Home Porsche History Ferdinand Porsche-Genesis of Genius

Reviews & press coverage

"Many books have covered the history of Porsche and his designs from the 1930s onward, but a comprehensive account in English of Porsche"s earlier years has not been available. It was worth the wait. Karl Ludvigsen worked in close consultation with Porsche"s eldest grandson, Ernst Piëch, whose collection of written materials, drawings, and photographs constitute a major part of the book. The inclusion of many technical drawings from this collection usually resolves the occasional difficulties in following the verbal descriptions of chassis, engines, and other components - a common problem in technical histories. One of the highlights is a set of eight beautifully rendered cutaway drawings of Porsche"s designs by Wolfgang Franke. Not only are these drawings useful for comprehending technical details, they stand as works of art in their own right . . . Automotive historians along with historians of twentieth-century mechanical technologies will find something of interest in virtually every one of these pages."

Technology and Culture
October 2010, Vol. 51

" . . . the genius of Ferdinand Porsche leaps out even before this massive book is opened!"

PurelyPorsche.com

"This thing- which weighs about as much as a manhole cover- is definitely one of the most beautiful car books I"ve ever seen, and it will make the other car books on your coffee table look like Go, Dog Go."

Jalopnik.com
Sun Oct 4 2009

"To sum up, this is an exhaustive survey of the origins and work of one of the great automobile engineers of the 20th. century; as such it is an important work but it is also eminently readable, beautifully produced and illustrated with some stunning and original images. It can be highly recommended and should find its way into any serious collection of motoring books."

Vintage Sports Car Club Bulletin [UK]
No. 265 Autumn 2009

"So, the man who had such influence on our abiding passion is brought vividly to life, thanks in no small part to the huge amount of new material that Karl Ludvigsen has so painstakingly unearthed through sheer hard slog and weighty research. . . . This book meets all the criteria of written greatness and is without parallel."

Porsche Post
December 2008

"[T]his is not a book for casual perusal at bedtime. But if you want to know how it all started, explore the story of the fascinating man at the beginning of the Porsche saga, it is here in every detail . . . This one is for the serious student of Porsche history."

Porsche Panorama
November 2008

"Worth a look . . . and a gift-wrapping."

Road & Track
December 2008

"...lavishly illustrated and written ... wonderfully presented"

911 & Porsche World
November 2008

"This in-depth journey details the development of Porsche cars through many different iterations, various systems of propulsion, world records and hand built coachwork. This is the story not only of Ferdinand Porsche, but the early years of all motor car development and a fascinating, albeit technical read for the true fanatic."

All Torque
October 2008

"If you"ve been a reader of car magazines since there was such a thing, you know the name Karl Ludvigsen ... the man knows his stuff."

Hemmings Sports & Exotic Car
November 2008

"Karl Ludvigsen"s new book on the first of the Porsche dynasty shines new light on the genius that started it all."

Porsche Panorama
July 2008
Karl Ludvigsen
Karl Ludvigsen

In addition to his motor industry activities as an executive (with GM, Fiat and Ford) and head of a consulting company, Karl Ludvigsen has been active for over 50 years as an author and historian. As an author, co-author or editor he has some four dozen books to his credit. Needless to say, they are all about cars and the motor industry, Karl's life-long passion.

More about Karl Ludvigsen