Paul-Ernst Strähle

Date of birth : 1927-09-20
Deceased : 2010-10-27

Biography Paul-Ernst Strähle

Paul-Ernst Strähle was born in Schorndorf on September 20, 1927 as the son of the Swabian aviation pioneer Paul Strähle. After the end of the Second World War, he successfully completed a mechanical and commercial apprenticeship in his parents‘ car and motorcycle business which he then built up into a successful Volkswagen and Porsche dealership in the following years. Paul-Ernst Strähle’s passion for Porsche was so big that he even refused a professional race contract with Mercedes-Benz, because he only wanted to race Porsche.

From 1951 onwards, Paul-Ernst Strähle also devoted himself to motorsport with great passion.  He achieved his first successes, including a class victory in the “Mille Miglia”, in his VW Beetle that was dubbed “Dapferle“ and was fitted with a Porsche engine. Paul-Ernst Strähle became one of the most successful sports car racing drivers in Europe in the Porsche 356 from the second half of the 1950s onwards. His long list of victories included countless class wins in major races such as the “Mille Miglia“ in Italy, the 1000 Kilometre Race on the Nürburgring or the “Targa Florio” in Sicily. Among his most important rally successes were overall victories in the Adria Rally (1953, 1956), the Tour of Belgium (1957), the Liège-Rome-Liège Rally (1959) and the Tour of Corsica (1960).

The former German Motor Racing Champion (1955), European Rally Vice Champion (1956) and German Rally Champion (1958) ended his active motorsport career in 1963. After that he concentrated more on his flourishing car dealership. In 1966, however, he set up the racing team “Strähle Autosport“. The team achieved numerous successes with Porsche models in various race series over a period of almost three decades. From 1977 onwards, Paul-Ernst Strähle also dedicated himself to historical motorsport. In his famous Porsche 356 A Carrera ( registration number “WN-V2”) , he became a highlight of many classic car events.  As a natural born winner, he won various classic races and hillclimbs.
Later , the car with this legendary registration, was brought back in the family. Paul-Ernst Strähle bought the car and shows it on a regular base in classic events, like the 2013 Classic Days Schloss Dyck.

Paul-Ernst Strähle had a close relationship with Porsche right up until old age. He was a regular guest at events in the new Porsche Museum in Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen. His son, Paul-Ernst Strähle Jr. is co-organiser of the annual Strähle Porsche Swap Meet in Schorndorf. In the beginning, Paul-Ernst Strähle was regular guest at the event. This was a unique occasion for him to catch up with old friends like Herbert Linge, Hans Herrmann, Eberhard Mahle, Peter Falk …