The legends of the 956 and 962 live on.
Porsche is undeniably one of the most iconic car manufacturers in the world, and its vehicles have had a massive impact on popular culture, world politics, and most importantly, the race track. From the legendary Porsche 911 all the way through to Le Mans racers such as the classic 956, Porsche has been making a name for itself in motorsport since it first started building cars, and now a lucky few will get the chance to drool over seven of Porsche's most iconic racing prototypes at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles, California. The museum has teamed up with event organizer Luftgekuhlt (the same team that brought you the RUF Porsche exhibit) to showcase some of the most influential 956s and 962s to have ever hit the track, and it's a feast for the eyes.
The exhibition named 'Prototype Giants' focusses around a select few 956 and 962 cars, most of which still regularly compete in vintage class racing, and features classics such as a Leyton House 962C built by Kremer and the Coca-Cola 962 piloted by Bob Akin and Hans Stuck. The story of the Porsche 956 starts with Porsche's desire to enter the 1982 FIA World Sportscar Championship's Group C. The 956 was the first racing car to feature an aluminum monocoque chassis and ground effect aerodynamics. This revolutionary design bagged Porsche all three podium positions at the 24 Hours of Le Mans that same year.
The 956 went on to set a 35-year old Nürburgring lap record which was only surpassed in 2018 by a modified Porsche 919 Hybrid. The Porsche 962 followed a few years later and was specifically designed to comply with updated IMSA GTP specifications. This car would go on to become one of the most successful race cars of all time, winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1986, 1987, and 1994, as well as the IMSA GT championship from 1985 to 1988. The exhibition runs until November 19, and general admission tickets are priced at $40, a bargain to get up close and personal with such precious metal.