First ancestor of all Porsche sports cars on show in America for the first time


The Museum run by Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG, Stuttgart, Germany, is sending its legendary Type 64 Berlin-Rome Car on a long journey. Befitting the 60th anniversary of Porsche in America, the aluminium body of Type 64 will be presented from 21 March to 20 June 2010 at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Georgia (USA), taking the first and most prominent exhibit at the Porsche Museum in Zuffenhausen to a new location outside of Germany for the first time.

The High Museum of Art is one of the world’s leading art museums. In its special exhibition “The Allure of the Automobile”, the High Museum of Art is expressing its recognition of outstanding automotive developments in the period 1930 to 1960, focusing on differences in the development of American and European design. Type 64 will be presented next to other icons in the world of the automobile from Bugatti, Duesenberg, Jaguar, Ferrari, Pierce Arrow, Packard, Cadillac and Tucker as a synthesis of innovative construction and design, supreme craftsmanship, and exceptional design.

Type 64 is of very special significance to the history of the Porsche brand: Built in 1938/39 under the guidance of Ferdinand Porsche, this unique car already had all the features that make sports cars from Zuffenhausen so very special the world over to this day: lightweight construction and superior aerodynamics, exceptional performance, reliable technology, and that unique design so characteristic of a Porsche. Originally developed for the Berlin-Rome long-distance race, Type 64, due to the war, never entered a race in its lifetime. But it marks an essential milestone en route to the first Porsche, Type 356 built in 1948.

The car’s streamlined aluminium body already showed distinctive indications later to be admired in all of Porsche’s sports cars, its DNA living on in the Porsche 356 through the Porsche 911 all the way to the Panamera. The symbiosis of motorsport requirements and the use of production elements made the car a perfect grand tourer able to reach an average speed on public roads back in 1939 of more than 130 km/h or 80 mph. No surprise, therefore, that Ferdinand Porsche himself used Type 64 for long journeys.

Accompanying the new construction of the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen, the aluminium body of Type 64 was re-built by experts in years of painstaking craftsmanship. Ever since the Museum was opened in January 2009, Type 64 has marked the beginning of the Museum Tour thrilling visitors from all over the world through its cultural impact and unique flair alone.

While Type 64 is being presented to the public in Atlanta, the Porsche Museum will be displaying the skeleton structure of the Type 64 body until the end of June 2010 – a skeleton made of wood upon which the 1.2-millimetre aluminium panels were hammered into shape.

Source: Porsche (press release/media site)