Porsche - Editorial

Cast in Friendship. What is passion? The dictionary defines it as a strong feeling of enthusiasm, or an intense, driving emotion that can become obsessive. For a person, an object, or an activity—there’s no difference as far as our minds are concerned. A hundred billion nerve cells and a hundred trillion synapses are always at the ready. Neuroplasticity is what medical researchers call it. What does that have to do with cars? It’s very simple: you can love them, passionately.

“The love for a car can be amazingly similar to the love between people,” says Berlin-based sociologist Christa Bös. She sees common ground between passion and intimacy—not least of all in the desire for lasting or even lifelong attachment. When researchers at Ulm University showed young men photos of different types of cars and then asked which ones they liked best, the sports car topped the list. This is hardly surprising. But the amazing part was that MRIs showed strong activity in the nucleus accumbens. This part of the brain reinforces learning and pleasure and is also a reward center that responds to positive experiences like a good meal, music, a special word, a glance, a touch—or a Porsche.

Take Karsten Schumann, a physician, an owner of a 911 Carrera 4 GTS in Rhodium Silver, and the president of Porsche Club Westfalen. This Porsche Club is the oldest in the world: it was founded in 1952, four years after Porsche 356 No. 1 was debuted. One could celebrate this sixty-fifth anniversary in grand style. But what does Schumann do? He sits delightedly with his fellow club members on the worn wood outside a newsstand in Dortmund for a photo, has nothing good to say about show-offs, and is thrilled about the anniversary tour to Tuscany. “We’re a bunch of nuts,” he jokes.

A tradition of passion. Loyalty to a community. The 210,000 Club members around the world are part of the Porsche identity. Pure enthusiasm. Cast in friendship, like at the Porsche Club Westfalen. Rekindled time and again like at the Luftgekühlt vintage car festival in Los Angeles. Or cut into the asphalt for eternity to commemorate—ninety years at the Nürburgring.

Passion, says psychoanalyst Erich Fromm in The Art of Loving, is people’s attempt to give meaning to their lives and to experience the greatest possible intensity and power under the conditions available to them. Can a car give meaning to life? Can love for a car be sinful? To the mind, it doesn’t matter. It says yes. And no.

Wherever you have come from, wherever you are going, our Christophorus will accompany you.

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