This is another cool barn find story! Porsche’s first car has been unearthed after spending some time out of the limelight, in a barn…since around 1902. That said, it is not exactly the brand’s first production car, but rather, the first one built by founder Ferdinand Porsche himself that remains untouched.
Ferdinand created the car, officially named the Egger-Lohner C.2 Phaeton in 1898. The strapping 23-year-old then emblazoned ‘P1’ all over it. Don’t worry–this was literally eons before McLaren released their P1. Ferg’s P1 graced the bustling streets of 1898 Vienna as one of the first registered motor vehicles, inspiring a production run shortly after.
The powertrain for the first Porsche was electric, tipping the scales at a scant 286 pounds and producing 3-5 horses…depending on the mode. That means it was capable of reaching speeds of up to 22 blistering miles per hour…which was likely a bit rough on the rugged roadways back then! All of that power was reined in with a 12-speed manual controller.
The range of the old Porsche was equally impressive at around 50 miles. It was ahead of its time by packing on coachbuilder Lohner’s alternating vehicle body. That touch made the P1 suitable for driving year-round, though vehicles were still not considered a ‘practical’ means of daily commuting.
Then came the 1899 International Motor Show in Berlin. The exciting race and events catapulted Ferdinand Porsche and his P1 into the headlines and the rest is history. The production car was called the Lohner-Porsche, and the barn find is the prototype of it! It is a very cool find and can be viewed at the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart for a limited time.