The official lap time of the new Porsche 918 Spyder around the Nürburgring Nordschleife is 7min 14sec. Prototypes of the advanced new petrol-electric hybrid supercar were subjected to testing at the famous German circuit. Even if Porsche wouldn’t reveal who was behind the wheel of the early version of the 918 Spyder during the test, it did announce that it achieved the best lap with a prototype that rides on standard Michelin road tyres.
It describes this model further as an optional 'Weissach package'. Porsche has also declined to say what’s included in the Weissach package. There were rumors that the go-faster kit includes items like the upgraded brakes, six-point harnesses and several ways to reduce weight.
It’s believed that to make it lighter, the stereo and aircon system were removed. Frank Walliser, head of the 918 Spyder development, said that the 918 Spyder’s lap time of 7m 14s confirmed the potential of its future-orientated driveline concept after only a few months of testing. The 918 Spyder’s official lap time is one of the fastest achieved by a road-legal car at the Nürburgring northern circuit.
It surpasses the fastest time of its predecessor, the Carrera GT, set in 2004 by about 18sec. Porsche has confirmed the testing pace of the 918 Spyder at the Nürburgring. It also introduced its hybrid driveline with an official output of 784bhp.
The new two-seater is powered by a mid-mounted 4.6-litre V8 petrol engine loosely based on what the Porsche RS Spyder race car uses. It also has a pair of electric motors positioned within the front axle assembly.
Porsche 918 Spyder features a multi-link chassis inspired by the latest motorsport design combined with additional systems including the new Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) adaptive shock-absorber system and a rear-axle steering with electro-mechanical adjustment system in every rear wheel.
This speed-sensitive adjustment offers steering angles of three degrees in every direction. Thus, the front and rear axles can be steered in either similar or opposite directions. The system steers the front and rear wheels in the opposite direction at low speeds while shortening the wheelbase. Such feature makes cornering more direct, faster, more precise and allows for a more reduced turning circle. The system steers the front and rear wheels in the same direction at higher speeds. These lengthen the wheelbase and give an increase to the rear end stability in the event of quick change of lanes for safe and stable handling.
Tires of the 918: A special challenge
The tires on the other hand need an optimum grip as well as a razor-sharp handling when taking into account the different road types. They have to be durable enough on the racetrack and must attain the lowest possible rolling resistance. However, with the help of the Porsche engineers, the Michelin tire experts were able to conquer this test in an impressive fashion. 918 Spyder rolled out of the assembly line fitted with specially tuned Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires. Moreover, throughout the testing period, 550 prototype tires have been tested right after its production.