In the history of the German carmaker Porsche, one of the most important factors has been its Porsche factory collection in Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen.
Seven decades ago, the first Porsche vehicle was collected from the factory in Zuffenhausen by its owner Dr. Ottomar Domnick. On May 26, 1950, when Domnick collected his car, it gave birth to a tradition of sorts. 70 years later, even today, customers choose to pick up their new car directly from the automaker’s plant.
Celebrating the anniversary year, the company shares details of the first car that was sold straight from the plant. Domnick, who was a psychiatrist, took ownership of his sports car Porsche 356 in Fish Silver with the commission number 5001, from the field in front of Plant 1.
When he collected his Porsche, the doctor was 43-year-old, incidentally, the same age as Florian Boehme, who received his first electric sports car in Zuffenhausen last February. Before the Porsche 356 handover to Domnick, who was also the first Porsche customer in Germany, took the passenger seat in his car next to Herbert Linge, the legendary racer. Linge had invited the 43-year-old for a final test drive.
Herbert Linge started his training at Porsche KG in April 1943 and was one of the first mechanics to be employed, after Porsche returned to the area of Stuttgart from Gmünd in Austria at the end of 1949.
“I was 14 when I started work at the first Porsche training workshop. In those days, we were six mechanics and two technical draftsmen. Ferdinand Porsche often walked past our workshop with important guests in tow. He would always stop to say hello while keeping his guests waiting for a short time. That’s something I’ll never forget,” Herbert Linge was quoted in a press statement by Porche.
“When Ottomar Domnick collected his Porsche 356, he really celebrated the occasion. But, he had been coming to the factory every day to see how far on we were with the work. Even Ferry Porsche briefly dropped in when the doctor was presented with his sports car,” added the racer.
The Domnick Foundation, which manages his estate today, still has the original order form from Ottomar Domnick with the commission number 5001. The order was processed by the Volkswagen Hahn dealership, as there was no Porsche sales network in Germany back then.
So, on the order form, Volkswagen had been crossed out by hand and replaced with Porsche-Sport. To this day, Domnick’s Porsche 356 represents the beginning of Porsche sales in Germany, and it also directly stands for the start of personal factory collections in Zuffenhausen.
Even today, the factory collection at Porsche’s headquarters is a special experience for the customers. “The most exciting aspect of this first encounter is that customers have never actually seen the car before. They configure their car of choice in the Porsche Centre or together with a consultant from the Porsche Exclusive Manufacture department and only see the colour combinations on photos or tiles. So when they collect their personalised Porsche, they are seeing it for the very first time. This is a very special moment at the beginning of the handover,” said Tobias Donnevert, Head of Factory Collection and Sales Operations Personalisation in the press release.
Around 20 customers every day come to collect their new cars at the plant in Zuffenhausen and are welcomed by Donnevert and his team. In 2019, a total of 2,500 Porsche owners opted for collection directly from the factory, in addition to almost 3,000 who visited Porsche’s second plant in Leipzig.
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Prior to collecting their cars, the customers are invited to take a tour of the factory and the Porsche Museum. At Porsche in Leipzig, customers are given an insight into the production of the Macan and Panamera models. They also have the option to take a test run on the plant’s own FIA-certified race track.