Porsche Needs to Put This Race Van Concept Into Production ASAP
Decidedly unsexy name, totally kick-ass van.
You are looking at the Vision Race Service, a vehicle as delectably awesome as its name is lame. Created by Porsche's design team and built as a full-scale mockup in 2018, a real one of these would fit up to six people inside its sleek, Star Trek shuttlecraft-shaped body and, according to Porsche, slot into the family garage next to, say, a 911 or 718 Boxster.
But this concept's livery also nods to vans in Porsche's past, namely the Volkswagen T1—that's the Microbus—cargo vans and pickup trucks prominently used in the 1960s and '70s as dealership parts shuttles and race-team support vehicles. The Renndeinst lettering on this concept's flanks translates to "Race Service," because of course, and is applied just below a debossed Porsche wordmark. Other cool elements include the gorgeous pewter-colored 22-inch wheels (wrapped in Continental ContiSportContact 6 rubber), aerodynamic vanes ahead of the rear wheels, and a blue-tinted crystalline badge on the van's nose.
The thin, quad lights up front nod to the inner headlamp elements on many current Porsches, including the 2021 Panamera, but the seating arrangement decidedly does not. The driver is centrally located, allowing rear passengers an expansive view out the wraparound front glass. The side windows taper as they move toward the rear, looking like a visor on a racing helmet. We'd love to see the Race Service van done up in the helmet designs of the iconic Porsche race drivers we can imagine it supporting—think the simple designs of Jacky Ickx or Jochen Mass or the more vibrant ones of Jörg Bergmeister or Patrick Long.
Being a modern concept, this Porsche race van is imagined to be both capable of automated driving and propelled purely by electricity via an underfloor battery pack and an unspecified number of drive motors. "Sport Tourer" lettering on its tail hints at long-distance, comfortable travel, but the Vision Race Service is destined to remain a one-off, nonfunctional model. That's too bad, but if Porsche wants to drop it off at our place, we'd be happy to see if we could somehow stuff a 997 GT3 RS 4.0-liter Mezger flat-six in its rear end and take a swing at that wicked, 911-swapped Microbus that terrorizes the Nürburgring. That's the sort of #vanlife we can get behind.