A Tribute to the Epochal Porsche Transaxle

Porsche Museum at night from street view.

When it comes to Porsches, the automaker is renowned for its 911 sports car — specifically manufactured with the engine at its rear. However, between 1976 and 1995, the automaker ventured into new territory with a transaxle powertrain that featured the engine at the front with the transmission at the rear axle, such as with the type 924. To honor the 40th anniversary of the 924, 928, 944, and 968 models, the Porsche Museum has put 23 exceptional models on display in a special exhibition: “The Transaxle Era. From the 924 to the 928.”

Porsche’s transaxle found a way to reach roughly 400,000 customers worldwide and embodied everything that Porsche stands for: blistering performance and everyday usability. While the Porsche Museum will display transaxle models that were sold to the general public, cars like the 924 Turbo Targa, which was a prototype made in 1979, will be shown for the first time.

Transaxle Porsches may not be as popular as the rear-engine 911, but these sports cars were once seen as the way forward for the German automaker. The 928, which made its premiere at the Geneva International Motor Show in 1977, was intended to replace the 911. As a grand tourer with the ability of a luxury sports car, it’s no surprise that the car went on to be named “Car of the Year” and spawned many versions. Alongside five other 928 models, a one-of-a-kind 928 S4 cabriolet concept car will be on display at the special exhibit.

The type 944 followed closely after the 928 and was positioned directly in between the 924 and the 911. Thanks to its engine derived from the 928, the 944 became one of the most popular cars from Porsche with a total of 163,302 units produced.

The exhibit will also have a cabriolet concept car from 1985 that is finished in flamingo pink, the 944 from the “Luna” project—an endurance test where a specialist traveled from North America across Europe to Asia in 258 days, while covering the same distance from the Earth to the moon (and more).

To mark the end of Porsche’s transaxle era, enthusiasts will be able to get a close look at the type 968. As a product that culminated over 15 years of exhausting work, the 968 was characterized by its impressive 3.0-liter engine and elegant design. Visitors will be able to enjoy a roadster concept of the 968 that was made in 1992, which features a dynamic cockpit and a heavily-revised interior.

Porsche urges visitors to attend its “Transaxle Day” on Sunday, May 22, which is “International Museum Day.” Enthusiasts and history buffs alike will get a free admission into the museum, while guided tours will be conducted through the special exhibit. Owners will also be showing off their personal transaxle Porsches throughout the museum for visitors to look over.

Explore the History of Porsche at The Auto Gallery

While the Porsche Museum is located in Stuttgart, Germany, there’s an easier way to experience Porsche’s model—visiting The Porsche  Auto Gallery Woodland Hills. With a large selection of vehicles from the German automaker, drivers will get a glimpse into what makes the automaker special.

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