2014 Porsche 918 Spyder

2014 Porsche 918 Spyder Review

by Sales Team on May 13, 2014

Redefining the Hybrid | 2014 Porsche 918 Spyder

2014 Porsche 918 Spyder

The design of the innovative new 2014 918 Spyder Porsche marries influence of Porsche’s legacy of race cars while simultaneous paving the way for the future of hybrids. [click to continue…]

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Widespread Consumer Acceptance of the Hybrid Vehicle

Porsche Panamera E-Hybrid

We have had Gas-Electric Hybrid vehicles on the road now since 2000, when the first hyper-efficient, tear shaped 2 passenger Honda Insight made its debut.  The Toyota Prius soon followed, with both cars going to early adopters of Green Technology. Several generations later we now see Hybrid vehicles in every market segment, with most car companies selling a Hybrid version of each of their volume model lines. For the most part these cars are identical to their more mainstream counterparts, apart from the more complex and efficient drivetrains. [click to continue…]

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Despite being roughly under two years away, Porsche was still confident enough to show off its upcoming revolutionary supercar, the 918 Spyder plug-in hybrid. This event, held at the recently acquired Nardó test track in Italy, featured only the most prestigious of automotive publications. A few weeks back, we shared with you the thoughts of Britain’s EVO Magazine, but this week features the thoughts and insight of Motor Trend, one of the biggest auto enthusiast outlets in the world.

Notably, the crudely pieced 918 Spyder prototype is far from looking, feeling, or driving like it will during completion. But progress on the 770 horsepower triple-powered super hybrid is very apparent. When finished, the 918 Spyder will look nearly identical to the concept car that was unveiled a few years ago during the Geneva Motor Show.

What makes the upcoming 918 so special is that it promises to do feats that were thought impossible just a few years ago. Things like achieving 145 km/h without using a single drop of fuel, while possessing the capability to reach speeds of 325 km/h. This is made possible by utilizing one of the most advanced drivetrains the world has ever seen: a 500-horsepower V8 working with not one, but two electric motors producing an additional 218 hp or 160kW of output to all four wheels, with the ability to travel 25.7 km on electricity alone.

For better cooling, the V8′s titanium exhaust outlets send spent hydrocarbons out and over the engine into a muffler fitted atop the engine. This method ensures that heat in the engine compartment is kept to a minimum and – serving both form and function.

When the finished product makes its way to market, here’s what to expect:

  • A sky-high $800,000 price (USD), and $200k deposit
  • There will be over 50 CPUs in controlling the vehicle’s functions
  • The electrical system alone took 9 months to develop
  • Every single light in the 918 will be an LED, from the headlamps to the interior and everything between
  • The passenger sits 20mm further forward than the driver — for better weight distribution
  • The seven-speed PDK transmission is shared with the new 911 — but has been flipped upside down to fit the 918
  • Every body panel is carbon fiber, except the bumpers — for weight reduction
  • There’s a “Manufactured in Flacht” sticker on the back as a reminder that Porsche Motorsport is the main developer
  • Two detachable carbon fiber targa panels will be utilized in the design.

So, what made Porsche take this route of super high performance and super high efficiency? By watching the video above, which features and interview with Wolfgang Hatz, Porsche’s head of Research and Development, some answers can be found.

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When Porsche first revealed its conceptual 918 Spyder plug-in hybrid supercar at the 2010 Geneva Motor Expo, media and patrons alike were absolutely taken aback by it. Not only was the Porsche absolutely beautiful and aggressive while maintaining hints of traditional styling, but it had something the world had never seen before: a 500-horsepower V8 working with not one, but two electric motors producing an additional 218 hp or 160kW of output to all four wheels, with the ability to travel 16 miles on electricity alone. Better yet, it could move. Fast.

Porsche claimed that the 918 Spyder possesses the capability to launch itself from 0-100 km/h in a blistering 3.2 seconds. And because of its moonshot of a drivetrain, it could return an incredible 3.0 L/100 km based on the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC). These seemed like numbers only a concept car could produce. But Porsche left everyone with a feeling of excitement, and amazement when the company announced that it will build the 918 Spyder just like the concept. 

Fast forward to today, where select members of the automotive media at-large were invited to Nardo, Italy, for a sneak peek look at how Porsche’s progress of the world’s first supercar that can be plugged into a wall outlet is coming along.

No. This Mad Max-inspired mashup featured in the video done by EVO Magazine of mismatched 911 paneling for a body is not the finished product. Far from, in fact.

To point, the powertrain of the upcoming 918 was only configured at the time to produce 50-percent of what’s available – which still equated to 400 hp and a redline of 6,000 rpm. And because of the raw presentation, the top speed was limited to just 80 mph.

When the finished product makes its way to market, here’s what to expect:

  • A sky-high $800,000 price (USD), and $200k deposit
  • There will be over 50 CPUs in controlling the vehicle’s functions
  • The electrical system alone took 9 months to develop
  • Every single light in the 918 will be an LED, from the headlamps to the interior and everything between
  • The passenger sits 20mm further forward than the driver — for better weight distribution
  • The seven-speed PDK transmission is shared with the new 911 — but has been flipped upside down to fit the 918
  • Every body panel is carbon fiber, except the bumpers — for weight reduction
  • There’s a “Manufactured in Flacht” sticker on the back as a reminder that Porsche Motorsport is the main developer
  • Two detachable carbon fiber targa panels will be utilized in the design.
When finished, the production version will tip the scales at less than 1,678 kg, nearly 80-percent of the weight is below the centerline of the car, giving the 918 a fantastically low center of gravity. Additionally, the entire chassis is a mix of carbon fiber and aluminum, including the passenger compartment and associated crash structure, which weighs in at a mere 220 kg.
Carbon fiber assembly has come a long way since Porsche Carrera GT (which also utilized a carbon fiber tub). 10 years ago, it took Porsche took five days to make the GT’s chassis. Today, Porsche and birth up to five 918 tubs a day thanks to new innovations in composites and assembly methods.

When powertrain development is completed, Porsche says that the 918′s 4.6-liter V8 (originally fitted to the three-time ALMS LMP2 Championship-winning RS Spyder) will produce an amazing 570 hp. Add the power of the front-mounted 80 kW motor and the rear-mounted 90 kW motor, and the 918 produces 770 hp. Seven hundred and seventy horsepower. From the factory.

If there’s enough power in the  liquid-cooled, lithium-ion batteries,the 918 can achieve 145 km/h without using a single drop of fuel, rocketing all the way to 325 km/h.

For better cooling, the V8′s titanium exhaust outlets send spent hydrocarbons out and over the engine into a muffler fitted atop the engine. This method ensures that heat in the engine compartment is kept to a minimum and – serving both form and function.

The first of 918 production examples are expected to launch September 18, 2013.

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