2022 Porsche 911 Carrera S Panamerica Special celebrates 1952 again

Over the summer, Porsche North America unwrapped its celebration of the 1952 356 America Edition with a 2022 Porsche 911 GTS Cabriolet America Edition. When we got up close to the car at the Sports Car Together Fest last month, we learned how much work the design teams put into making its specials special. The year 1952 included a bigger and more successful triumph than the 356 America Edition: Class victory in the 1952 La Carrera Panamericana, a 3,000-kilometer road race through Mexico that was like the Baja for passenger cars. This was the event’s third year, and automakers were already eyeing it as a torture test for race cars. Mercedes-Benz finished 1-2 in 1952 with a pair of 300 SLs, and would pick half of the race name for its Panamericana grille. Porsche’s first tilt at the race ended with eighth overall and that class win, plus picking the other half of the race name for a range of engines in the 1960s then applying it to the 911 road cars.

Porsche Mexico and Porsche Latin America are celebrating the car and the victory with a 911 Carrera S Panamericana Special. In contrast to the 100 examples the U.S. and Canada will get of the America Edition, our neighbors to the south have commissioned Porsche Manufaktur to product one Panamericana Special. The region did the same in 2021 with a gulf-livered 911 Turbo S that commemorated Mexican racing driver Pedro Rodriguez. The Rodriguez car came together with the help of the late driver’s family. This time, designers used footage from the 1952 race and the recollections of the Porsche team’s co-pilot for the #10 car and sole mechanic at the race, Herbert Linge. 

The convertible itself features Gentian Blue paint offset by white roundels with the number 11, same as the 356 S Cabriolet driven by Prince Fürst von Metternich and diplomat Baron Manuel De Teffé that crossed the line (the #10 Porsche didn’t finish). The top is Graffiti Gray, a color that can’t normally be had on the 911. Said Grant Larson, Porsche’s head of special projects, “Graffiti gray is not available for the roof of the 911, so we had to use the canvas of the 718 Spyder, which makes this custom model from the Sonderwunsch special order division the only 911 in the world with that roof color.” The engine cover’s been painted white, the vertical third brake lights darkened to look more like an “11.”  The 20- and 21-inch 911 Turbo wheels are color-matched to the Gentian Blue body, with gray center caps, hiding black brake calipers instead of the usual red.

The interior lashes up Crayon gray leather throughout, the seat headrests embroidered with “La Carrera Panamericana” and vintage helmets. The race name also shows up on the dash plaque, the door sills, the laser-etched key case, and the puddle lights.

As with the Rodriguez car, this one will be auctioned next year, part of the proceeds going to charity. Vintage racing enthusiasts who want to get an insider’s look at the race or watch Linge recall his experience, head to the Porsche Motorsports Latin America site.

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