Porsche unveil 15 concept cars never seen before outside of the Stuttgart HQ
Including the 911 Vision Safari, the 919 Street and a... van for when we race to space
If there's one thing we've learnt about 2020 is that things that no one could anticipate or predict keep on happening. That's probably the reason why Porsche decided, out the blue, to publish a book about 15 concept cars that have never been seen before outside their HQ in Stuttgart and their design studio in Weissach. The book is title Porsche Unseen.
We've got track-focused hypercars, off-roaders, a road legal 919 (!), a modern take on the 917 kh (!!) and even a van for when we race to space. And, yes, even the successor to the Porsche 550.
2013 Porsche 904 Living Legend
Built on the underpinnings of the Volkswagen XL, this lightweight concept car was designed to capture the spirit of the 1963 Carrera GTS. It would've been powered by a high-revving V2 engine from a motorcycle, it would have only weighed 900 kg, and it would've been called 904 Living Legend. Unfortunately, it never came to be. Pity.
2005 Porsche 906 Living Legend
Porsche designed the 906 as a design studio and testbed for future iterations of sportscars. Inspired by the livery utilized by Porsche in the 1966 Targa Florio, this is probably the least likely to become an actual production car in the future. Small consolation, I guess.
2019 Porsche Vision Spyder
The Vision Spyder, also referred to as the 551, is the spiritual successor to the Porsche 550-1500 RS Spyder that took part in the 1954 Carrera Panamericana and of course the car whose name is inevitably associated with Hollywood legend James Dean. A modern roadster that (almost) looks like a speedster because it hasn't got a roof and a minuscule windshield.
2012 Porsche 911 Vision Safari
Tuthill Porsche competed in the East African Safari Really using a pair of modified 911s in the 1970s and several tuners have tried to recapture the off-roading spirit of those particular vehicles ever since. Porsche tried too and in 2012, they built the 911 Vision Safari, based on the 911 991. Beefed-up suspension, rally-inspired cockpit with a proper roll cage and reinforced wheel arches. It's wonderful. It's just too bad they never actually built it.
2013 Porsche 917 Living Legend
Porsche have won the 24 Hours of Le Mans 19 times and they've regularly tried to paint some of their road cars and concept cars (even the Taycan) with Le Mans-inspired and Le Mans-winning liveries. This particular model takes its inspiration from the 917 KH and is based on the 918 Spyder. People of Porsche! Please please please, go ahead and build it.
2017 Porsche 919 Street
Yet another Le Mans-inspired car but this is something else. This is a road legal version of the 919 Hybrid that won the race three times in a row in 2015, 2016 and 2017. Porsche built this concept precisely because they wanted to mark the occasion and they gave it a 900-hp hybrid powertrain. Who knows. Maybe one day...
2016 Porsche Vision 916
A tribute to the original Lohner-Porsche prototype build by Ferdinand Porsche in early 1900s. Powered by four electric units, one at each wheel, the 916 Prototype was designed to be used a baseline for future sportscars.
2016 Porsche Le Mans Living Legend
The Le Mans Living Legend takes its inspiration from the first car ever designed specifically for the race. The most prominent and stylistically interesting design trait is the odd rear section, featuring an oversized bonnet/trunk integrated into the roof and the wheel arches. The Living Legend was built on the underpinnings of the Boxster in 2016, and powere by an 8-cylinder engine. Unfortunately, it never made it into production.
2018 Porsche Vision “Racing Service”
The Porsche Vision Renndienst (Racing Service) was reportedly designed to answer a question literally no one had been asking: "what if we build a supporting van for when we race in space?" Ah. The result is a funky-looking, stylish van with an electric powertrain and a family-friendly cabin. They should definitely build this.
2019 Porsche Vision 920
The Vision 920 is basically a hypothetical road-going but track-focused hypercar inspired by, you've guessed, LMP1 cars. It features a McLaren F1-style single-seat cockpit and Porsche say they may actually use this as a testbed for something they might build in the future.
2013 Porsche Macan Vision Safari
Porsche used the most versatile vehicle in the line-up, the Macan, to build a rally-focused variant inspired by the 911 Safari and the 959 Paris-Dakar. It features chunky wheels, massive wheel arches and, interestingly, fewer doors. Porsche removed the rear doors so this is now a 3-door coupe/off-roader.
2014 Porsche Boxster Bergspyder
A tribute to the Porsche 909 Bergspyder, this is a lightweight, single-seater speedster with only seat on the left-hand side of the car built on the chassis of the 981 Boxster. There's a conspicuous roll bar and a tiny windshield, it only weighs 1,130 kg.
2019 Porsche Vision 918 RS
This, in my humble opinion, is still on Porsche's radar but probably no longer a priority. The Vision 918 RS is essentially an extreme version of already extreme car, the 918, designed to be used on the racetrack but also streel legal. Should they build it?
2016 Porsche Vision Turismo
This is a concept car that might make it to production one day. The only issue is Porsche would have to figure out a way to market it and sell it somewhere between the Panamera, Panamera Cross Turismo, Taycan and the upcoming Taycan Cross Turismo. The Vision Turismo is a 4-door 911, with the front end of a 918 and powered by an engine located in the middle. In a 4-door sedan. Mad.
2019 Porsche Vision E
The Porsche Vision E is an ultra-lightweight, single-seater using the same 800-volt technology that the company used on the Taycan. A high-performance supercar, partly inspired by the single-seater racers that Porsche use in Formula E and partly inspired by the Taycan.
Written by Jan Baedeker and Stefan Bogner, Porsche Unseen takes us on an amazing visual journey through the history of these 15 never-seen-before concepts made in Weissach.