Porsche Automobil was founded by Ferdinand Porsche in 1931 in Stuttgart, Germany. The company is now a part of the Volkswagen Group, but Porsche owns a plurality stake in VW in a mutual ownership setup.

In the early days of its founding, Porsche did not build automobiles, but instead consulted and did development on them for other companies. One of its first clients was the German government, who wanted a "car for the people" – a Volkswagen. After the Beetle and World War II, Porsche created the Porsche 64, using many components from the successful and popular Beetle, though the company's first car is considered to be the Porsche 356 (which also used Beetle parts), developed in 1945-46 and road certified and sold in 1948.

Porsche, of course, is best-known for its 911 series of long-lived sports cars, which began in 1964 with an air-cooled, rear-mounted boxer-type engine. The original bodies for this car were built by Reuter, a chassis manufacturer. When that workshop was eventually purchased by Porsche, Reuter went on to become a seat manufacturer and is now one of the best-known in the world – Keiper-Recaro. The 911 has since become one of the most-loved and recognizable cars in history.

In the United States, Porsche operations are centered in Atlanta, Georgia. The company produces consumer (road-legal) and sports models for the market, including sports cars and crossovers. In motorsports, it is the most successful brand in history, with more than 28,000 victories and counting, including a record sixteen constructor wins at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Porsche builds about 200-300 dedicated race cars per year, depending on demand, making it the largest race car manufacturer in the world.

Porsche has also won recognition as a brand and automaker. The Luxury Institute titled Porsche as the most prestigious automotive brand. J.D. Power and Associates awarded Prosche the highest-ranked nameplate in its Initial Quality Study in 2006, 2009, and 2010.