Since 1977 Karl Ludvigsen's Porsche: Excellence Was Expected has been regarded as the definitive work on Porsche history. In this masterwork Ludvigsen presents the inner workings, masterpieces and failures of an independent automaker that has exerted a disproportionately powerful influence on the automotive industry.
Remarkable both for its breadth of coverage and its technical depth, Porsche: Excellence Was Expected covers every Porsche road and racing car from the company's beginnings through the development of the 2009 Panamera. Adding dimension to the Porsche story is Ludvigsen's assessment of the company's designers, chief engineers and top managers over the years.
In this first revision since 2003, Ludvigsen has updated the three-volume set through 2008, including five augmented chapters, five completely new chapters, and 230 new images. The five new chapters feature full-color artwork throughout and bring the total number of photographs, diagrams and illustrations in the set to just over 1800.
Click here to view a selection of excerpts from
Porsche: Excellence Was Expected
At 66 chapters and 1688 pages, this monumental work covers over a century of Porsche history. Ludvigsen's new material includes the continuing evolution of the iconic 911, detailing the design and engineering of the Type 997. He also looks at the market success of the Cayenne, the enthusiastic press and customer responses to the Cayman and Cayman S, and Porsche's expansion into the four-door luxury sedan arena with the Panamera. Competition coverage is expanded to include the domination of the RS Spyder in the ALMS series as well as the on-track success of the 997-based GT racers. And Ludvigsen looks closely at Wendelin Wiedeking's financially savvy stewardship of the Porsche company through the first decade of the twenty-first century.
Click here to read a Panorama interview with Karl Ludvigsen on the writing of
Porsche: Excellence Was Expected
With this edition, Porsche: Excellence Was Expected remains "the definitive archetypal marque history," (Michael Scarlett, Autocar) that it was in its first edition. Karl Ludvigsen continues to set the bar high for automotive historians, just as the company he chronicles continues to shape our very definition of the term "sports car."
"The English-language reprint builds consistently on the standard reference work on Porsche first published in 1977. Since the first edition, 'Ludvigsen' has become a watchword, a trademark for comprehensive information about the sports car manufacturer from Zuffenhausen. The new version of the 'Porsche Bible' contains everything from the first edition and much more: Facts and shop-talk, stories and history, anecdotes and quirks, data and statistics on Porsche, the company and its cars. Now, the thick 900-page first edition has become a three-volume linen-bound, slipcase-boxed set of truly biblical dimensions - with a total of 1574 pages."
- Christophorus Magazine
Watch a short video tour of some of the new content and features in this brand-new edition of Porsche: Excellence Was Expected.
The successes of the rear-engined Auto Union (here in the 1935 Coppa Acerbo) brought worldwide fame to the still-new Porsche design organization.
At the Watkins Glen Six Hours, 1970, a Carrera 6 (Bartling/ Peterman/Ranier) leads the third-place finisher, a Ferrari 512S (Andretti/Giunti). Victory went to two Porsche 917's.
Porsche brazenly broke free of its sport-car niche with the launch of its Leipzig-built Cayenne in 2002. In this sport-utility developed in cooperation with Volkswagen, the emphasis was on "sport."
At Sebring in January of 2008 the Penske team's RS Spyder strutted its stuff in the ALMS practice session, showing that despite a weight penalty it still had the credentials to lead the field.
1988 Type 911 Carrera.