When we weren’t too busy checking out the new 2019 Volkswagen Arteon or tearing around the Nurburgring, we spent a large chunk of our recent German excursion in the best museums the country had to offer. Stop number one: the Porsche Museum. It was hard to decide among the mindblowing collection, but here are a few of our favorite cars we found on the show floor.
1971 Porsche 917/20 “Pink Pig”
It’s the Pink Pig! This is one of the most well-known and iconic variants of the 917, despite being the only one in existence. The 917/20 was the result of Porsche’s desire for more stability at speed, looking to blend the stability of the 917/K with the low drag shape of the 917/LH. The resulting car was a wide, low, and very aggressive profile.
In a rare moment of German levity, the porcine car was nicknamed the “Pink Pig” and given a butcher’s chart livery to liven things up. Unfortunately, despite being extremely fast, the one-off car was crashed at Le Mans, never to compete again. Lucky for us, it now lives out its days under soft museum lights.
1947 Porsche Typ 360 Cisitalia
Sure, Ferdinand Porsche etched his name in the history books with his eponymous car company, but before he developed the first 356, he was a prominent engineer for all manner of companies. This Cisitalia grand prix car was a project developed by Porsche right after the company formed and as you might expect, is an absurdly impressive piece of engineering.
Adhering to the size restrictions of Formula 1 during that period, the Typ 360 is powered by a 1.5-liter supercharged flat-12 engine, sending power to either the rear- or all-four-wheels through a “driver selected” four-wheel-drive system.
The engineering was advanced, but due to time constraints and lack of funding, the project stalled out in the testing phase.
1974 Porsche 911 Turbo
The museum was full of first production runs, and this was one of our favorites. According to the placard, Louise Piëch, the sister of Ferdinand Porsche, was given this narrow-body Turbo for her 70th birthday. Thanks to the narrow body and plaid interior, there isn’t any other Turbo like it.
1986 Porsche 961
Does this body shape seem familiar? It should – this is the only “real” tarmac-focused race car to emerge from the 959 program. After Group B was shuttered, the 959 was a stillborn project, so Porsche further developed the competition car intended for Group B into the GTX class.
Unfortunately, despite a 680-hp turbocharged flat-six and competitive performance, the program was abandoned in 1987, leaving the 961 to sit on permanent display in the museum.
1959 Porsche Schlepper “Standard 218”
What, you thought Porsche was only known for sports cars in the ‘50s and ‘60s? The German automaker made a name for itself in the farming community with these brawny little diesel tractors. By 1963, 120,000 tractors had been sold.
1969 Porsche 914/8
Nope, that isn’t a typo. Underneath the rear decklid of this unassuming 914 thrums the 3.0-liter flat-eight from the 908 race car. Built as a proof-of-concept by Ferdinand Piëch, this is one of two 914s to carry eight cylinders. This is the second of the two, fitted a variant of the engine detuned to “just” 300 hp. It was presented to Ferry Porsche for his 60th birthday, but after he expressed his distaste, it was mothballed.
1996 Porsche 911 993 Carrera RS 3.8 Clubsport
This bright-blue coupe was 993’s version of the modern GT3 RS, except this is likely more hardcore. Nearly every creature comfort was stripped out, and in its place was bolted a roll cage, racing seats, and full-bore harnesses.
Power came from a hopped-up 3.8-liter flat-six, putting down around 295 hp to the rear wheels. While street legal in some countries, the car mostly made a name for itself out on the track.
1997 Porsche 911 GT1 Straßenversion
Despite the wild bodywork and elongated, race-ready tail, this is officially considered a 911 variant. This is the street-legal variant of the Porsche 911 GT1 race car that was particularly competitive.
To meet homologation requirements, 25 GT1s were outfitted with headlights, safety equipment, wipers, and less aggressive tires. The 3.2-liter twin-turbocharged flat-six was also detuned, now only putting out 537 hp.
2005 Porsche 996 911 Turbo S
This handsome silver ’05 Turbo S was slotted in-between a 993 Turbo and a 997.2 Turbo S at Porsche’s Turbo display. While we would usually be unable to look away from a 993 Turbo, the “S” designation on the 996 makes this rather rare, with just 598 coupes produced.
Like the current 911 Turbo S, this is best seen as a faster, sharper variant of the Turbo. Power came from a 3.6-liter twin-turbocharged flat-six engine, outfitted standard with the X50 power pack, boosting output to around 450 hp. Performance was impressive – 0-60 mph took just 3.9 seconds, on its way to a top speed of 197 mph. Other differences included carbon ceramic brake discs and aluminum-faced gauges.