Road Trip

Here's how to research the perfect road trip

Make sure you pick the right vehicle. The one shown here is the one millionth Porsche 911 that was produced.

Photo courtesy of Porsche AG

The United States is opening back up for businesses. You might not want to hop on a plane anytime soon, but you can't kick the feeling that you want to get away. Enter: the road trip.

In a recent interview with Porsche, Stefan Bogner, creative director, Curves magazine, divulged his tips for preparing the perfect road trip as part of the #GetCreativeWithPorsche series. Here are some of Bogner's top tips, paired with insight from the AutomotiveMap team.

Take your time.

It's never too early to start planning, even if you're just looking.

"The most important thing is to take your time," said Bogner. "If you were planning a month-long holiday, you'd take a long time getting it all just right. It's the same with a road trip: preparation is key."

Use a variety of sources to gather information.

Porsche maps display office research

Photo courtesy of Porsche AG

Don't just rely on sites like TripAdvisor. Hotels.com, or Yelp to shape your itinerary. Use them as a starting point. Ask your friends and family for recommendations. Read blogs, check out the visitors and convention bureau website, and browse local publications for insights on local flavor.

Brush up on how to read a map.

"I am old-school and I love to study paper maps and guide books," shared Bogner. "Get to grips with reading a map and you'll get a better sense of place and perspective."

If you're someone who gets lost even when looking at the "downtown area" handout hotels give out, perhaps it's time to invest a few hours in honing your skills.

Don't forget to check the weather.

Check out predicted weather when you begin planning and keep an eye on it in the weeks and days leading up to the trip. If you've had a particularly wet spell, some roads may not be passable, nature preserves may be closed, and low-lying areas may be impassible. Consider getting a professional-grade weather app for your phone.

If your road trip includes going off-road (or even on the road less traveled), learn to read basic topographic maps.

Porsche maps

Photo courtesy of Porsche AG

Bogner explains: "Look for the green roads, as these are the scenic ones, and pay attention to the contour lines to get an idea of the topography. When you really study a physical map, the brain starts to absorb the information and when you come to drive a route, you'll know much better where you are."

Timing is everything.

"My one timing rule is to avoid school holidays," said Bogner in the interview. "I never go anywhere in July and August. Don't be afraid to ask the locals the best time of year to visit their area, as no one will know the answer better than them. I was once planning a trip to Scotland and thought the summer would be the perfect time to go but a friend advised me to wait until October. I had the most amazing two weeks of sunshine with no rain. In Scotland!"

Time of day is important too. Try for a mid-week visit to a popular museum, late afternoon visit to a park, a morning walk along the waterway to watch the sunrise. Don't be afraid to contact an attraction and ask when their least busy times are and find out when school groups tend to arrive.

Plan for hours and miles.

Bogner says it best, "Have a rough idea of how far you want to drive each day but make sure you give yourself time to enjoy the trip, rather than running a tight schedule and insisting on being in a certain place by a precise time. Savour the scenery and enjoy the driving. If you take your time and you're open to conversations when you fill up with fuel you'll meet interesting people along the way."

Use social media to find out what to expect.

Want to visit a museum or park? Don't just look at the sanitized version that their PR team puts out on social media. Many social media platforms allow users to tag themselves as being at a location. Click on those tags and find out more about what you can expect.

See if a driving tour is offered.

Porsche 911 Maria, Texas

Photo courtesy of Porsche AG

Many localities offer a driving tour of their local attractions, countryside, etc. Want to discover local agriculture? Plan a wine tasting spree? See a series of historical sites? Just want to go for a drive? There is probably a map for that. Local motorcycle enthusiasts often chart their drives on MotorcycleRoads.com, which can be used as a resource as well.

Ask for recommendations once you arrive.

​"Local contacts can also suggest their favorite museums (I have discovered some amazing private air museums in America this way) and restaurants," Bogner said. "I am a real foodie so I enjoy researching amazing places to eat."

Be sure to ask locals for restaurant recommendations, and not just he concierge staff at the hotel. When you ask, find out what dishes they recommend. If you do stay in a hotel with a concierge, ask them if there anything you need to know when making a reservation. Sometimes, they have line-skipping tricks up their sleeve.

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Nuts & Bolts

 
 

Porsche has given the Panamera a generational makeover for 2021.

Photo courtesy of Porsche AG

Porsche is blending performance and practicality with the 2021 Porsche Panamera. The next-gen model has design enhancements brining it into line with the rest of the modern Porsche lineup and a host of new powertrain options reflecting the company's commitment to alternative powertrains.

