Fans of Porsche models like the 911 are in mourning after its iconic designer, Ferdinand Alexander Porsche, died earlier this week at the age of 76.

The German-born F.A. Porsche, as he was referred to by his colleagues, joined the company when he was just 22, having already spent countless hours in the engineering and development offices of his grandfather, the man credited with the original design of the Volkswagen Beetle in the 1930s.

Four years later, in 1962, he took over as the head of the Porsche design studio, and achieved worldwide recognition when he unveiled the first Porsche 911 at the 1963 Frankfurt Motor Show, saying of the design process, “Right from the start the specification was that the car had to be instantly recognizable as a Porsche from its silhouette.”

F.A. Porsche also designed the Porsche 904 Carrera GTS, a sleek Formula One racing car. He later served as president of Porsche AG and is credited with helping to reshape it and get it through an economic turnaround in the 1990s.


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