The official announcement has finally arrived: Porsche will produce the 918 Spyder in “limited series production.”
When the Porsche 918 Spyder concept was revealed just before the 2010 Geneva auto show in March, it was assumed that the car was bound for production.
At that point Porsche had never shown a concept car without putting it on the road, and Porsche suggested that this rule wouldn’t change under new VW ownership.
Details of the car’s volume and positioning are still unknown, but we would expect the former to be very low and the latter to be very high. The 918 Spyder will be Porsche’s flagship, the brand’s attempt to set the high-water mark for dual-source power.
The 918 Spyder is a performance hybrid with four distinct driving modes and an extra, KERS-type overboost feature like that found on some F1 cars in 2009.
It is motivated by various combinations of its 500-plus-hp, 3.4-liter V-8 (derived from the RS Spyder LMP2 car) and three lithium-ion-powered electric motors—two on the front axle and one integrated into the transmission—that make a total of 218 hp.
Interestingly, the 918 Spyder can function as both a parallel or a series hybrid, as the electric front axle can propel the car on its own, or in conjunction with the engine.
In its thriftiest mode, Porsche states a European-cycle figure of 78 mpg. In race mode, expect a top speed in the neighborhood of 200 mph and a Carrera GT–beating Nürburgring lap time of 7:30.
Source: Car and Driver