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Porsche Vision 357 – 75 years of Porsche sports cars

26.01.2023 By Richard Lindhorst
Porsche Vision 357 – 75 years of Porsche sports cars

Porsche celebrates its 75th anniversary in 2023. The 911 is also celebrating a milestone birthday this year. It will be 60 years old. Porsche has now announced a series of activities to mark the anniversary. They started their celebrations with the presentation of the Porsche Vision 357 design study. It was made in honor of the 356 No. 1 Roadster, which received its operating license on June 8, 1948, which marks Porsche’s official 75th birthday.

The Porsche Vision 357’s design is called “monolithic”

The Style Porsche team began by asking itself the question: What would Ferry Porsche’s dream of a sports car have looked like today? In homage to this, the design forge attempted to combine two approaches. Both the design language of the Porsche 356 and the design language of the present day, dubbed “monolithic,” were to enter into a symbiosis. In this way, the Porsche Vision 357 is also intended to anticipate possible manifestations of the future design philosophy. The team is particularly proud of the “consistent enhancement of the light signature, which is both progressive and visionary in the way it points towards the future”.

Porsche Vision 357 Design sketch

„The design study (Porsche Vision 357) is an attempt to combine the past, present and future with coherency, featuring proportions that are reminiscent of its historical archetype and details that visualise the outlook for the future.“

Michael Mauer, head of Style Porsche on the design of the Porsche Vision 357, which was presented in Berlin, starting celebrations for 75 years of Porsche sports cars.

To adequately showcase the proportions of the 356 in the Porsche Vision 357, Style Porsche focused on the narrowest possible passenger cell with a silhouette that slopes early to the rear and wide fenders. As on the historic 356, the windshield is drawn sharply around the A-pillar. Unlike early 356s, however, it doesn’t feature a two-part windshield with a center bar. The Porsche Vision 357 is more independent here. It does not go for the bent windshield reminiscent of the 356 from 1952 onwards. Instead, it relies on a domed windshield that looks not unlike that of the Le Mans prototype Porsche 963 LMDh. Porsche itself talks about the windshield forming a DLO (Daylight Opening) graphic through the black A-pillars. It therefore should be reminiscent of a helmet’s visor.

The Porsche Vision 357 is technically based on the Porsche Cayman GT4 RS

While the Porsche 356 was based on the Volkswagen and also borrowed its rear-engined layout, Porsche broke new ground with the Vision 357. It is mid-engined and shares the technical basis with the Cayman GT4 RS. For example, both have their intake ducts in place of the rear side windows. Very unusual for a design study, the Porsche Vision 357 also boasts a number of technical refinements. It rolls on 20-inch magnesium wheels with carbon fiber trim and center locks. The Porsche wheels from the 356 A and B were the inspiration. They had an unusually large bolt circle of 205 millimeters.

The body itself relies on technology that was already used in the Mission R electric racer study. Its fenders are made of natural fiber-reinforced plastic (NFK). This is based on flax fibers from agriculture. The concealed door openers next to the side windows and the taillights under a dot-shaped gradient pattern are also exciting details. Another eye-catching design borrowed from racing can be found up front. The front wheel arches end in the rear area clearly above the sill edge. According to Porsche, this allows better wheel arch ventilation. To round things up, a seamless front hood with quick-release fasteners is used. The Porsche Vision 357 does not have classic rearview mirrors. Instead, cameras are used on the edge of the roof.

The paint scheme uses Ice Grey and Grivola Grey, popular 1950s shades of grey

While the so-called four-point light signet of the headlights quotes the current Porsche design language, the headlight shape itself is round – as in the 356. The color choice, on the other hand, is a duet of popular 1950s greys. Grivola Grey is used on the lower section of the front end. The rest of the Porsche Vision 357 is painted in Ice Grey. The “75” anniversary logo is proudly emblazoned on the doors and front. It marks the company’s upcoming birthday. It is complemented by striking red 357 lettering on the front fenders.

Where can you see the Porsche Vision 357?

„Thinking out loud about the future is one of the core missions of Style Porsche. Design studies are the pool of ideas that feed the design of tomorrow“, states Michael Mauer. He debunks the supposed paradox of Porsche citing its 75-year history as inspiration when considering the future of mobility as follows: „We are perpetually on the conceptual journey into the future of mobility. Time and again, the brand history serves as a source of inspiration. Taking a look back at our tradition with a future concept car is not as paradoxical as it might seem. Creative freedom is also important: this is where valuable ideas can emerge unfettered, ones that help us imagine our consistent design philosophy in innovative new directions“.

From January 27, 2023, the Porsche Vision 357 study can be viewed live. It is the highlight of the special exhibition “75 Years of Porsche Sports Cars” at the Volkswagen Group Forum “DRIVE” in Berlin. The Vision 357 is to be part of the exhibition until mid-February. It will then be presented at South by Southwest in Austin, Texas. The Porsche Vision 357 can be admired there from March 10, 2023.

More celebrations to mark 75 years of Porsche coming up

Porsche also announced further celebrations of the 75th anniversary of Porsche sports cars during the presentation of the Vision 357. We can already look forward to seeing what will be on show at Retro Classics in Stuttgart from February 23. In addition, an extensive special exhibition will open at the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen on June 9.

Porsche will be staging the “Festival of Dreams” at the Hockenheimring on the weekend of June 10/11. Among other things, vehicle exhibitions, Dream Talks and live acts around the 75th anniversary of the Porsche brand have been announced for this. In addition to a live broadcast of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the Porsche Carrera Cup Benelux and Germany will be held on site, as will the ADAC GT Masters.

© Porsche AG

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