Just look at it. What a body. Wonderful! If Marilyn Monroe were a machine, she would definitely look like this 356.
I admit it wasn’t that simple. I wasn't looking for a 356 in particular but basically for a car with a timeless design. That doesn’t give you an awful lot of choice. The look is a really important aspect to me. The design has to be appealing. And so does the entire shape of the car. The 356 meets all these demands.
In Germany, in Bavaria to be more precise. But it didn’t look like that when I bought it. To be honest, the car was in terrible shape. But after a few intensive hours of treatment at the cosmetician, it shines as brightly as ever and is certainly one of the most beautiful of its kind in the world.
Mark Webber is gazing at this Porsche — his Porsche 356 — with a happy smile and well, looks like an ordinary guy. A guy whose dream has come true.
At least for the most part, yes. Absolutely. Then again, I'm also fascinated by the era of beautiful women like Marilyn. I just love that timeless feeling of the 1950s.
Definitely the dashboard. These small and round instruments, the thin, almost fragile steering wheel. And it’s a very simple car, everything is clearly arranged, it’s very compact. There are three instruments: speedometer, rev counter and heat indicator. The co-driver is sitting right next to the driver. There's room for a sheet of paper between the two but not more than that.
The dashboard is the most appealing part of the 356. These small and round instruments, the thin, almost fragile steering wheel.
A little, yes. Not much, though. I just love looking at this car. Of course, I’d also like to drive it and I certainly will if there is an opportunity.
Even before I came here, I already knew it would be unique. But to be honest, I didn’t think it would be this unique. The way they welcomed and accepted me as a new driver here really stunned me. I’m just one of many drivers. Ok, there was a time at the F1, but at the end of the day, I’m just the guy from Australia, so why should I be more accepted than anybody else. It was a great and very warm welcome at the beginning, nobody put me on a pedestal or anything, I was just very well received. That’s something that really works ideally here at the Porsche family.
That and the emotion that Porsche conveys about its past. You are well aware of the company history at all times and you just feel the myth, everything behind what you’re driving down the street. That’s what makes the brand so strong and also romantic to a certain extent.
“The way they welcomed and accepted me as a new driver here really stunned me.“
Depends on what you mean by “old“. I’ve driven the 911 GT1 from 1998. But thinking about really old cars that I’ve driven, a Lotus comes to mind spontaneously, one of Jochen Rindt’s cars. It was the worst car I’ve ever driven. Horrible.
Definitely the grip. What has changed least is the power, you had that in these days too. Today, the engines are of course much more efficient. Another thing that has been significantly improved are the materials used and the techniques of processing and molding them. This again leads to other innovations and opportunities in terms of aerodynamics. Compared to the past, we might not have more power, but we’re able to brake much later and far more abruptly. Thanks to the automatic transmission, we clutch much faster and take bends considerably faster too.
I think we can be proud of our performance. That’s also what I said to the team immediately after the race. And that’s what we are taking home from Le Mans this year. Now we want to lead the race after 22 hours in 2015 too, but that will mean a whole lot of work again. We shouldn't think that we will make it again next year just because we were leading this year. That’s not my mentality or that of Porsche, either. We have to continue to work hard, respect the competitors, but we want to repeat our performance next year and then bring the car back home as well.
With success comes expectation. But that’s not just true for sports, it’s true for any business. If you’re good at something, expectations rise and so does the pressure. Porsche wants to deliver a good performance in Le Mans, nobody’s ever doubted that. And that means that Porsche wants to win Le Mans. It’s as simple as that.
You can’t really compare it. Driving a 919 hybrid is a lot more dramatic than driving a street-legal car. Everything is much faster, much more direct. Emotionally speaking, it’s my job. I focus on doing a good job. When driving on the street, it’s much more about the pleasure of…