With summer fast approaching in the northern hemisphere, auto enthusiasts will be coveting sports car ownership with the abundance of warm weather and dry pavement. Residing in the upper echelons of the sports car hierarchy, the German-built Porsche 911 is considered the ultimate manner for a driver to embrace sunlight-toasted roads. For those in possession of a Porsche 911, it is understandable that a considerable amount of your recreational time will be spent behind the wheel this summer. For others like me, Porsche dream rides will be likely left out of reach for 2013. However, in my case, I received a pleasing consolation in the form of a new book celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Porsche 911 sports car.
“The Porsche 911 Book” is a broad 50th anniversary presentation to the success of the sports car known as the 911. As a hardcover book with 300-plus pages of material, the weight of Porsche history can definitely be felt. Spending several days absorbing The Porsche 911 Book, the action of flipping through the large pages is unlike anything existing in electronic publishing. Though the Internet is a wealth of information, it’s refreshing to digest content from a fine, heavy book. The Porsche 911 Book is one of those resources that instantly provide the sensation of discovery. It’s recommended you avoid placing the book on your lap for a long period.
For those looking for an information-heavy resource to the famous German sports car, The Porsche 911 Book will fall short in fulfilling your demands. Light on text, the hardcover book is an assortment of gigantic, glossy photographs. The Porsche 911 Book is the ultimate family photo album of Germany’s most enduring sports car. A timeline of the Porsche 911 captured in gloriously studio staged photography, the love for the German sports car was name clear though the lens of Rene Staud. Prototype, production and racing versions of the 911 are represented as a full visual history lesson in the book’s pages.
Won over immediately by the quality and attention to detail, I was eagerly guided through every generation of Porsche 911s. Several pictures have captured my interest for several minutes in book. First was the 1959 Porsche T7 known as the precursor to the principles and design shaping the Porsche 911 four years later. The T7 was a rare opportunity to seek eyes on a living prototype to what would be a sports car mainstay. Moving on through the Porsche 901 into the first generation 911, the photographs inside The Porsche 911 Book captured a coy European sports car set to take on the world.
First of the more intriguing images from the early part of the book is a photo of the opened engine cover revealing the air-cooled powerplant. Printed across two pages, the preserved engine label indicating the firing order of the spark plugs is like a factory image taken in 1963. Progressing through the pages, the first Porsche 911 Targa top model and the evolution to the “ducktail” rear deck proved captivating.
As The Porsche 911 Book explores history in the 1970s, motorsport accomplishments participating in world sports car, IROC and rally car competition is prominent. The 1980s and 1990s models are vibrantly colored with supercar examples such as the 959 and the 911 GT1 demonstrating the blinding heights of performance competing firmly with Ferrari and Lamborghini. Leading to the current 911 platform version of the sports car, the 2012 Carrera S and Carrera 4 models allow the book to end on a contemporary note.
A combination of interior and exterior photos throughout the book provide realization to technology as well as definition to type of driving experience expected from each generation. Despite all the large pages, there are few pages of text in The Porsche 911 Book. Short, multilingual introductions as well as basic performance and model specifications remain the extent words inside the photo book.
In this case, the less-is-more, minimalist approach truly does justice to the book’s overall presentation as a photo collection. What is written provides insightful coverage to the Porsche 911.
Listed at $125.00, The Porsche 911 Book is a premium treat to the lovers of the rear-engined sports car’s history. This vivid collection of Porsche 911 vehicles literally and figuratively captures the weight of the iconic car.
If you’re Porsche 911 fan or know a 911 fanatic, there may not be a better gift out there. Pick it up on Amazon for significantly less than list price (currently about $80.)