Porsche's rendering of its new American headquartersEnlarge Photo
Porsche Cars North America has called Atlanta, Georgia, home since 1998, and it’s about to make that arrangement even more permanent. The German sports car manufacturer has just announced the groundbreaking on a 26.4 acre site adjacent to Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.
Expected to be completed in the second half of 2014, the new facility will house most of Porsche’s North American operations, employing some 400 workers. The facility will also feature a technical service and training center, a restoration center, a conference center, a museum and a “customer experience center” that includes a 1.6-mile test track.
As Automotive News
(subscription required) explains, the test track will also be available to Porsche
dealerships, who will be able to seduce undecided customers with track time in the Porsche model of their choosing. Dealership-sponsored group events are also an option, fostering loyalty between Porsche retailers and their customers.
A similar facility (with an even larger test track) is under construction on the West Coast
, located within reasonable driving distance of Los Angeles International Airport. As with the Atlanta center, Porsche’s Los Angeles facility will be a destination location, with something of interest for Porsche fans of all ages. It will also serve as the home of Porsche Motorsport North America
The new Atlanta location makes perfect sense, as an estimated 80-percent of the U.S. population lives within a two-hour flight to Atlanta. Porsche is the first tenant of a complex known as “Aerotropolis Atlanta,” and its facility is being built on the site of a former Ford manufacturing plan
t, shuttered in 2006.
When the $100 million facility opens its doors, Porsche anticipates some 20,000 visitors annually, with as much as 15-percent of those visits (3,000 visitors) arranged by Porsche dealerships.