You have to be minimum 27 years of age and for some special cars including the Classics, you have to be older. I drove the car that I rented, for about 270kms.
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I have been fascinated by Porsche since I was a kid. As some of you may have seen, I am always finding time to go to Porsche Centres here and there and press my nose yearningly to the windows in the manner of a child seeking a distant and highly desired toy in a toy shop. Some of you may have also seen the indefatigable mania that I have – Collecting Scale Models of all kinds and many many Porsches amongst them.
An Uncle of mine studied engineering in Germany (Stuttgart) and worked at Porsche for a time in the 1950’s. And I love their cars. No, I ardently adore their cars. Always have. Always will.
The Madness, the Method and Execution
This year, after a gap of 4 full years, and after much water has passed under the bridge of life, we decided, my wife and I, to make a holiday in the EU Zone with plenty of cars thrown in.
We usually try to plan early. Considering the wait times for visa appointments and all it is better to plan well in advance.
Anyway, long story short, we planned, amongst other things, to visit Stuttgart and specifically spend considerable time at the Porsche and the Mercedes Museums.
I am going to confine this thread to my Porsche Drive Experience which I had registered for and booked in advance a few months earlier. I had filled in all my details on their booking Page, made my choice of car, furnished my Credit Card details and all that mundane yet necessary stuff. I made sure to get my International Driving Permit and keep my Automobile Association Card too.
The Porsche Museum is Everything I imagined it to be. A wealth of beautifully presented detail. Teutonic Precision in every sense of the word. A real Pride and Joy for Porsche. It weaves its magic the moment you arrive and that magic never leaves you. It continues to tug at the heart long after you have left.
But more about that later and in another thread.
The Porsche Drive experience counter is right there at the entrance. All you have to do is show up at the appropriate time and they retrieve your pre-booking, inspect your documents, charge your card and hand over the keys, give you a short briefing if you desire it – and off you go, Vrooming off in your Dream Car.
Driven by Dreams. Thats is absolutely apt. You get the car for 24 hours inside of which you are allowed to do 300kms. You get it with Proper Insurance Coverage, a Full Tank of ‘Super’ included and you need to return it all properly topped up. I chose a Porsche Boxster S, 718, Flat 4, 350 HP. I could have chosen a 911 but I wanted the convertible. I love convertibles.
The cost for these Porsche Drive Experience rentals is about 349 -499 EURO depending on the car chosen. They also block your card for another 2500-5000 EURO as a security deposit, depending on the car that you choose. You have to have your original Driving License in English (minimum 5 years in possession of a Driving License) and International Driving Permit as well as your Passport as ID proof.
You have to be minimum 27 years of age and for some special cars including the Classics, you have to be older. I drove the car that I rented, for about 270kms. The cost of the Petrol that I used up was about 80 odd EURO.
They offer you a choice of beautiful roads through an app called Roads. But that doesn’t work on our Indian Phones. So I took a recommendation from the Drive Guys and chose to drive through the winding beautiful roads of the Black Forest Region and Freudenstadt and Alpirsbach and all, with just a little bit of Autobahn thrown in.
Driven by Dreams: Different Car. Same Dream.
I keep reliving my ‘Day of the Jackal’ moment where Edward Fox – ‘Le Chacal’ makes that momentous left turn to France and La Bastide TourTour in the Var on the Route Napoleon, instead of going back to Italy, while pulling up the hood of his Alfa Romeo Giulietta convertible and roaring away.
I also keep reliving my ‘On Days like These’ moment – the opening scene of the 1969 Italian Job with the Lamborghini Miura and that haunting Matt Monro melody.
To me, however, driving a Porsche is not about going flat out at stupendous speeds. It is much much more about the impeccably precise handling, the absolute, unrestricted availability of roaring power on tap, the engineering, the fit and finish, the top down experience, the inimitable growl, splutter, crackle, pop and burble of the engine and exhaust, the fun of shifting gears (albeit with the Paddle Shifters and the Manual Mode), the sheer joy of the wind in your hair and the sunshine in your face, the cold breeze rushing by and the superb evocative lifetime of memories and enjoyment that one can create. The joy of a thoroughbred racehorse is an analogy that comes to mind. The considerable photo opportunities of course are the icing on the (Black Forest) Cake!
(By the way, I took all the photos on my iPhone 12 Pro Max. Carrying the camera and all its paraphernalia is too cumbersome.)
I was an excited, adrenaline-fuelled child for the time I had that Porsche Boxster with me. It was mine for that time. And I could do with it (within reason) what I liked.
I am still excited, writing this, because of the memories. The adrenaline is still flowing. The smell of exhaust gases and petrol and the sound of that engine and the aesthetics of that beautiful machine are all swirling around in my head.
I’ll now also say a big thanks to my wife, who always smilingly supports me in my consuming passion for all things automotive.
Now let the pictures do the rest of the talking.
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