1963 Porsche 901 – Ultimate Guide
In 1963 Porsche introduced their seminal 901 at the 911 at the Frankfurt Motor Show which would be renamed 911 for the 1964 model year. The new car was sold alongside the 356C as an alternative wth more power and room for a rear seat.
The massive undertaking of replacing the 356 began as early as 1959 with Ferdinand Alexander “Butzi” Porsche largely responsible for the project. By 1961 the first clay models were being made and in July of 1964 the first prototypes were being made. Compared to the 356 it had a longer wheelbase, a more compact suspension setup and much more power from the flat-6 engine. At the 1963 Frankfurt show the public saw Porsches new direction.
At the Internationale Automobil-Ausstellung (Frankfurt Motor Show) in Frankfurt in September 1963, Porsche presented the 901. It took several more months until the cars were manufactured for sale to customers. Between 14 September and 16 November 1964, 82 cars were built and the 901 was presented in October at the 1964 Paris Auto Salon. There, French car maker Peugeot objected to Porsche using any three digit number where the middle number was 0, asserting ownership of the naming rights in key markets, and having already sold many models with that scheme.