Porsche and Mercedes-Benz, the ostentatious charm of Stuttgart
Text: Jorge García Palomo
In one of the least stressful cities in the world, automobile lovers can experience considerable excitement. Why the apparent paradox? According to a recent study by the Zipjet firm, this is the scene of a real temple of the 20th century’s most powerful industry. Yes, in Stuttgart there are two imposing museums for two leading motor brands: Porsche and Mercedes-Benz. People who like cars should be organizing their visit right away.
This capital of the federated state of Baden-Württemberg –located in the southeast and one of the country’s 16 states– has an exceptional offer for getting to better know the history of a mechanical revolution, constant research, optimum designs, the frenzy of speed and communication by land, sea and air. In this case it’s the unstoppable search for technical prowess and the greatest comfort when travelling on the road. So let’s take it one step at a time.
The first stop on our GPS: Mercedesstraße number 100, where the Mercedes-Benz exhibit is located. In 1886, Gottlieb Daimler and Carl Benz presented one of those inventions that would disrupt the future of humanity: the automobile. In this colossal exhibition site there are 160 impressive vehicles and more than 1,500 articles housed in some 16,500 square metres on different levels. Touring cars, racers, lorries, prototypes, engines… Technology was always allied with the future, and here is the perfect place to confirm this and rediscover –we won’t ruin the visit for you– unique and extraordinary models. Open every day except Monday, the Mercedes-Benz Museum also hosts special events such as the recent “50 Years of AMG” show. Doubtless an emblematic destination for pilgrims to Stuttgart.
You already know what else there is: to recall an advertising slogan from the 1980s, “there are cars and then there are Porsches.” The prestigious Porsche brand has another special place in the city, at number 1 Porschplatz: a metal and glass building designed by the Meissl studio that creates an almost hypnotic fascination. The exhibition area occupies some 5,600 square metres and offers 80 sections, including everything from antique vehicles to real vanguard creations. Open from Tuesday to Sunday, it shows off such classic cars as the 917, the 911 and the Beetle. There are also pieces from other periods, curiosities, and an explanation of how they go about building a car. Sorry, make that a Porsche.
Want to enjoy automotive innovation, the power of this industry or sporting excellence? Then step on the gas: Stuttgart won’t disappoint you.