With the last Porsche 918 having rolled off the assembly line in June 2015, Porsche Hangout thought it would be a good idea to look back at Porsches latest hybrid and talk more about what makes this car truly a magnificent vehicle.
From its stunning design to its amazing performance and efficiency the Porsche’s 918 Spyder introduced us to the idea of a hybrid hypercar.
Porsche & Hybrid Cars
Hybrid cars (originally developed and designed by energy analyst Amory Lovins at the Rocky Mountain Institute) were created with the hopes of achieving a three to five-fold improvement in fuel economy, better or equal performance compared with today’s cars. The original move of hybrid hypercars was initially quite impressive, but with the aerodynamic body, ultra-light construction, hybrid drive, and low-drag design the 918 Spyder may well be the realization of these hopes. Because it appeared first, debuting in concept form, at the 80th Geneva Motor Show in 2010, one cannot dispute that the Porsche was years ahead of its rivals.
Performance & Structure
The German 918 Spyder can scarcely be considered “an everyday vehicle”, but owners will not be disheartened, as it is in actual fact, able to take on a number of everyday tasks. To attain its astonishing driving performance, the 918 Spyder contains a high-performance internal combustion engine that combines front and rear axle electric drives making the vehicles combined power greater than 880 hp. Just as interesting is the fuel consumption, when tested on the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) it was calculated at approximately three liters per 100. This is an equivalent to around 70 g/km of CO2 emissions.
The vehicle’s structure consists of carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) which reduces the car’s weight but still retains remarkable rigidity and precision. It is powered by a naturally-aspirated 4.6 litre V8 engine, 608-horsepower with two electric motors, one which sends 154 hp to the rear wheels this doubles as the vehicle’s main generator, the second electric motor which sits towards the front adds an additional 125-hp driving the front axle, this can be decoupling via electric clutch when not in use. This results in a combined 887 hp and 944 pound-feet of torque, pushing the car to 60 mph in 2.5 seconds, 124 mph in 7.3 seconds, and to 186 mph in 20.9 seconds with a top speed of around 340 km/h (210 mph). Top-mounted exhausts which exit on either side of the vehicle make an unbelievable, metallic racket and spit fire when pushed to its 9,000 rmp redline. The electric motors are driven by a 6.8 kWh lithium-ion battery pack which delivers a tested all-electric range of 19 km (12 mi). A Weissach performance package is an added option, which results in an even lighter, faster, and more surreal vehicle.
The 918 Spyder has nothing to fear from any other car in its class, on the road, on the circuit, accelerating through the gears. Its power delivery is impresive too. This slightly disguised RS Spyder engine has a response that’s the envy of any of its turbocharged rivals and in EV mode only, the 918 can cover 0-60mph in 6.6sec.
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