The UK's Autocar claims to be the world's oldest car magazine. More crucially for us, being in the business since 1895 also suggests that it's printed more automotive advertisements than any other publication.
Lucky, some of those end up , like this gem from 1984, which informed the public about Porsche's involvement in designing the Airbus A310's flight deck. The wide-body jet was introduced just a year earlier by Swissair.
Porsche explained how it made perfect sense for Airbus' second ever airliner to come with a touch of Weissach, knowing that the 911's interior design is clear and uncluttered, providing great visibility and readability. Airbus wanted to figure out how to create a cockpit with the lowest possible stress levels for pilots—Porsche's army of expert engineers came up with an optimal control environment.
The ad also details how Ferdinand Porsche's first breakthrough was an air-cooled six-cylinder airship engine, followed by his doctorate, which was awarded for aeronautical achievements instead of automotive.
Then, we jump to the 1980s and the Porsche PFM 3200, a six-cylinder horizontally opposed air-cooled aircraft engine that seemed like a good idea at the time, but was only sold in limited numbers between 1985 and 1991.
The PFM 3200 was based on the 911 Carrera's 3.2, and development was carried by Porsche-Flugmotoren between 1981 and 1985. Once ready to go sky-high, the PFM 3200 entered the market with advanced features like a single-lever performance control unit, fully aerobatic fuel and oil supplies, fuel injection with automatic altitude compensation, and an optional turbocharger.
It made peak power at 5300 rpm, producing 217 hp in standard form, or 241 with a Garrett turbo. Despite Porsche leaving the field fairly quickly due to money drying up, the engine did make it into a number of small aircrafts, including the popular Mooney M20L.
Unfortunately, since Porsche stopped supporting the PFM 3200 in 2007, most aircrafts originally equipped with this motor were retrofitted with engines that have replacement parts readily available. Now, the only was to get a Porsche flat-six airborne is to jump a 911. Rally cars can do that.