lizards Driver along with Romain Dumas, Porsche factory driver. The Panamera GTS is powered by a modified 4.8-liter naturally aspirated V8 engine, delivering 430 hp at 6,700 rpm, increasing the output over the Panamera S/4S by 30 hp. The maximum torque also increases by comparison, from 369 to 384 lb. ft.
At the push of a button, thanks to the standard Sport Chrono package, the 7-speed Porsche Doppelkupplungsgetriebe (PDK) transmission transmits the engine output to the all-wheel drive system during gear changes without interruption to the power flow. This collaboration enables the Panamera GTS to sprint to 60 mph in 4.3 seconds, accelerating on to its top track speed of 178 mph. The GTS is equipped with the latest Porsche dynamic driving dynamic control systems, including adaptive air suspension including Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM). This system constantly calibrates settings to suit specific driving challenges, from regulating leveling, height and spring rate to electronic damping. With the suspension set at “Normal,” the GTS sits an aggressive ten millimeters lower than any other Panamera model.
In terms of looks, the new Panamera GTS includes distinctive design features at the front, side and rear as well as black highlights. The interior is also tailored to its sporty personality with adaptive ports seats, SportDesign steering wheel with shift paddles and exclusive GTS leather interior with Alcantara surfaces.
Secondly, Porsche also unveiled the all new Porsche 911 (991) Carrera S for the first time in North America. This is the seventh generation Porsche 911 and it does not disappoint. Executive VP of R&D, Wolfgang Hatz says that everything in this new 911 has been completely reengineered and redesigned, but maintains every inch the embodiment of 911 Carrera. Longer, lower, wider and 100 lbs. lighter than the previous 911, the seventh generation is athletic, elegant and iconic. The Porsche 911 Carrera is equipped with a new 350 hp, 3.4-liter boxer engine while the 911 Carrera S features a 400 hp, 3.8-liter boxer engine – a 15 hp improvement versus its predecessor. The first 911 models will arrive in dealerships beginning in February of 2012.
Lastly, Porsche announced its plans for the Porsche Experience Center Los Angeles, to be built in nearby Carson, California. It will be situated near the intersection of two major Los Angeles area traffic arteries, the 405 and 110 Freeways. Detlev von Platen, President and CEO of Porsche Cars North America, indicates that the facility is going to be 53 acres, twice the size of the Atlanta Porsche Experience Center and both facilities will cost over $100 million dollars combined.
The centerpiece of the complex will be a world-class test track and handling course, including areas where special surfaces replicate rain, ice, and snow conditions. These training sections include the Ice Hill, where a steep slope, computer-controlled water jets, and a low-friction surface will challenge even the most experienced drivers and help them improve their real-world skills. A special off-road area will combine 45-degree declines and ascents – ideal terrain for unleashing a Porsche Cayenne.
The Porsche Experience Center will also offer programs focused on maximizing personal fitness, wellness, and athletic performance through its Porsche Human Performance Center. This unique facility will feature a leading sports science laboratory and training programs, incorporating the latest techniques used in preparing Porsche race car drivers.