November 28, 2014

Porsche acquires Nardo Test Track as its new playground

Porsche Nardo Test Track

Porsche Nardo Test Track (map from Google Earth)

The enormous Nardo Test Track near Lecce, Italy, has been acquired by Porsche as a new testing ground.

Top Gear viewers will probably remember the opening episode if the last series of Top Gear (series 18) with the Lamborghini, McLaren and Noble in Italy or, more specifically, in the Lecce region of Italy which nestles in the warmth of Italy’s heel.

The Lecce region also houses the Nardo Test Track which is where the boys took their supercars to hammer round the slightly bumpy outer oval seeking top speed. That bumpy experience may be a lot smoother next time Nardo opens its doors to the Top Gear trio as Porsche has just gobbled it up as its new playground.

A huge facility covering almost 1800 acres. the Nardo track actually sits about 15 miles north of Nardo and has a 7.8 mile oval track, a 4 mile handling track, unmade tracks, a noise track, special surface track and, thanks to the climate, can be operated 24hrs a day, seven days a week.

Porsche seem suitably chuffed with their acquisition. Porsche boss Matthias Müller said:

The Nardo proving ground with its high-speed and vehicle handling circuit ideally complements our facilities in Weissach. With the systematic development of the company in Nardò as part of Strategy 2018, Porsche is proving to be a reliable employer and business partner in Apulia as well.

Which probably lost something in translation. And Porsche Engineering boss, Malte Radmann, commented:

With its rich array of facilities, from dynamic surfaces to acoustic and off-road sections coupled with the numerous workshops, our clients can continue to make extensive use of Nardò for their vehicle trials in the future as well.

Obviously sharing VW’s huge test track at Ehra-Lessien with it’s 5.6 mile straight just wasn’t enough for Porsche. But now they have their very own Nardo Track to play with – perfect for fettling the new Porsche 918 Spyder

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