These 4 Examples Justify Why Porsche Has Successfully Built Cars For Genuine Driving Enthusiasts

These 4 Examples Justify Why Porsche Has Successfully Built Cars For Genuine Driving Enthusiasts

Gerald Yuen
Gerald Yuen
18 Jan 2023

Over the past couple of months, OneShift had exposure to Porsche activities in all forms in Thailand, from a local launch of the Porsche GT4 RS at Thailand International Motor Expo, to Das Treffen 7, flanked by media drives of Panamera and Cayenne Coupe E-Hybrids skirting bustling Bangkok metropolis via Muang Thong Thani, through the veins of the Kingdom’s former capital, Ayutthaya.

Granted, these experiences only reflect activities in one market. But the depth and dedication of Porsche’s pursuits are not to be trifled with. Back home in Singapore, artist Chris Labrooy held an art installation at Gardens By The Bay to much fanfare. He might be an acclaimed artist, but based on interactions with his fans on Instagram, discussions surrounding his Cayman GT4 are just like what you’d expect any petrolhead to encounter in an enthusiast car forum - gearing, spec, track prep, the list goes on. The keen driver that happens to be a renowned artist is perfect for Porsche’s branding.

Stakeholders of Porsche love the simple pleasure of driving. And judging by these examples we’re about to document during our time in Thailand, it doesn’t seem to waver any time soon…


1. That Motor Expo “secret”

Rumour has it that at the tail end of last year leading up to the local GT4 RS launch at Thailand International Motor Expo, its owner (yes it was sold before launch) drove up North, attacked notorious B roads, and returned just in time for rostrum duty. It had window tints prepped just as you would for a car that’s spoken for, and Pilot Sport Cup 2 distress signs hinting that it could have been driven with wild abandon.

No surprises - the GT4 RS was engineered to be driven hard and it’s one of the sharpest tools in Porsche’s shed. And there’s no better ambassador for that cause than the owner driving its guts out, days before it’s required to walk the red carpet with showroom-like splendour. No attempted press release would have done this scenario justice - something that’s barely discussed, and yet it’s one of the most epic “Porsche” stories we’ve heard in recent times.

2. Southeast Asia’s largest Porsche meet can wait…

You’d think that stakeholders of Das Treffen 7 would have their hands full leading up to an event covered by international media. Not for those that live and breathe Porsche. How does driving thousands of kilometres away from the event ground hours before show time sound? Bonkers at first, but standard fare for Renndrive participants.

Loading stacks of Porsches on flatbed trailers, starting drives at quaint border locations, making mega loops well into Laos and Vietnam hours before catching a breath at ASEAN’s largest Porsche meet-up. Would a week’s worth of grime on their Porsches put these owners in a spot of bother? Not one bit - the more the merrier. It’s the most unnecessary side story we never knew we needed.

3. Porsche’s DNA is here to stay

35 Porsche Taycans were sold at the Thailand International Motor Expo, just 4 less than the BMW iX3 and a staggering 15 more than the MINI Electric. While these figures are about as useful as explaining abstract art to a mathematician, it does question the relevance of Porsche’s hybrids in Thailand like the Panamera and Cayenne Coupe E-Hybrid. Owners of luxo-barge Porsches would most likely have access to a wall charger at home, elevating the Taycan’s utility factor. And those who crave for air-cooled goodness will chase classics on the other end of the Porsche spectrum.

Where does this leave E-Hybrids, then? We were invited to drive the E-Hybrid Platinum variants of the Panamera and Cayenne Coupe, and while the products’ range of abilities were amplified during extended hours of testing, they were backed up by the fact that owners of multiple Porsches were invited to a similar driving schedule (albeit to different provinces) in similar fleets we sampled. Judging by grins on their faces, E-Hybrid tech on Panameras and Cayenne Coupes not only excel at being superior “torque fillers” - they provide more family-oriented options to petrolheads too, without subtracting the fun factor.

4. Das Treffen 7: a cracking event occupied by itchy legs

Like cheetahs trapped in cages, those who pulled through the past couple of restrictive years unscathed must be raring to let loose in the most extravagant manner. For Porsche in Thailand, Das Treffen 7 served as a springboard to reunite with fellow owners and secure an even larger enthusiast following. Think along the lines of world class Thai hospitality paired with passion for all things Porsche.

Armed with a limited command of the Thai language, I fumbled my way through conversations with some owners who willingly listed specs and timelines of their ride(s) like a human Wikipedia. And of course, each exchange included plans of their next drive, mostly on northern expeditions tackling the Mae Hong Son loop stretching more than 600 kilometres. That next spurt of adrenaline is around the corner - I left Das Treffen with the suspicion that it almost felt like torture for owners keeping their cars static for the weekend. That’s the true, unhinged lure of Porsche’s community.

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