Porsche

The Genesis of the Porsche Brand

Silver Porsche 356 in a German museum

Ferdinand Porsche, a genius in mechanical engineering and automobile design, created the Porsche brand in 1931. Porsche founded his consulting firm, Dr. Ing. h. c. F. Porsche GmbH, in the center of Stuttgart, Germany, with its main function providing design services to companies involved in the automobile industry.

One of the first jobs undertaken by the newly formed Porsche company was to design a car for the German population—a people’s car, or in German, die Volkswagen. This project, undertaken with seriousness and determination,gave us the Volkswagen Beetle, one of the most successful automobile designs of all time.

During World War II, Porsche was requisitioned to design automobiles and other vehicles for the German military, including a heavy tank design. Ultimately that wartime contract would go to the rival company, Henschel. During this time, however, Ferdinand Porsche developed strategies and methods that he would later use to build sports cars of the utmost quality.

The Porsche 356 takes off

After the defeat of the Axis powers in 1945, the British seized control of the Volkswagen factory, and Ferdinand was arrested for war crimes.  The charges against him were never brought to trial, and Porsche was eventually released. It was during his twenty months in prison, however, that his son Ferry decided that there was no car good enough for him to drive, and he decided to design and manufacture one himself. His car would become known as the Porsche 356.

When Ferdinand Porsche was released from prison, he quickly took control of his company once again, and in 1950, a deal was reached with the German government to produce a run of the Porsche 356 for sale to the general public. From that day forward, Porsche has been a commanding leader in luxury automobiles.

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