Throwback Thursday: Porsche proudly brands their best 911 sports cars as Porsche Carrera’s, but what is the meaning of Carrera?
One reference states that in Spanish Carrera was originally a topographic name for someone living by a main road. A carrera “thoroughfare” was originally a road passable by vehicles as well as pedestrians. However, a further search of the Internet has the site Interglot defining the Spanish to English definition as being a competition, a contest or a race. This latter definition may come as a result of why Porsche actually chose the name Carrera for their Porsches fitted with high-revving racing engines.
It all started in 1954 at the Carrera Panamericana race held in Mexico that is 1,907 miles long, run over crazy roads throughout Mexico. The works Ferrari with a five-liter engine and 330 HP won the race at an average speed of 107.5 mph ahead of the second place similarly powered Ferrari. The surprise was the third place finisher, Hans Hermann in a Porsche 550/1500 RS Spyder. This Porsche racecar had a new engine with a1.5-liter capacity producing 110 hp in a 1,212-pound car. The average speed over the course of the race was 97 mph.
The agile, lightweight mid-engine Porsche with this special high-revving engine designed by Dr. Ernst Fuhrmann was given the soon fitted in a production 1955 Porsche Type A 356 where it was given the name the 356A GS Carrera.
All Porsches with this high-revving engine special engine continued to receive the name Carrera up to the 906 Carrera 6 in 1966. The original Carrera engine was replaced in the late-1960’s and the name Carrera was then only used for very special Porsche Sports Cars such as the 911 Carrera RS 2.7 launched in 1972.
In 1984 Porsche then started using the Carrera to enhance their Porsche 911 G-body model in order to enhance the sales of this vehicle. The brand Carrera has stuck with the Porsche 911 since that date with the badge Carrera proudly sitting on the rear deck lid of every Porsche 911 model from the 1984 G-body to the current Porsche 911 992 model of today.
Tags: Carrera name, Porsche Carrera