Ferdinand Alexander Porsche dies at age 76.
Ferdinand Alexander Porsche was born in Stuttgart on 11 December 1935, the oldest son of Dorothea and Ferry Porsche. Even his childhood was shaped by cars, and he spent much of his time in the engineering offices and development workshops of his grandfather Ferdinand Porsche. In 1943 the family accompanied the Porsche companyâ€™s move to Austria, where he went to school in Zell am See. After returning to Stuttgart in 1950, he attended the private Waldorf school. After leaving school, he enrolled at the prestigious Ulm School of Design.
In 1958, F.A. Porsche, as he was known by his colleagues, joined the engineering office of what was then Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche KG. He soon proved his great talent for design by sculpting the first model of a successor to the 356 model line out of plasticine. In 1962 he took over
In the course of the conversion of Porsche KG into a joint-stock corporation in 1971/72, Ferdinand Alexander Porsche, along with all the other family members, stood down from the companyâ€™s front-line business operations. In 1972 he founded the â€œPorsche Design Studioâ€? in Stuttgart, the head office of which was relocated to Zell am See in Austria in 1974.
In the decades that followed, he designed numerous classic gentlemenâ€™s accessories such as watches, spectacles and writing implements that achieved global recognition under the â€œPorsche Designâ€? brand. In parallel, with his team, he designed a plethora of industrial products, household appliances and consumer durables for internationally renowned clients under the brand â€œDesign by F.A. Porscheâ€?.
A strong and clear design concept typifies all product designs created in his design studio to date. The credo of his design work was: â€œDesign must be functional and functionality has to be translated visually into aesthetics, without gags that have to be explained first.â€? F.A. Porsche: â€œA coherently designed product requires no adornment; it should be enhanced by its form alone.â€? The designâ€™s appearance should be readily comprehensible and not detract from the product and its function. His conviction was: â€œGood design should be honest.â€?
Ferdinand Alexander Porsche received numerous honours and awards both for his work as a designer as well as for individual designs. For example, in 1968 the â€œComit?© Internationale de Promotion et de Prestigeâ€? honoured him for the outstanding aesthetic design of the Porsche 911 while the Industrial Forum Design Hannover (iF) voted him â€œPrizewinner of the Yearâ€? in 1992. In 1999, the President of Austria bestowed on him the title of Professor.
Ferdinand Alexander Porsche retained a close lifelong association with Porsche AG as a partner and member of the Supervisory Board. For example, even after stepping down from front-line business operations, he contributed to the design of Porscheâ€™s sports cars over many decades and repeatedly steered the company in the right direction.
This was especially the case for the difficult period Porsche experienced at the beginning of the 1990s. From 1990 to 1993, F.A. Porsche served as President of the companyâ€™s Supervisory Board, thus playing a major role in Porsche A.Gâ€™s economic turnaround. In 2005, he stood down from his Supervisory Board role in favour of his son Oliver and assumed the mantle of Honorary President of the Supervisory Board.
Ferdinand Alexander Porsche will be buried in the family grave at Sch?¼ttgut in Zell am See, attended by his immediate family. An official funeral service will be held in Stuttgart at a later date.
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