Porsche 918 Spyder

Jun 17, 2013

Insight gained from the development of Porsche race cars for the 2014 24 Hours of Le Mans was integrated into the 918 Spyder by Porsche engineers.

The hybrid is capable of going 0-62 mph in 2.8 seconds and 0-186 mph in 23 seconds, according to Porsche Cars North America.

The parallel full hybrid features a 4.6-liter mid-engine, a lithium ion battery with a plug-in charging system and an electric motor. The V-8 is capable of 608 hp and a maximum 390 foot-pounds of torque. The 918 Spyder can reach revs of up to 9,150 rpm.

The core of the 918 Spyder concept is its distribution of propulsive power among the three power units. Similar to motorsports cars, the five operating modes can be activated via a map switch on the steering wheel. The five modes are: E-Power, Hybrid, Sport Hybrid, Race Hybrid and Hot Lap.

The 918 Spyder has a rolling chassis as a basis, a structural concept and Porsche race car design tradition that allows it to be driven without a body, according to Porsche Cars North America. Its body is constructed from carbon fiber-reinforced plastics with a two-piece Targa roof and fixed roll-over protection system.

Another unique aspect of the vehicle is its “top pipes,” tailpipes that terminate in the upper part of the rear end immediately above the engine. An advantage of the top pipes is optimal heat removal, because hot exhaust gases are released by the shortest possible route to keep exhaust back-pressure low, according to the manufacturer.

The 918 Spyder’s design features an interior upholstered partially with Alcantara instead of leather. Lightweight magnesium wheels, minimized sound insulation and the replacement of aluminum parts with carbon help reduce the weight of the vehicle by 77 pounds. Improved aerodynamics is the result of reduced weight, according to Porsche.

With the potential to achieve world speed records, the Porsche 919’s current lap time for the North Loop of the Nürburgring is 7:14 minutes. The time was achieved in the presence of international journalists during test drives in September 2012-more than a year before the start of production.

The 918 Spyder prototype was approximately 20 seconds quicker than the Porsche Carrera GT. Porsche noted that more test drives on the Nürburgring North Loop will follow.