Few names in the automotive world ring with luxury and performance like Porsche. A brand known for famous models such as the 911 and Boxster, Porsche has long been considered one of the more prestigious car manufacturers. A company that brought race cars to the road.
But of course for many of us, the dream of getting behind the wheel of a Porsche is simply that. A dream. That was, until the Porsche Experience Center Tokyo (PEC Tokyo) opened its doors, offering the chance to experience the thrill of getting behind the wheel of a brand-new Porsche, all without having to own one.
A World of Racing
Located in Kisarazu, Chiba, PEC Tokyo is the ninth of its kind in the world, offering visitors a chance to experience Porsche vehicles in a variety of controlled conditions, many of which are unique when compared to the other PEC courses around the world.
Cars race around the handling trackImage courtesy of Porsche Japan
Boasting a 2.1-kilometre handling track, PEC Tokyo makes special use of Chiba’s natural topography, creating a track that unlike other PEC locations around the world, is three-dimensional rather than flat.
This design has allowed for the realistic recreation of famous corners from international racetracks, such as the Carousel at Nürburgring in Germany and the Corkscrew at Laguna Seca in the United States. A design that allows drivers to experience first-hand the sensation of driving a high-performance vehicle on a real racetrack.
Hands on Training
For those looking to hone their steering skills, PEC Tokyo also offers a number of driver training and experience modules, which allow customers to get behind the wheel under a variety of conditions and even receive one-on-one instruction from professional Porsche driving coaches. Designed specifically to improve upon car control skills, there is the low friction handling track, kick plate and drift circle.
The Porsche Experience Center Tokyo drift circle in actionImage courtesy of Porsche Japan
The low friction handling track, a course made with a polished concrete surface that reduces traction, allows drivers to practice vehicle control, while the drift circle, a circular concrete course with a sprinkler system, gives you the chance to try your hand at some sideways sliding action. Turning up the difficulty, the kick plate module uses hydraulic plates embedded in the track, which when driven over, move randomly to throw the car into a spin.
Taking further advantage of the surrounding terrain, an off-road course featuring hills of up to nearly 40 degrees allows drivers to experience the capabilities of the Porsche Cayenne and Macan in the most extreme off-road area of any PEC location.
A Porsche Cayenne attacks the off-road courseImage courtesy of Porsche Japan
But for those keen to see a Porsche pushed to its limits by a professional, demonstration laps are also available. During this experience, visitors can hop into the passenger seat while a Porsche driving coach takes them on a high-speed hot lap. This experience can also be booked by those without a driver’s licence.
Even once your time drifting and driving on the outdoor track is up, that doesn't mean the racing has to stop. Heading inside, PEC Tokyo also has on offer their state-of-the-art Simulator Lab. Getting behind the wheel of these simulators is as close as you can get to the real thing. So realistic in fact, that even professional drivers make use of the system for their own practice.
The Porsche Experience Center Tokyo Simulator LabImage courtesy of Porsche Japan
Allowing visitors to experience some of the world’s most famous racetracks, these simulators are open to people of all ages, provided they meet the necessary height requirement of 140cm.
Driving Up an Appetite
A long day behind the wheel will make anyone hungry, and of course, PEC Tokyo has plenty of options to keep you satisfied.
On the first floor, Café 956 is the perfect pit stop, offering a delicious selection of coffees and pastries that will have you fuelled up and ready to get back on the track in no time.
Restaurant 906 overlooking the Porsche Experience Center TokyoImage courtesy of Porsche Japan
For those looking to take some time out for uniquely Porsche-inspired meal, or even to celebrate a special occasion, Restaurant 906 couldn’t be better. Boasting elevated panoramic views of the racetrack outside while open for lunch, dinner and even a buffet brunch on the 3rd Sunday of every month, Restaurant 906 has something for everyone.
Take Home a Piece of Porsche
After having driven and eaten to your heart’s content, PEC Tokyo still has plenty on offer for those looking to wind down before heading home.
Inside, visitors can enjoy both the latest and most historical Porsche models on display, as well as the official item shop. Here you can pick up official Porsche branded items such as clothing, accessories, luggage or even a model car. The perfect way to remind yourself of your experiences behind the wheel of the real thing, while still looking forward to next time.
Night falls on the Porsche Experience Center TokyoImage courtesy of Porsche Japan
While international visitors are more than welcome to book an experience at PEC Tokyo, please note that possession of a valid international driver’s permit from your home country is required to participate in any driving activities. For information on obtaining an international driver’s permit, please consult your local motor vehicle authority.
Of course, valid Japanese driver’s licences are also accepted.
Reaching the Porsche Experience Center Tokyo does require a car or taxi.
For those visiting via train, PEC Tokyo is approximately 20 minutes by car or taxi from Kisarazu Station.
Address: 1148-1 Nakanodai, Izushima, Kisarazu City, Chiba Prefecture 292-0034