Now here is a new Porsche model that we can get excited about! We’ve been hearing about the upcoming small Macan crossover and possibility of a “Pajun” mid-size sedan far too much. Those cars are part of a plan by the Volkswagen Group to push Porsche sales to 200,000 by 2018.
Let’s get back to real sports cars. The 918 Spyder is just that – it will be the fastest, most expensive Porsche ever in fact. The car was first shown off at the Geneva Motor Show in 2010, as a mid-engined range-topping successor to the Carrera GT. Following a positive reception from the public, Porsche approved the 918 for production.
The company has announced that the first initial prototypes have been completed, with the 918 on track for a production start date in September 2013. Given that it was shown off as a concept in Geneva, we already have a very good idea of what the production car will look like. Still, Porsche has released some images of the prototypes for our viewing pleasure. Their “camouflage” is designed to evoke memories of the 917 racers of yesteryear. Much of Porsche’s development energy is being focused on the unique powertrain. “What we are doing with the 918 Spyder is redefining driving fun, efficiency and performance,” said Wolfgang Hatz, Member of the Executive Board Research and Development of Porsche AG.
There will be a gas/electric plug-in setup that combines a 4.0-liter V-8 making 500 horsepower and two electric motors that combine for a power output of 770 hp. “They are therefore a critical component in this vehicle into which we have put all of our expertise and capacity for innovation,” said Hatz. Weight will also be reduced thanks to a full carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) monoque. The result is a 0-60 time of 3.1-seconds, a top speed of 199 mph and 78 miles to the gallon on the European testing cycle. That sounds like a hybrid we could live with! Too bad it will cost about $845,000…..