More than 27,000 marque enthusiasts attend UAE’s icons of Porsche festival
A 911 Turbo Sonderwunsch and the new Panamera were among the highlights of Dubai’s annual Icons of Porsche festival. Fans of classic cars, arts and culture were on-hand to commemorate seventy-five years of Porsche sports cars, as well as sixty years of 911. The gathering, hosted in the Dubai Design District, “wasn’t just a show of cars, art and culture, but a display of the passion and strength of the region’s Porsche community.” So said Manfred Bräunl, CEO of Porsche Middle East and Africa FZE.
Of course, an event of this scale presents Porsche with the perfect opportunity to present its new and forthcoming products, but Bräunl was keen to ensure Porsche’s heritage was celebrated, hence the inclusion of many aircooled classics. “This was the third staging of the event and our biggest yet,” he tells us. “We would like to thank every single event attendee for joining our celebration. In particular, I want to thank every Porsche owner exhibiting their car on-site. We truly appreciate the support and commitment to sharing these dream sports cars with our festival audience.”
As well as the third-generation Panamera being unveiled to the public, the 718 Spyder RS and Vision 357 Speedster concept made their regional debuts. The all-electric Mission X hypercar concept, a 992 S/T and a host of cars from the Porsche Museum’s collection were also on display, taking up residence across eight festival zones, namely 60 Years of 911, Porsche Esports Arena, The Pit Lane, The Boulevard, Mission X, Porsche Museum Heritage Truck, Art Beach and the new Panamera Cube.
The skyline around the Dubai Design District had a noticeable addition across the weekend — towering over the site was an inflatable classic 911, which was visible from several kilometres away. The bright red sports car was positioned at the heart of the festival and achieved a new Guinness World Record for being the largest inflatable vehicle to date. Measuring length of almost twenty metres, more than six metres in height and eight metres wide, the gigantic balloon served as a beacon attracting Porschephiles to the festival, not only from the United Arab Emirates, but from countries worldwide.
Meanwhile, a bespoke 911 Turbo was unveiled at the event. Taking the form of a 992-generation Turbo, it served to present a modern-day interpretation of the first 911 Turbo (930). This one-off Sonderwunsch car marked part of the festival’s celebration of the 911’s sixtieth anniversary, as well as showcasing the capabilities of the Porsche Sonderwunsch personalisation programme.
The project was a collaboration between Style Porsche, Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur and the Porsche Middle East and Africa regional office, with support provided by their colleagues from the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart. This special 992 reflects the look of ‘911 Turbo no.1’, a car commissioned for Louise Piëch, daughter of Ferdinand Porsche (and sister of Ferry Porsche), and was given to her on 29th August 1974, the occasion of her seventieth birthday.
Unlike production examples of the 930, this particular Turbo featured a narrow-chassis Carrera body, yet debuted the large Turbo rear wing. The car is distinguished by its use of Tartan fabric in the red interior, which was handpicked by Piëch and is paired with silver paintwork. Tartan is reflected in the unusual design of the car’s Porsche-script side stripes, too.
More than four thousand Porsche owners travelled from all over the globe to attend Icons of Porsche. All eyes are now on whether the event can smash its own attendance record. Visit iconsofporsche.com to be kept up to date with announcements relating to dates for the fourth outing of this superb event.