Porsche 918 Spyder Hybrid supercar will get a bigger V8 and only two electric motors

Article by Christian Andrei, on January 10, 2012

Finally, Porsche has confirmed that 918 Spyder Hybrid supercar, which will soon start production, would make its debut at the 2013 Frankfurt Auto Show. Porsche’s Christophorus Magazine reports that the 918 Spyder will feature several changes from the concept car unveiled at the 2010 Geneva Motor Show.

The production version will be powered by a 4.6L V8 instead of the 3.4L V8 that was announced previously.

It has more displacement but then, it has also been provided with plenty of new technology, including a central injector positioned directly beside a spark plug, a central oil feed to the crankshaft, a variable-pressure composite oil pump and scavenge pump, forged lightweight pistons from a Formula 1 supplier, a very high compression ratio and variable valve timing – a first for a Porsche model.

The new 4.6L V8 continues to be based on the race-intended V8 used in the original RS Spyder LMP2 race car, says MotorAuthority. It is rumored that the motor will deliver about 550hp and that the 918 won’t keep one of the three electric motors initially seen in the concept.

The pair that’s remaining will produce a combined 230hp so the combined output would have to be about 780hp. This vehicle has a dry weight of 3,700-lbs and has a price tag of up to $845,000.

The light body of the Porsche 918 Spyder is similar to the drivetrain in that it features the car's motorsport DNA. It has a modular structure featuring the monocoque bodyshell that is made out of carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic, as well as several aluminum and magnesium elements. These help keep the weight below 1,490 kg, while also guaranteeing the best driving precision because of top-notch torsional rigidity.

This reminds you of the very successful racing cars such as the Porsche RS Spyder and the Porsche 917. The 918 Spyder uses both racing car dimensions, balanced surfaces, as well as well defined structured design and innovative details. Overall, these create an ideal coming together of function and form, echoing the brand's design philosophy.

The engineers and designers were able to strike a balance between progress and tradition, giving the 918 Spyder a very powerful look when on the road. It has the variable aerodynamics that Porsche cars are known for, and this guarantees both traditional and visionary highlights especially when you look at the area near the rear spoiler. The rear hoods extend out to the headrests, helping the car's aerodynamics and host the retractable air intakes that feature a ram air feature.

The interior from the future

The passenger and driver are comfortably embedded into the shaped sports bucket seats, making them part of the cockpit. Plus, the cockpit gives you a glimpse into the interior design and architecture that future Porsches might have.

There are three circular dials that manages road speed, engine speed and energy management. This is a throwback to racing cars from the 60s with its driver orientation that is also typical of all Porsche cars.

Also, the center console rises up and hosts a touchscreen to help the driver operate the car, while also reducing the number of visible controls.

This gives the illusion that the driver has direct control of the car. The control units that are important for the driver are clustered together on the sports steering wheel while you can access the different driving modes using a switch that calls up the drive programs and also serves to activate E-boosting.

The instruments are also color coded: green lamps light the running modes that are focused on consumption, while red lights are used for performance-focused driving programs.

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