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The Wow of Wunderland Porsche Museum

Porsche Santa Clarita houses world class collection

1997 Porsche GT1
The Wunderland “centerpiece” when I visited was this 1997 Porsche GT1, the first of a small run to compete in the 1997 FIA GT Championship. Note the rotating turn table. © 2022 Rex McAfee.

Unlikely Home for a Spectacular Collection:

Remember the days of going to a Porsche dealership as a teen? How could anyone resist wanting to leave their fingerprints all over a new 911 Turbo in Arctic Silver? It was just a matter of time before the salesman reluctantly got up to ask, “Can I help you?” using a tone of voice that meant, “Beat it, kid.” On a few occasions, I was brave enough to “procure” a factory sales brochure on the way out, but those moments were rare. Over three decades later, visiting Porsche Santa Clarita in Southern California brought back some of that childhood excitement. There’s no substitute for the sight and smell of a new Porsche sitting on a showroom floor, and today would even be more special for what lay one floor below; Wunderland. 

replica of the 1948 Porsche “001” roadster
This replica of the 1948 Porsche “001” roadster epitomizes Porsche’s simple design approach eschewing anything that isn’t functional. © 2022 Rex McAfee.
2015 Porsche 918 Spyder
Showcasing Porsche’s hybrid technology “supercar” was a 2015 Porsche 918 Spyder on display. © 2022 Rex McAfee.

Proceed to the Elevator:

Resisting the temptation to circle a new Cayman GT4 in the showroom, I proceeded to the elevator doors against the back wall. Once inside, I pressed the button labeled “WU” to commence my journey (no passport required). As the doors opened, a chamber of history was revealed of the fabled German marque. Ranging from the 1948 Porsche #001 roadster replica to a 2015 918 Sypder “supercar,” you’re greeted with an assortment of Porsches that exemplify the ingenuity of three generations of the Porsche family. Early examples include the VW-influenced model 356 that would earn the manufacturer’s first class win at the Le Mans 24, the ultimate test of endurance. Various examples of the 911, Porsche’s most successful model, expose the evolution from its beginnings in the 1960s to the ultimate “one-car solution” of today.

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