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Porsche - Book Review

Evolution of an Icon

Text by Hartmut Lehbrink
Photos by Rainer W. Schlegelmilch

Porsche, by Rainer W. Schlegelmilch and Hartmut Lehbrink, tracks the design evolution of this iconic car from the 1930s up to the present day

In their new book, Porsche, Rainer W. Schlegelmilch and Hartmut Lehbrink share their admiration for the world-famous vehicle in more than 400 pages that track the design evolution of the automotive icon and showcase its different models throughout the years. Vibrant photo spreads include classic models such as the 911 Carrera and the venerated 356, as well as modern beauties like the sleek Panamera Turbo four-door sports car. Each spread is accompanied by informative background pieces presented in English, German and French. Since Porsches are built for blistering speeds, it should come as no surprise that the book also contains a comprehensive section on the racing accomplishments of the company. That "Stuttgart horse" logo (not to be confused with the "prancing horse" emblem of Ferrari) has crossed many a finish line on the speedways of Europe since the 1930s, and the book covers every victory in exciting detail.

Besides the sports cars that brought the Stuttgart-based firm worldwide acclaim, this soft-cover book also features other Porsche ventures, such as airplane and motorcycle engines, water turbines, wind power plants and ski lifts. In the biography of founder Ferdinand Porsche, he is lauded for designing what may have been the world's first hybrid car in 1903, which was fueled by both gas and electricity.

The book also rounds up the firm's World War II contributions, including Type 82, the German forces' standard off-road vehicle; Type 166, an amphibious version; and huge Type 101 "Tiger" tanks, which never made it to the battlefield. There are plenty of specs detailing the modern cars to please the average "gearhead," while the colorful photos and history make this a fine gift for Porsche owners, and those who dream of becoming one.

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