Sonne Porsche
Newsletter January 2004

Happy New Year!

By John Arafiles
PCA-Hawai‘i President

Aloha Kakou me ka Hauoli Makahiki Hou! I hope you all had a safe and joyous Christmas holiday.

It is a privilege and honor to serve as your President of the PCA-Hawai‘i ohana for 2004 and I look forward to making the year as enjoyable and successful as possible. I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself to those of you who may be new to the club and may not know me from years past.

I was born in Wailuku, Maui and raised in Honolulu. After graduation from high school, I continued my education in San Jose, CA, where I lived for 40 years. I worked in Silicon Valley for several high tech companies and served in the following capacities: Corporate Data Center Manager at Dysan Corp., Manager of Computer Operations at Memorex Corp., Manager of a Software Project Management Dept. at Amdahl Corp., Project Manager at Visa International, Software Engineer at Amdahl Corp., Systems Programmer Corp. at Fairchild Semiconductor and Memorex Corp., Supervisor of Computer Operations at Control Data Corp., and Computer Operator at Lockheed Missiles and Space Corp. I retired in 1996, returned to Hawaii in 2000, and joined the Porsche club.

I purchased my first Porsche, a 1978 928, in 1982 and am currently the proud owner of my fourth Porsche, a shinny new Seal Gray 2004 Carrera 4S Cabriolet. I look forward to serving as your President in 2004 and, as mentioned above, to making the year as enjoyable and successful as possible. But in order to be successful, we need your kokua and participation. Any thoughts or suggestions you may have to help or improve our events will be appreciated. I also look forward to the challenges and opportunities that the new year brings and hope that you will join me and the other PCA-Hawai‘i officers in making 2004 a year to remember, beginning with the “Sweetheart Run” on Sunday, Feb. 15.

A special thanks to Ed Yuen, Ambro Ilagan, Richard Lau and the other 2003 officers for a great year, and especially for a well organized and enjoyable Christmas party.

The Post PCA TREFFEN Experience
By John Arafiles

AMAZING and INCREDIBLE are the best words I can think of that best describes the PCA Post Treffen experience. What an “incredible” Porsche adventure that included traveling through the beautiful Bavarian countryside, a visit to the birthplace of the first Porsche in Gmund, Austria, picturesque winding Alpine mountain routes, “incredible” stays at a couple of ageless Castles, including the Porsche owned castle in Zell am See, Austria and of course “amazing” drives on the German Autobahn.

The Fantasy Come True!

How many Porschephiles have fantasized about cruising the German Autobahn in a Porsche at “incredible” speeds? Well I have, and my fantasy finally came true on the Post Treffen trip. Cruising on the Autobahn at 120-130 mph speeds became ordinary, with a top speed of 165 mph achieved. I also totally enjoyed the additional horsepower of the newer Porsche 996s (320 vs. 300 HP) which I tested at every opportunity and was evident by consistently being the first driver to run out of gas.

The Post Treffen Trip

The optional three-day Post Treffen trip began immediately after the regular Treffen trip was completed on Sunday, October 12, 2003. Four couples participated from the original PCA Treffen tour.

We were transported to the Porsche AG facility at Ludwigsburg, Germany where we picked up “our” brand new Carreras, which were equipped with almost every option you could think of, including the GPS Navigational system, BoseŽ Sound System, On-Board Computer, PSM, ParkAssist and the super sounding Sports Exhaust System.

Joni and I had a Polar Silver colored C4 Cabriolet, Jane and Mike (Washington Stat) a Meridian C4 coupe, Lou and Jerry (Illinois), a Dark Teal Targa, and Su and Cam (Nevada) of course had their own easy to spot bright Speed Yellow Targa.

Two way Walkie-Talkies were distributed to each vehicle so we could communicate with each other and locate anyone that had gone astray.

