Dare I mention it during November but Christmas is only just around the corner, and if like me you are terrible at deciding what to buy the cherished ones in your life let me give you some ideas. I was recently invited to the Porsche Experience Centre at the hub of British motorsport that is Silverstone racetrack for a media day. Opened in November 2008 the Porsche Experience Centre is the result of 6 years of development, built right next to the iconic Silverstone racetrack and on top of the old Great British super stage rally circuit of the 90’s, the newly extended centre is a highly impressive feature for Porsche.
The Porsche brand has had a huge upturn in the last few years, the popularity is surely down to the huge strides Porsche have taken to produce vehicles that are both innovative and functional, whilst still maintaining its strong motorsport roots. Sales figures for 2013 prove that porsche can’t do much wrong at the moment, in 2013 they saw a 3% increase in revenues and the Cayenne proved there best selling car taking 52% of total cars delivered by Porsche. This year will surely be a bumper year for Porsche with the release of the Macan, its compact SUV which already has a waiting list of over a year, the Porsche 918 which has completely sold out of its 918 models produced and the new GTS models which are sure to prove very popular with buyers. Porsches philosophy stretches right across there range, the manufacturer have jumped right on board with the Hybrid movement and introduced the technology across three of their ranges in the Panamera, Cayenne and 918. This exclusiveness is what makes Porsche one of the most exciting and driven marques available. This year also saw Porsche enter back into the Le Mans 24 hour race with its LMP1 the 919 creation piloted by the former F1 driver Mark Webber, these are exciting times for Porsche and something that everyone should want to be a part of.
The Porsche Centre at Silverstone is a perfect location for people to remember that Porsche are still a great motorsport brand. From just turning up at the centre the array of cars parked outside really shows off the variety available by Porsche, no other company can boast an assortment that includes SUV’s, four door GT and supercars. As soon as you walk into the main reception you are welcomed by a bright and airy atrium which is home to a handful of cars that have just been released, here you can get a proper look at the attention to detail and workmanship. Included in the atrium is a shop where you can purchase Porsche branded products and the iconic Martini livery thats available on clothes and merchandise.
Up above the ground floor is a restaurant serving three course meals and providing a great viewing point of the Porsche test track.
Porsche have recognised that the driver forms a crucial role in motorsport success, they have realised that without a fit driver, both mentally and physically the chances of winning can be cut dramatically. The Human Performance Centre is a room located on the ground floor that looks exclusively at the drivers performance, no stone is left unturned and the goal for the performance team is to improve the drivers fitness, reactions and ability to cope with the G forces exerted on a person. A heat chamber is used to get drivers acclimatised to the rigours of racing in hot countries.
The main part of the Porsche Experience Centre is of course the test track, the handling circuit contains corners and undulations designed to test any drivers driving skills. Porsche clarify that its not always how fast you drive but how correctly you brake and what line you take. This philosophy continues onto the kick plate where a hydraulic plate worked by a computer kicks the car into a skid, the driver must try and control the car without spinning. This fresh look at driving and the up to date technology involved within the test track facilities make this experience cutting edge and highly important in developing driver skills which are to readily overlooked in our everyday commute to and from places.
Porsche have developed an off road coursed designed to push the Porsche Cayenne to its maximum and demonstrate the many driver aids available to help with getting around the trickiest opposition. The 45% declines, rough terrain and side slopes promise a terrifying and unforgettable ride. A new addition to the Porsche Centre is The Straights, added to test the cars acceleration and braking using driver assistance such as launch control and lane assist.
Im sure you’re now thinking that my opening line regarding a certain upcoming festivity has been forgotten, and I did truly get into the flow of telling you how great the Porsche Centre is, but everything that I have spilled out onto this page can be experienced by you, the general public. And thats the great attraction to this place, Porsche have made a centre that enables you to drive some fantastic cars, learn some invaluable skills and have fun. There are many packages to choose from starting at £150 to £550 and nearly the whole Porsche range can be driven including the GT2 and GT3.
So if you’re stuck this christmas for the perfect present may I recommend this website www.porsche.com/silverstone it will definitely make someones day.
2nd December, 2014