The exterior of the new Panamera isn't a complete departure from the old. In fact, it's just subtle tweaks. Each model now comes standard with the SportDesign fascia (previously an option). Buyers can upgrade to the SportDesign package, with or without carbon fiber. The Panamera GTS gets this fascia in Satin Black and the Panamera Turbo S has a unique take as well, including a specific front light signature.

2021 Porsche Panamera The previously available Sport Design front fascia is now standard.Photo courtesy of Porsche AG

At the rear, the Panamera has Porsche's new signature light strip that spans the width of the haunch-heavy model. This is a design similar to the 911 and Cayenne. The lower rear fascia has new diffuser fins.

A new 20-inch wheel design and two new 21-inch wheel designs are available. The Panamera Turbo S gets 21-inch 911 Turbo Design wheels. The Panamera GTS runs on GTS-specific Satin Black 20-inch Panamera Design wheels. An Ultra High Performance Summer tire is available on Panamera models for the first time.

Porsche has given its GTS model additional enhancements including Exclusive Design tinted taillights as well as black lettering and model designations. This version of the Panamera gets the available Sport Exhaust System as standard equipment.

Two new paint options are available - Cherry Red Metallic and Truffle Brown Metallic.

2021 Porsche Panamera The Panamera now comes with a host of new engine options.Photo courtesy of Porsche AG

Standard Panamera models will now feature a twin-turbocharged 2.9 liter engine that makes 325 horsepower. This engine replaces the previous turbocharged 3.0-liter unit.

Porsche has replaced with the Panamera Turbo with the Turbo S. The new Panamera Turbo S gets enhancements to its crankshaft, connecting rods, timing chain drive and torsional vibration dampers, and fuel injectors. It also will have a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 at its heart making 620 horsepower and 604 pound-feet of torque, a significant bump from the 550 horsepower and 567 pound-feet of torque in the Turbo.

The same engine can be found in the Panamera Sport Turismo and, using launch control, it can get from zero to 60 mph in just 2.9 seconds (3.0 seconds for the Panamera Turbo S Executive).That's half a second quicker than the previous Panamera Turbo. The car is speed limited to 196 mph on the track.

The Panamera GTS also gets a power upgrade. It now has 473 horsepower (up 20) and 457 pound-feet of torque. Additionally, its throttle calibration has been tuned to match a naturally aspirated engine more closely.

2021 Porsche Panamera

Photo courtesy of Porsche AG

A new plug-in hybrid option will be available. The Panamera 4S E-Hybrid pairs an electric motor with a twin-turbocharged 2.9-liter V6 to achieve 552 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque. Using launch control it can get off the line and to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds and has a top track speed of 185 mph.

Porsche has given all its Panamera E-Hybrid models a 27 percent larger hybrid battery capacity for 2021. The bump moves it u pto 17.9 kilowatt-hours from 14.1 kilowatt-hours. They also get recalibrated drive modes that are designed to maximize the performance and efficiency of the car.

Each Panamera gets the adjustable Porsche Active Suspension Management system, which features an updated calibration for its adaptive dampers that is designed to sharpen feedback.

The Panamera Turbo S also gets the Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control Sport roll-stabilization system, Porsche Torque Vectoring (PTV Plus), rear axle steering, and Porsche Ceramic Composite Brakes as standard. This equipment can all be ordered as options on other Panamera models. all of which can be optionally ordered on other Panamera models. The car's rotors are fitted with yellow or black calipers, depending on client specification.

2021 Porsche Panamera Porsche has installed a 12.3-inch infotainment touch screen in the Panamera.Photo courtesy of Porsche AG

The interior of the Panamera gets a freshly designed multifunction Sport steering wheel with shift paddles. The Panamera Turbo S and GTS get a new, Race-Tex-covered GT Sport steering wheel with paddle shifters wrapped in leather.

Panamera and Panamera 4S E-Hybrid models come standard with eight-way electrically adjustable comfort seats with driver memory package, while the Turbo S models are equipped with 14-way electrically adjustable comfort seats with memory. The luxurious Panamera GTS comes standard with 18-way electrically adjustable adaptive sport seats. Both the 14-way comfort seats and 18-way adaptive sport seats are optional on other Panamera models.

At the center of the dashboard is a 12.3-inch infotainment touch screen. The system includes navigation, real-time traffic information, and a Wi-Fi hot spot. The Panamera Turbo S has a 14-speaker, 710-watt Bose Surround Sound System. A 21-speaker, 1,455 watt Burmester 3D High-End Surround System with an active 400 watt subwoofer is available in all Panamera models.

