Porsche Driving Experience Centre Revs Up
Porsche this week officially opens its Driving Experience Centre adjacent to the famous Silverstone Grand Prix circuit in Northamptonshire. The world-class centre allows every customer of a new Porsche in the UK and Ireland to receive expert tuition in their driving skills as well as the performance capabilities of their car as part of their purchase experience.
Advances in modern automotive engineering and design mean today's sports cars are more efficient, safer, faster and more complex than ever before. The level to which a driver understands the engine and chassis control systems on their car not only makes them a responsible road user, but also ultimately determines their overall level of driving satisfaction as well - and it is the thoroughbred nature of the driving experience which distinguishes a Porsche.
One of the core philosophies of the Porsche research and development development team at Weissach, Germany, is to develop Porsche specific technology that enhances the connection between the driver, the car and the road. The new Driving Experience Centre at Silverstone offers Porsche customers with the opportunity to really understand the practical benefits of this engineering integrity that is the foundation of every Porsche.
The Porsche Driving Experience Centre aims to build on these principles of driving safety and driving enjoyment by providing a formal, yet fun, environment for both Porsche owners and enthusiasts to have the opportunity to understand the engine performance and chassis dynamics attributes which differentiate a Porsche from its rivals.
"This unique facility is a major investment for Porsche Cars GB and it will allow us to create a unique experience for customers that cannot be bettered in the UK market," commented Andy Goss, Managing Director, Porsche Cars Great Britain. "The two core themes that run through each guest's experience here are learning and choice. Learning about their car and their driving, but also learning about the world of Porsche so that they can make informed choices. Giving every Porsche new car customer a thorough understanding of what lies beneath the skin of their car will endorse their decision to buy the best."
The Porsche Driving Experience Centre offers a variety of track configurations and surface conditions on which the potential of all Porsche road cars can be studied, together with, uniquely, the human performance level of drivers themselves.
With a total length of 3.1km, the track has been designed to allow it to be split into four separate areas that can be used independently of each other or connected together to form a longer handling circuit. This environment will allow Porsche customers to be instructed through a variety of different situations in wet and dry conditions, as well as simulating ice and snow driving with the use of specially constructed surfaces.
The variety of track environments encompasses a challenging off-road course, around which the versatility of the Cayenne can be demonstrated. Significant features include a 1:1 hill, a daunting stretch of water and a drive route across a mixture of rugged terrain.
The Porsche Driving Experience Centre houses reception and display areas, a restaurant, cinema and the innovative Human Performance department. This leading edge sports laboratory is run by proven specialists and is accessible to both Porsche customers and racing drivers. Ordinarily, this type of facility would only be accessible to elite athletes. One-to-one instruction spans fitness assessments and guidance in techniques aimed at improving stamina, co-ordination and reaction times for drivers of all levels.
The bespoke Centre building features distinctive Porsche architectural cues on the outside but, like the Porsche road cars themselves, employs the latest technology to significantly lower its energy demands, and hence its environmental impact. Visitors can see the entire Porsche facility from a roof top platform offering panoramic views.
"We have based our Driving Experience Centre at Silverstone for the good practical reasons you would expect; location, access, facilities and international reputation," added Andy Goss. "However, the relationship is uniquely special in that over the past 60 years Porsche and Silverstone have both stayed within their original ownership and remain fiercely independent."