Jonathan Gitlin:

The Porsche 911 is a testament to perseverance. Even back in 1963, it was clear that putting the engine behind a car’s rear axle entailed compromises over front- or even mid-engined cars—clear to everyone outside of Porsche’s Stuttgart base, that is. That was the year the company unveiled its 901 at the Frankfurt auto show. (The name was changed to “911” after Peugeot asserted that its trademark extended to any three-digit number with a 0 in the middle.) The first Porsche 911 went on sale in 1964, and the car has been a cornerstone of the marque ever since. During those 51 years, Porsche engineers have mitigated the problems associated with a rear-engined layout, developing the 911 into one of motoring’s greatest living legends.