2017 was an interesting year for Porsche and fans of the brand. We had a great year of bringing you the most important Porsche news stories and entertainment, and thanks for reading along. Over the last twelve months, the Porsche community has grown in a big way with Porsche setting sales records seemingly every month, we’ve seen a big jump in enthusiast-backed events and social gatherings, and there were quite a few significant motorsport victories. Here’s our breakdown of 2017 from the perspective of a Porsche enthusiast.
1. Porsche Wins Le Mans
For the third year in a row, Porsche can call themselves Le Mans victors. This was a hard fought race that wasn’t without tumultuous times. Basically both of the Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1s suffered failures, but the three Toyota TS050s suffered worse failures. Porsche’s final margin of victory over the leading LMP2 was only one lap. It was certainly an exciting finish, and one that won’t soon be forgotten. Sadly it was also the 919 Hybrid’s final season this year, so there definitely will not be a repeat win for 2018. You can read more about it here.
2. All The New Car Launches
This year was seriously busy for Porsche new car launches. In addition to a brand new Cayenne, Porsche debuted the wild GT2 RS, the now-available-in-manual GT3, wagon and hyper hybrid versions of the Panamera, GTS variants of the 718 range, the minimalist Carrera T, and the extra special 911 Turbo S Exclusive Series.
3. Patrick Long Wins Pirelli World Challenge Championship
We can’t help but feel this flew just a little bit under the Porsche community radar. Patrick Long, now in his 15th year of competition as a Porsche factory driver, won the Pirelli World Challenge GT championship with Wright Motorsports. After missing out on the championship last year thanks to a last-lap punt from an elderly Cadillac driver (typical), he came back in 2017 with a vengeance, winning four of 19 rounds, and taking the championship by 27 points over Cadillac’s Michael Cooper. Well done, Patrick.
4. Porsche Announces Rennsport Reunion 6
We absolutely loved Rennsport Reunion V, and can’t wait until the next one. Announced for late September of 2018, you’d better get your plans settled now, because this is going to be a huge Porsche show that you don’t want to miss.
5. New Mid-engine 911 RSR Launches
Porsche finally submitted to competitive pressure and unveiled their mid-engine 911 RSR racer for the 2017 racing season. This car was responsible for factory-backed efforts in IMSA’s GTLM class and the FIA WEC’s GTE Pro category. Unlike 2016, the car proved competitive in both series, taking wins both in the US and overseas. While they didn’t win either championship (largely due to poor luck), they had a great showing this year, and we look forward to seeing how competitive they can be in 2018 (did you see there will be four factory cars at Le Mans in 2018? Awesome!).
6. Emory Porsche Campout Returns
What can be said about Emory Porsche Campout that hasn’t already been said? It was a three day event up in Oregon that we are so happy to have been a part of. The entire Emory family played host to hundreds of Porsche fans from all over the country, and it was a ton of fun. With a car show, a film festival, and a bit of diving for parts, we were in awe of this event. Sadly it’s no longer annual, so we’ll have to wait a few years to see such an event again. If you get the chance to go, absolutely go! Read more about the event here.
7. The Millionth 911 Built
It’s hard to believe that as popular as Porsche’s famed 911 is, it took over 50 years for them to sell one million units. This gorgeous green car is the one-millionth example to roll off Porsche’s 911 assembly line, and it pays homage to many different cues from those first 901 models. It’s a truly special car, and it deserves its place in Porsche’s museum. It’s just so vintage cool.
8. Luftgekuhlt Continues Growth In 4th Year
Despite the overcast day and early morning rain, Patrick Long and Howie Idelson managed to kick off Luftgekühlt 4 without any issues, attracting a huge crowd of aircooled Porsches and spectators alike. The venue wasn’t quite as visually stunning as Luft 3, but the cars were laid out in a coherent and attractive way by event organizers. They worked hard on this one and deserved the huge attendance they received. We now know the date for Luftgekühlt 5 and will bring you more details as we get them.
9. Porsche 911 GT2 RS Sets Nürburgring Lap Record
For the most part, we don’t hold much esteem for street car lap times. There are so many factors at play here that can give one car a faster time than another, and that’s particularly the case at the Nürburgring. Then again, Porsche’s most powerful 911 in history beat up on a wildly powerful mid-engine V10 Lamborghini, so the bragging rights are deserved. The fact that a 911 variant is faster even than Porsche’s recent hybrid hypercar really puts the development of speed into perspective. Well done, Porsche.
10. Porsche Sells More Cars Than Ever Before
With more models and variants than ever before, Porsche is selling more cars than ever before. While SUVs are now the majority of Porsche’s sales numbers, they’re still selling quite a few sports cars that we enthusiasts are happy to drive. With big sales numbers comes more investment in these super fast and super fun sports cars. Without the four-cylinder Macan, we might not have had the GT2 RS. Keep it up Porsche, here’s to an even stronger 2018 sales year! Here are the latest sales numbers.