Porsche’s New Monitor Mimics Daytona, Laguna Seca, and the Nürburgring


  • Porsche has constructed a brand new observe at its Expertise Heart in Atlanta, which can open to the general public on April 1.
  • The observe contains corners meant to emulate the well-known Corkscrew at Laguna Seca, Bus Cease at Daytona, and Karussell on the Nürburgring-Nordschleife.
  • We sampled the observe at a latest media occasion, together with different options comparable to a moist skidpad and an autocross course.

Seven thousand 5 hundred miles. That is about how far you’d’ve wanted to journey to drive the Corkscrew at Laguna Seca, scythe by means of the Bus Cease chicane at Daytona, and slingshot across the Karussell on the Nürburgring-Nordschleife—till now. On April 1, a brand new observe on the Porsche Expertise Heart in Atlanta that features re-creations of all three iconic corners will open to the general public, a part of a multimillion-dollar growth at Porsche’s North American headquarters.

west track at porsche experience center atlanta

Porsche

Since its launch in 2015, the Expertise Heart has hosted nearly 400,000 guests, in line with Porsche. The power had featured a dealing with circuit, a restaurant, a present store, and a small museum house displaying basic Porsches, but it surely now provides a brand new course designed by Hermann Tilke, who has been the mind behind a number of Components 1 observe layouts such because the Bahrain Worldwide Circuit. The 1.3-mile West Monitor will likely be used for 90-minute one-on-one classes in Porsche’s sports activities automobiles and will be mixed with the unique circuit or run by itself, which is how we skilled it throughout a media occasion forward of the official opening.

We drove the course in quite a lot of Porsches—together with a 911 GT3 and a Taycan—and likewise skilled it from the passenger seat of the 1073-hp 718 Cayman GT4 ePerformance prototype, which we first rode alongside in at Porsche’s Expertise Heart in Franciacorta, Italy, final 12 months. Whereas the brand new Atlanta circuit does not have a straight part fairly so long as in Italy—the place we noticed the ePerformance prime out round 150 mph—it feels extra dynamic because of its hilly topography.

west track at porsche experience center atlanta

Porsche

The Monitor Expertise

Exiting the pits, you climb by means of a sequence of fast esses earlier than dropping again down for a pointy 90-degree proper hander. You then ascend 30 toes to the Laguna Seca–like Corkscrew, which incorporates a stomach-churning 25-foot drop by means of the chicane. A twisty part on the again half of the observe emulates the well-known Tail of the Dragon highway within the Nice Smoky Mountains, earlier than you get to the bumpy and banked Carousel (Porsche opts to make use of the English spelling), which tries its hardest to unsettle the chassis.

Throughout the confines of the West Monitor are three different setups that can assist different driving classes. A skidpad, which Porsche calls a low-friction circle, with moist, polished concrete covers 196 toes in diameter and permits drivers to discover the bounds of grip and discover ways to handle understeer and oversteer. We spent our time on the skidpad holding a chronic drift in a 718 Cayman GT4 with a goofy grin plastered throughout our face.

west track at porsche experience center atlanta

Porsche

Climbing Ice Hill

There may be additionally the Ice Hill, which mimics an icy climb that one may encounter within the wintry months within the northern United States. Tackling its 8 p.c slope and watered, polished floor teaches drivers learn how to easily apply throttle, brakes, and steering enter in dicey situations. We sampled it in quite a lot of automobiles: a rear-wheel-drive Cayman required a fragile proper foot to make it up the hill, whereas an all-wheel-drive Macan allowed us to execute drifts whereas simply remaining in management.

Lastly, an autocross course with cones in an expansive paved space permits for quite a lot of classes, from training launches and heavy braking to specific steering in tight corners. We examined the launch management in a glorious-sounding 911 GT3 and within the hushed however face-melting Taycan Turbo S.

When mixed with all accessible observe surfaces—together with the unique circuit—the brand new dealing with course types a part of a 2.9-mile highway. The observe will likely be open to each Porsche homeowners and others, and the Expertise Heart sits only a few miles away from the busy Atlanta Worldwide Airport.

Headshot of Caleb Miller

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Caleb Miller started running a blog about automobiles at 13 years outdated, and he realized his dream of writing for a automobile journal after graduating from Carnegie Mellon College and becoming a member of the Automobile and Driver crew. He loves quirky and obscure autos, aiming to sooner or later personal one thing weird like a Nissan S-Cargo, and is an avid motorsports fan.

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