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Porsche: Excellence Was Expected

Book 4: 21st Century (2002-2020)

by Karl Ludvigsen

Hardcover, 9 in. x 10.5 in.
728 pages
761 photos & illustrations
Price: Only available as part of set

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Book 4: 21st Century

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In Book 4 of Porsche: Excellence Was Expected Karl Ludvigsen recounts the dramatic events of 2008-09 that cast a deep shadow over what had been the world's most profitable car maker. Although Porsche became part of the VW Group, as a consequence of their maneuvers the Porsche and Pich families achieved effective control of that vast corporation. Porsche?s reaction to the financial ructions was to launch one great new car after another. Among them was the sensational 918 Spyder, the hypercar whose first appearance at Geneva in 2010 went a long way to show that Porsche was still Porsche.

These were also the years of the creation and launch of the mid-engined Cayman coupe, which soon established a reputation as one of the world's best-handling sports cars. In 2016 Boxster and Cayman were joined at the hip under the "718" title, a tribute to the great sports-racers of the 1950s and 1960s that carried that project number.

In 2009 Porsche introduced the Panamera, its most controversial offering since the Cayenne. This "Learjet for the road" fulfilled the role of the abandoned Type 989 of the early 1990s. Its complete overhaul in 2016 brought improved styling and new vee engines in a partnership with Audi. Many of the Panamera's components were shared with the Cayenne, which received a major upgrade in 2017. Since the 2014 model year it had a cheeky little sister, the Leipzig-built Macan. Although derived from the Audi Q5, the Macan was a Porsche through and through. Also a fast seller, the Macan secured Porsche?s financial future.

Flying the all-important sports-car flag was the evergreen 911 Carrera, first with the 997 and then the 991. The 992 arrived as a 2020 model with all the bells and whistles needed to keep it at the top of its class. Although a hybrid variant of the 992 was not imminent, most of the production Porsches were taking advantage of the exploits of the 919 Hybrid. Starting in 2015, this brilliantly engineered LMP1 racer won the 24 Hours of Le Mans three years running, testifying to Porsche's competitiveness. On the horizon was the all-electric Taycan pointing the way to the legendary sports-car maker's future.

click to enlarge, and for longer caption if available
click to enlarge, and for longer caption if available
Porsche's innovative seven-speed PDK transmission was introduced in the 991.2 for 2009."
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Although not an estate car, the tail of the 2014 Panamera 4S had some of the curves and swerves first seen in the Sport Turismo.
Highlights in Book 4:
RS Spyders compete in LMP2
mid-engine Cayman
997, 99 and 992
GT3 R Hybrid
4-door Porsche: Panamera
Boxster/Cayman update (981)
Cayenne E22
918 Spyder
Macan market success
Domination by 919 E-Hybrid
Tacan for the future
Porsche model timeline
Models in Book 4:
Boxster (987)
Boxster (981)
Cayman (987)
Cayman (981)
Cayenne E2 & E22
Cayenne E-Hybrid
Panamera (970 & 971)
911 (997, 991, 992)
918 Spyder
RS Spyder
911 GT2
911 GT2 RS
911 GT3
911 GTS RS 4.0
911 GT3 RSR
911 GT3 Cup
911 GT3 R Hybrid
Cayman GT4
918 RSR
919 Hybrid

For a closer look at the 2019 edition:

the full Set
Book 1
Book 2
Book 3

Porsche: Excellence Was Expected
Porsche: Excellence Was Expected
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Karl Ludvigsen
Karl Ludvigsen

In addition to his motor industry activities as an executive (with GM, Fiat and Ford) and head of a consulting company, Karl Ludvigsen has been active for over 50 years as an author and historian. As an author, co-author or editor he has some four dozen books to his credit. Needless to say, they are all about cars and the motor industry, Karl's life-long passion.

More about Karl Ludvigsen

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