Porsche Travel Club Guide

The Post Treffen trip was conducted by the Porsche Travel Club. Our Tour Guide was Harrald Becker who is also a Porsche driving instructor and previously led motorcycle tours for BMW. Harald described the tour and explained the driving etiquette for the tour. Initially he said that no passing of other cars in the “convoy” or caravan was allowed, but relented when questioned and said as long as we didn’t pass him it would be alright.
To our surprise Harrald‘s ride was a brand new Cayenne S, which I questioned if it was enough of a vehicle to lead four voracious and eager Porsche pilots. My doubts were eliminated once we got underway. On the Autobahn and through the winding mountains it was readily apparent that Harald’s possessed excellent driving skill, but I was thoroughly impressed with the Cayenne S handling abilities.

Top Down and Roaring to Go

Our C4 Cab was the last in line and even though the temperature was in the 40’s (Fahrenheit) I asked Joni if it was okay to put the top down, she said, “Go for it!, and down came the top for the duration of our trip. The next thing I did was to get some help to reset the digital speedometer from KPH to MPH and the thermometer on the On-Board Computer from Celsius to Fahrenheit.

Day 1

As we left the Porsche facility at Ludwigsburg, our Carrera C4 was the last one to leave and I was a little concerned about whether we could keep up with everyone or would we get lost and left behind. My concerns vanished once we began to traverse the Autobahn. The “convoy” got strung out as traffic increased and not wanting to get lost, I rapidly repositioned ourselves immediately behind Harald and was promptly followed by Mike. It became obvious that Mike and I were faster than the others in our tour. After that I led the other Porsches for most of the tour and was constantly trying to push the leading Cayenne.

We were cruised the Autobahn at speeds not possible in Hawaii, 120 -130 mph and I was eager to see what the Carrera C4 could do on the Autobahn. I fell back and let our Travel Guide, Harald, get well ahead of us, then promptly “put the petal to the metal”. The Porsche swiftly accelerated to speeds I had never driven before. The digital speedometer briskly displayed 140 mph, then 150 and finally 160 mph. I remember trying to hold at 160 mph, but I had to take by eyes off the gauges in order to negotiate the traffic. Joni recalls observing the digital speedometer top off at 165 mph.

We concluded our first day with our arrival at the Arabella Sheraton Hotel Schloss Fuschi, located on Lake Fuschi which is surrounded by the beautiful Daschstein Mountains. A champagne reception was followed by a delicious gourmet dinner at the historic castle hotel.

Day 2

The highlight of the second day was an exciting drive through one of the most beautiful Alpine mountain routes, the GroBglockner Hochalpenstrasse. Here the temperature on the winding mountain roads dipped to a freezing 31 degrees Fahrenheit, but being true cabriolet lovers, we continued on with the Porsche still topless. The side windows were up and the interior car heater was set to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Needless to say it was frosty, but thanks to the heated seats and interior, not unbearable. Kudos to my wife Joni for enduring the freezing temperatures without a single complaint.

Additional highlights included a fascinating visit to the Porsche Museum of Helmut Pfeifhofer, which is the birthplace of the first Porsche, the original Porsche office of Mr. Ferdinand Porsche in Gmund, Austria, and a wonderful lunch served at the Alte Burg restaurant (another old castle). The day culminated with another outstanding epicurean dinner prepared by a ”world class chef” and an overnight stay at the Porsche owned castle, Hotel Schloss Prielau in Zell am See, Austria.

Day 3

The final day consisted of a visit to the Porsche Design Studio, also in Zell am See, where products that have nothing to do with the Porsche cars (watches, bicycles, kitchen appliances, laptop computers, TVs, etc.) are designed for various manufacturers. From the Design Studio, we were able to see in the distance the Porsche family residence in Zell am See. This is also is the final resting place of Ferdinand Porsche.

The last day of the tour also took us through typical Bavarian country roads and a final (sigh!) drive on the Autobahn back to Ludwigsburg, where we reluctantly bid “Aloha Oe” to “our” Porsche and the other tour participants.

The PCA Treffen Experience

If you would like to tour the Porsche Factories and Museums and experience the German and Bavarian countryside, then you should book PCA Treffen tour.

And if you dreamed of speeding through the German Autobahns in an exotic, state of the art, high performance Porsche, then definitely consider booking the Post Treffen tour or a tour with through the Porsche Travel Club (check out the Travel Club on the PCA website). A variety of tours are available, all of which include driving a Porsche. I promise you won’t be disappointed.