If you’re a fan of the simple, no-fuss naming scheme utilized by Porsche, you have Peugeot to thank. In a short and sweet informational video, the German automaker outlined the history behind the legendary “911” badge.
As the video enumerates, production was winding down on the 356, making room for a newly minted six-cylinder sports coupe. Porsche called its newest entry the 901, and ordered up a batch of gold nines, zeros, and ones for the model badging in preparation for a full-scale launch.
At the 1963 Frankfurt auto show, Porsche proudly presented the new 901 coupe to the world. Peugeot wasn’t pleased. The French automaker had semi-official rights to automotive numeric nameplates with zero in the middle. It had already sold quite a few models, so it sent a “friendly but distinct” letter to Porsche requesting the 901 be changed to something else.
So, Porsche sliced the zero out of the equation and added a one, creating the 911 badge we know and love. Despite the change occurring so early in the production process, at least 85 901s left the assembly line before the zero was removed. These were all allegedly produced for internal testing purposes, but a few slipped out to customers over the years.
Check out the video to get a glimpse into the history of the 911 name.