Only the Air-cooled Need Apply
Photography by Afshin Behnia
While organizing and promoting Luftgekühlt II, Porsche factory driver Patrick Long and enthusiast Howie Idelson insisted that that the event would happen “come rain or shine.” Fortunately, the ever-compliant Southern California weather cooperated just long enough for the event to be a success before the heavens opened and the rains drenched Culver City this past Sunday. And thank those heavens, too, because being at Luftgekühlt (German for “air-cooled” and pronounced “louft-guh-kewlt”) was like being a kid in a candy story–that is, if candy store is filled with Porsches.
The brainchild of Long and Idelson, this curated and invitation-only event is a gathering of both street and race cars from Zuffenhausen (all of them air-cooled, of course), from the Pre-A 356 through the 993. In contrast to last year’s inaugural event at Deus Ex Machina in nearby Venice, where 40 air-cooled Porsches somehow found a berth in the cramped premises, this year’s event took place at the expansive Los Angeles home of the Bandito Brothers, a media company and collective of fellow Petrolisti.
Most of the attending cars arrived with their owners behind the wheel, but a few rolled in aboard trailers. Regardless of how the cars came to be at the event, though, Luftgekühlt II did not lack for rare Porsches. Highlights included an uber-rare 964 3.8 RS; street and race-prepped 904s and 906s; a 1971 East African Safari 911; a 959, a 964 Carrera 4 RS Lightweight; the Petersen Automotive Museum’s early 356 Continental Cabriolet; and a Le Mans-winning Kremer 935 driven to the event by good friend of Petrolicious, Bruce Meyer. Also in attendance was a legion of pristine examples of Porsche’s finest, as well as more, shall we say, “weathered” specimens and “outlaw” types.
The event was also the place to share the air with such noted Porsche personalities as Jeff Zwart, Magnus Walker, Patrick Dempsey, Spike Feresten, Rod Emory, and many others, some of whom had their own cars on display. And while this assembly of eye-candy may have outgrown Deus Ex Machina’s facilities, that didn’t stop their team from being on site, enthusiastically offering refreshments, music, and keepsakes for attendees, who were also treated to a live demonstration of how the event poster was silkscreened.
This edition of Luftgekühlt was once again free for spectators, but we would have gladly paid the price of admission. Long and Idelson deserve a round of applause for organizing this undertaking, and Petrolicious is looking forward to see what they have up their sleeves for Luftgekühlt III.