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Porsche Experience Center Franciacorta, the value of driving on the circuit

Amidst the wineries and grapevines, on 60 hectares, the new amusement park for sportscar fans

Franciacorta will no longer be just a synonym for wineries and grape varietals. With the inauguration of the Porsche Experience Center Franciacorta, the hills between Brescia and the southern tip of Lake Iseo is all set to become a new destination for automobile fans. The oncoming fall, and the next Porsche Festival 2021 (scheduled for October 2nd and 3rd) offer the first opportunities to make reservations for new experiences, after the official opening held on September 11th. A symbolic day for Porsche and for all the fans of the Brand (11 September: 9 like September and 11, i.e. 911).

Pantografo Magazine was given a preview of the complex which extends over an area of 60 hectares, where the passion for the House of Zuffenhausen is expressed in a series of spaces designed to engage every type of public, from clients to fans, from companies to families, offering each one of them the pleasure of experiencing the Porsche world as a protagonist.

«We are truly proud to have a Porsche Experience Center in our country, the eighth following those in Leipzig, Silverstone, Atlanta, Le Mans, Los Angeles, Shanghai, Hockenheim. The ninth will be inaugurated in Tokyo in October».

Pietro Innocenti, CEO of Porsche Italia

«There are already many circuits in Italy, but the PEC Franciacorta – says Innocenti – is a radically different structure because is it conceived to be the maximum expression of our Brand’s values, and offer a unique and engaging experience. It will be the highest expression of the Porsche world in a country such as Italy, where passion and the love for motors meets culture and beauty in a unique natural setting. It is an ideal place for fun, excitement and passion to be experienced live, in a stimulating environment with many different attractions».

Where and how. The facility is located in the town of Castrezzato (Brescia), a short distance from Lake Iseo, in a location central to the three airports of Milan, Bergamo and Verona, with excellent morphological characteristics, soft hills cultivated with valuable varietals that make the Franciacorta wine production and brand an excellence appreciated around the world. «The location, explained the CEO of Porsche Italia, was chosen considering that at least 70% of our Porsche clients live two hours away from here by car».

The facility. It has two main areas: the Customer Centre and the Paddock. The former, hosted in a futuristic building designed by the Milanese studio GBPA Architects – the design studio of architects Antonio Gioli and Federica De Leva, who were commissioned to rethink the spaces and the buildings outside the track (paddock, landscape, building) – is distinguished by an architecture of arches, made with laminated wood beams recovered from the earlier structure. It is the gateway to all the experiences designed for clients and fans. From here the visitors plunge into the multifaceted world of Porsche. It extends over an area of 5600 square metres, and consists in a central agorà connected to the different services: briefing rooms for the theory sessions, a showroom to configure the cars where customers can request delivery of the Porsche they ordered through the dealer, an elegant panoramic restaurant cantilevered over the racing track, a shop, a children’s area, a bar and a large panoramic terrace to enjoy the show on the circuit. There is also a Business Center that seats up to 140 and a Board Room for business meetings (both may be reserved upon request, to satisfy the demands of companies who wish to organize their events at the PEC Franciacorta).

The Paddock, on the other hand, features a pit building with 29 garages. It is the area where the major automobile events will be held, starting with the single-brand championship Porsche Carrera Cup Italia. The designers working on the plan of the tracks include Dromo srl, an engineering company specialized in racetrack design, founded by Jarno Zaffelli. The heart of the facility, the circuit, includes three different exercise zones. The highly technical 2.5 km main circuit unfurls in a sequence of chicanes and curves that vary in radius, perfect for fine-tuning driving skills. The safe driving area includes a low-friction track to practice drifting, and oversteering, an irrigated ring made of polished concrete, perfect to refine the technique for over and understeering and a large section in which to test the braking-system efficiency and the car’s stability during emergency maneuvers. There is also an Off-Road course with ramps, twists and unpaved road, to highlight the off-road performance of the Cayenne and Macan SUVs.

Not just circuits. There is also space for experimenting with alternative driving modes. The new facility features a Simulation Lab dedicated to virtual reality and E-sports, with eight latest-generation simulators, and an electric Go-Kart track with 3 power mappings, the only one of the eight Porsche Experience Centres in the world today. By the end of the year the new Porsche Italia Training Centre, dedicated to training the network of dealers, will be completed.


Cover: the new Porsche Experience Center Franciacorta. Ph. ©Claudio Lavenia/Getty Images for Porsche Italia

Translated by: Olga Barmine 


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