All 2021 Panamera models come standard with lane keep assist and traffic sign recognition technology. Buyers can further enhance their model with a number of available safety technologies including Night Vision Assist, Lane Change Assist, Surround View, and Porsche InnoDrive with Adaptive Cruise Control. A head-up display is also available.

The 2021 Panamera models will be available to order starting early next year, and are expected to arrive at U.S. dealers in the course of Spring 2021. Pricing will be announced once order availability starts.

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Australia's first 911 has been reimagined by Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur with two new tribute models.

Photo courtesy of Porsche AG

The first Porsche 911 was brought to the continent in 1964 by Australian Porsche distributor at the time, Norman Hamilton. It was sold to farmer Ron Angas. That 911 is the inspiration for a pair of matching Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur 911 Carrera S models that were created jointly by Porsche Centre Melbourne and Porsche Centre Sydney South.

"The idea was to take the 1965 911 and reimagine that car and all its wonderful details for 2020," explains Dean Williams, New Vehicle Sales Manager, Porsche Centre Melbourne.

2002 Porsche 911 Australia The two models are inspired by the first 911 to make its way to the continent in the 1960s.Photo courtesy of Porsche AG

Porsche tells the story of the initial car's deliver:

"When Ron Angas put down 2,000 Australian pounds on a new six cylinder Porsche in 1964, the order form stated '901'. But by the time the sports car arrived on Angas's farm in the Barossa Valley, 100 km north of Adelaide, the badge bore the numbers 911, following Porsche's now-famous trademark dispute with Peugeot. The new owner didn't mind: it meant the distinctive '119' black and white number plate that had been worn by several Angas family cars over the years would neatly mirror the new addition's model name."

That 911 was loved and exercised often by its owner. It was routinely seen partaking in the Collingrove hillclimb that Angas had built on his property. After racking up 87,000 km on the odometer, Angas sold the 911 to his architect friend Roy Wilson in February 1969.

Stewart Kay, the car's current owner, first saw the classic when he interviewed Wilson for a university paper in the late 1980s. Porsche describes the moment he first laid eyes on it:

"Secreted in the shadows of Wilson's garage, Kay noticed it bore a stark similarity to a car he had read about in an English magazine. On display at the Porsche Museum, he recalled that the car had been cited as the 'oldest known 911'.

"When he checked the article later, he was surprised to discover that the Museum car's chassis number was 302 503: exactly 1,000 cars later than the one he had just seen. Calls to the factory via Porsche Cars Australia soon confirmed that the 911 in Wilson's garage was one of the first right hand drive examples ever built.

He pleaded with Wilson – initially without success – to buy the car, but it wasn't until 1992 that he received a phone call asking: "Do you still want it?". A price was negotiated immediately and the car – complete with original keys, original owners' manual, service books and more than 136,000 km on the clock – found itself its third delighted owner."

The two tribute models do not share the same mechanical components, instead relying on the aesthetic customization options of Porsche Exclusive Manufakturt to create the special edition models.

The 1965 911 was finished in Stone Grey but that color is no longer part of the Porsche lineup. Its modern equivalent is Crayon. In addition to that paint job, the two models feature offset 20- and 21-inch wheels in Carrera Exclusive Design with black calipers. Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur SportDesign side skirts, painted exterior mirrors and high-gloss trim strips finish the look.

Porsche 911 from 1965 reimagined in Sydney

Photo courtesy of Porsche AG

Challenging designers, the early model 911 was swathed in green leather, which contrasts with the car's maple yellow timber dashboard, which was a standard feature when the car was new. There was a matching wood-rimmed steering wheel and 'English' instrumentation.

The new versions of the 911 are finished with Agave Green Club leather with contrasting Crayon stitching and matching Agave Green seat belts. The inspiration car did not have the 14-way power-adjustable sport seats with memory that have made their way into the new models, complete with the Porsche crest embossed into the headrests.

Brushed aluminium door sill guards in dark silver are illuminated and personalised with '1965 Reimagined' text. Both of the type 992 cars have been fitted with an interior package in a Paldao Dark design.

Kay's 911 is usually housed at the museum at The Bend Motorsport Park in Tailem Bend, South Australia. Tt will go on show alongside its new descendants at Porsche Australia's two Exclusive Manufaktur partners: Porsche Centre Sydney South and Porsche Centre Melbourne.

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