At the GIMS 1977, Porsche presented the Porsche 928.
In the wake of the 1970s oil crisis, Porsche was considering adding a more fuel-efficient luxury touring car to the line-up. They also considered that the 911, the then-current flagship model, was reaching the limits of its potential… The future of Porsche relied upon GT cars with conventional engines rather than unconventional sports cars, according to Ernst Fuhrmann, the Managing Director.
The decision was made to create the best mix of sports coupe and luxury limousine, similar to the offerings from Mercedes-Benz and BMW. The layout chosen was front-engine/RWD, in order to free up space for the passengers and approach a 50/50 weight distribution. And as Porsche’s main market was the USA, it had to be equipped with a V8.
Thus the 928 was born, whose line alone, designed by Wolfgang Möbius and Anatole Lapine, is today a symbol of the 1980s. Its mission: to replace the 911.
From 1978 to 1995, 61,056 units of the Porsche 928 were produced. In 1987 a facelift was carried out with a new rear end. The V8 also underwent numerous modifications: from 4.5 l and 240 PS in 1978, it was progressively increased up to 5.4 l and 350 PS in 1992. Several versions of the 928 were also produced, including the very exclusive and now much sought-after CS (19 units) and SE (42 units, UK only).
The Porsche 928 also introduced several tech innovations: its aluminium V8 and steel / aluminium bodywork set new standards in lightweight construction. The rear axle, named “Weissach”, provided passive rear steering for better stability in corners. This principle is still the basis of Porsche chassis today.
In 1978, the 928 won the European Car of the Year award, ahead of the BMW 7 Series and the Ford Granada. To this day, it remains the only sports car to have won this award.
From the mid-1980s onwards, the 928 was also used as the basis for numerous studies, including a five-door model that would become the Panamera in 2009. Meanwhile, the 911 never left the range, even becoming the 928’s heir in 1996….