Icons of Porsche returned in November 2022 for their second iteration at Dubai Design District. The much-anticipated event took guests on a trip that praised Porsche while spotlighting the region’s numerous passionate Porsche communities.
This year’s event drew an even greater crowd than the previous year. The 17,000 square metre facility housed an amazing combination of activities, including the country’s largest exhibit of historic Porsches, artwork installations by famous artists, prominent food and beverage sellers and thrilling musical performances from throughout the region.
After a large crowd attended this year’s edition, the 2022 Icons of Porsche event has confirmed itself as the Middle East’s finest automobile expo. Over the weekend, over 15,000 people attended the two-day event, which was more than double the number of attendees last year. This year’s festival was themed ‘Icons of Porsche, Safari Edition,’ coinciding with the thirst for off-road adventure among Middle Eastern fans and aficionados. The popular festival’s second edition was hosted on November 26 and 27, 2022, alongside the breathtaking skyline of downtown Dubai, at ‘The Slab’ in the Dubai Design District (D3) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
“Everyone involved in Icons of Porsche is overwhelmed by the increased number of visitors that attended this year’s festival,” said Dr. Manfred Bräunl, Chief Executive Officer of Porsche Middle East and Africa.
“In just two years Icons of Porsche has grown from nothing to become the largest car festival in the Middle East. This shows just how strong the Porsche community is in this region. It is fascinating to see the excitement amongst the large and diverse crowd in attendance. In true festival style, there are all kinds of topics on display for people to see and enjoy. I am especially pleased to see interest in Icons of Porsche growing not only across the entire region, but also around the world. We have had many tourists, journalists and Porsche car club members from Europe and other continents attend this year. This encourages us to keep growing the event even further. Icons of Porsche shows how strong the passion for Porsche is among people of all ages. This is why we have announced the 2023 date, so that everyone can set this weekend in their calendars a full 12 months in advance. The mix of classic cars, art and culture on display at Icons of Porsche seems to be a very good fit, not only for the Porsche brand, but also for this region. It was great not only to have so many fans and enthusiasts in attendance, but also many key people from our Porsche importers across the Middle East, Africa and India region. I must thank all of the staff involved in making this event such a success, and especially acknowledge our importers in Abu Dhabi and Dubai for their commitment to making this festival such a success.”
Porsche fans enjoyed a fantastic time and voyage through the German vehicle company’s rallying past at the third edition of Icons of Porsche, where automobiles, art, and culture came together. Mark Webber, Timo Bernhard, and six-time Le Mans 24-Hour winner Jacky Ickx, the racing legends were present at the event. Over a thousand automobiles were on show at the event, which drew visitors not just from the region, but from around the world.
It was great honor for GB Bajaj to meet Jacky Ickx – two-time winner of the Twelve Hours of Sebring in 1969 and 1972, a six-time winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, recorded eight Grand Prix wins in Formula One, a total of 37 major sports car victories, the 1979 Can-Am championship and victory in the 1983 Dakar Rally.
Porsche fans learned about their heritage through a presentation of some of their most rare historic models as well as renowned race vehicles. They also included an area dedicated to displaying futuristic automotive designs, as well as an intriguing collection of art works made by local and international artists. A special segment focused on the 911 model to commemorate 60 years of the phenomenon and the arrival of the Porsche Panamera.
Tryout some delicious burgers and milkshakes, ofcourse the fresh soft German sausages at one of the many wonderful food trucks.
“Following the overwhelming response to last year’s festival, we are truly excited to announce that Icons of Porsche is back,” said Dr Manfred Bräunl, Chief Executive Officer of Porsche Middle East and Africa FZE. “Icons of Porsche is a celebration of Porsche’s amazing heritage. Last year’s event was one of the most impressive car displays this region has ever seen, with over 200 classic Porsche sportscars present.”
“The safari theme for this year’s event will deliver a lot of exciting moments and engaging experiences. Attendees can expect to see some famous Porsche vehicles from throughout our rich history, with pedigree and success off-road as well as on the race track. We are planning to deliver a calendar event that is not to be missed. It will be the ultimate platform to experience classic car nostalgia in connection with art, culture and the community.”
The 911 Dakar, 911 GT3 RS, and 911 Sport Classic had their regional debuts during the festival. Mark Webber, Timo Bernhard, and six-time Le Mans 24 Hour champion Jacky Ickx were among those in attendance. Fans were allowed to ride in the newest Cayenne on a purpose-built off-road course within the festival grounds. As part of the region’s commemoration of 20 Years of Cayenne, a recently repaired first-generation Cayenne was also on exhibit.
Mr JWW is a global automotive influencer who hosted the 2022 Icons of Porsche festival in Dubai.
It was surprising but fantastic to meet Dmitrij Juvko, or Dima, a passionate Porsche enthusiast and his brother, as both of them gifted me their OBS PORSCHE special limited edition model car for my room/office.
The family-friendly event included several milestone celebrations. This included 20 years of Porsche Cayenne, the brand’s first SUV model, 50 years of Porsche Design, and a gathering place for Porsche Clubs from throughout the area as they celebrated an extraordinary ’70 Years of Porsche Clubs’.
New features aimed at attracting a larger audience included the addition of real-life and virtual driving experiences. An Esports arena allowed participants to pit their racing simulator abilities in a Porsche against other competitors, while an off-road track provided an exciting passenger ride experience in Porsche Cayenne models.
Icons of Porsche is a very unique event that targeted a wide spectrum of people, from historic vehicle owners to automotive aficionados and experience seekers. It offered something for everyone and hosted regional and worldwide visitors and performers. It demonstrated that Porsche stands for more than just excellent sports vehicles; it also stands for passion, inspiration, and aspirations.
This year, four legendary Porsche Museum sportscars travelled from Stuttgart to Dubai for Icons of Porsche: the 1986 Porsche 959 Paris-Dakar, the 1981 Porsche 911 C 5 (SC) San Remo, the 1981 Porsche 924 GTS Rallye, and the 1978 Porsche 911 SC Safari.
Famed automobile photographer René Staud had his The René Staud Gallery at the Icons of Porsche 2022 and had selected images from 50 years of car photography – “open air” for a change.
René Staud had his pop up studio and captured the défilé of the most extraordinary models – at a temperature of forty degrees in the shade, and around the clock.
“I am an image creator – for me, images are created in my mind and through independent, handcrafted arrangements.”
René Staud is a renowned automobile photographer who has captured the essence of Porsche’s iconic designs for decades. His work on the Porsche Icons 2022 project was especially noteworthy, as he expertly captured the sleek curves and powerful engines of Porsche’s most iconic models. Staud’s photographs have been featured in numerous books, showcasing his artistry and his deep appreciation for Porsche’s legacy as one of the world’s most coveted luxury car brands.”
The collection of automobiles from the region on display was equally spectacular. Many automobiles from local Middle Eastern owners were on show across the five precincts of the festival. Furthermore, several automobiles from Porsche owners, many of whom arrived in convoys coordinated by Porsche clubs, were parked in the event area.
You may even pick up some great Porsche goods – caps, tshirts, jackets, model porches, amazing collectibles.
The 2023 edition of the Icons of Porsche festival, which will celebrate 75 years of Porsche Sportscars, is to be held on 25-26 November 2023.