Meet the 2014 Porsche 918 Hybrid Spyder, a mid-engined super/hyper/hybrid car designed by Michael Mauer. While still in it’s final stages of R & D and slated for production in September 2013, the Porsche 918 Spyder is powered by a V8 engine that currently produces 562hp and tuned to rev to 9200rpm. The 918 Spyder was developed from the RS Spyder Le Mans Prototype racing car, making this hybrid one beastly ride.
Remember this is a hybrid so Porsche couldn’t simply stop at the already impressive stats produced by their V8, they decided to really push the envelope and supplement the 562hp V8 with a pair of synchronous electric motors – one producing 107hp for the front wheels and the other producing 121hp for the rear wheels churning out a combined 759hp and 568 ft-lb torque.
Wrap a carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic monocoque around those impressive engines, add in a 7-speed gearbox and Porsche’s very own own double clutch system (PDK) and shazaam…you get a spacecraft capable of 0-100 km/h in 3 seconds with a top speed of 320 km/h(200mph) and a staggering 78mpg. That’s correct, 78mpg, officially making this car a Saudi’s worst nightmare! In addition to the plug-in recharge, the batteries are also charged by regenerative braking. The 918 Spyder offers five different driving modes allowing the vehicle to utilize different combinations of electric and gas engines depending on the driver’s desires.
Not only is the Porsche 918 a technological marvel it’s also a pleasure to look at. I never thought the famed Carrera GT could ever be made to look old, however the new 918’s wonderfully shaped design definitely dates the Carrera GT. Let’s be honest, Porsche hasn’t been producing the most attractive cars on the planet but I would have to say they’re certainly on the right track with this one. Its curvaceous lines are perfectly proportioned giving the 918 a very aggressive and exotic stance.
One of my favorite design features about the Porsche 918 Spyder is where they decided to place the exhaust system. For us car fanatics there is no better area to place a great sounding exhaust than directly behind your head. Yup, two massive exhaust pipes jetting upward out of the engine bay emit beautifully sounding exhaust fumes straight up into the air. This instantly reminded me of the old Le Mans and Can AM cars ripping down the straightaway with their massive engines spewing exhaust fumes infused with the sweet smell of race fuel. Porsche didn’t design the exhaust system purely for nostalgic reasons; they were placed there to address a heating problem with the battery cells that are placed behind the cockpit.
Porsche really hit their mark with the 918 Spyder combining cutting edge technologies with nostalgic and intimidating lines and unbelievable performance stats which is really setting the stage for a new era of super/hyper/hybrid cars to come. With all the money you save on fuel, it more than justifies the rumored $850K +/- price tag for one of these hybrids.
CHECK OUT VIDEO OF THE 918 IN ACTION BELOW: