Porsche Experience Center re-opens; same thrills, new COVID guidelines

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The Porsche Experience Center in Atlanta, shown in 2018. - Porsche/Atlanta Journal-Constitution/TNS

ATLANTA — The pandemic forced many metro Atlanta attractions to temporarily close their doors, causing some residents to go a little stir crazy while seeking ways to combat cabin fever.

One facility has re-opened, however, and is sure to provide thrills for any car enthusiast — the Porsche Experience Center.

The center, which allows guests to experience driving some of the best sports cars in the world while under the close supervision of professional driving instructors, has been revamped to ensure social distancing and other COVID-19 precautions.

The highlight of the Porsche Experience Center, located near Hartsfield Jackson International Airport, is its 1.6-mile track that consists of six different driving modules.

Some are designed to simulate everyday driving on Atlanta roads. Others let you experience the rush of driving a Porsche, especially the Taycan Turbo S, the company’s first electric production vehicle.

During a recent visit to the center, an AJC editor and photographer were able to experience the Taycan under the watchful eye of instructor Tyler Fling.

Fling helped the editor navigate through several of the course’s modules. One is called the Kick Plate module. This module tests vehicle control skills when encountering a skid or spin. During this module a hydraulically actuated metal plate is placed before a wet epoxy surface. As a vehicle travels over the plate at a safe rate of speed, sensors move the plate randomly left or right to mimic sliding that might occur during inclement weather conditions. Drivers must maneuver the car to keep it traveling in a straight line.

Another module is the Dynamics area. This one challenges a driver’s speed, agility and lane-change performance on a large asphalt pad designed to simulate unique maneuvers one might encounter during daily driving.

All the center’s activities are done with safety in mind. Customers must submit to a temperature check and wear masks.

Porsche’s professional drivers, who used to be seated in the passenger seat as you drove, now travel in an advance car and radio instructions to you.

Social distancing is strictly enforced, and the cars are disinfected after each use.

Unfortunately, the facility’s Restaurant 356 is temporarily closed but guests can eat at the Carrera Cafe and on the patio overlooking the track. The Porsche Driving Simulator Lab, which allows guests to virtually drive some world’s best tracks, is also open.

The Porsche Experience Center

Cost for a 90-minute session with the new Taycan:

—Taycan Turbo S ($650)

—Taycan Turbo ($600)

—Taycan Turbo vs. 911 Turbo ($825)

—Taycan Turbo vs. Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid ($750)

To book a slot at the Porsche Experience Center, visit [https://www\.porschedriving\.com/atlanta/driving](

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©2020 The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (Atlanta, Ga.)