Porsche’s 918 Spyder
I wonder if I can pick one of these up in Costa Rica…
It is expected to cost $630,000 (£410,000) if and when it reaches production, which would make the 918 Spyder the most expensive Porsche in history.
The 918 supercar, first unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show in March, is not officially scheduled for production, having been made solely as a concept car so far. But in April Wolfgang Duerheimer, the head of development at Porsche, said that if 1,000 customers showed interest in buying one, they would consider producing it.
Now two unnamed sources have told Wired magazine that more than 2,000 people have “made non-binding expressions of interest” in the car. So far there is no word from Porsche over what their decision will be.
According to Porsche, the 918 Spyder’s 500-horsepower V8, supplemented by two electric motors by the axles giving an extra 218 horsepower, will push it to 100kmh (62mph) in just 3.2 seconds, with a top speed of 198mph.
In its most economical mode, Porsche claim that the car can achieve fuel consumption of three litres per 100km, or around 79 miles per gallon, and just 70g carbon dioxide emitted per kilometre. For comparison, the Toyota Prius T3 Hybrid gives off 89g/km, and 4.6l/100km. Porsche’s figures have not been independently verified, suggesting they must be best-case examples at least.
The 918 Spyder has four driving modes, each giving a different balance between economy and performance. “Eco” runs entirely on the electrical motors, with a battery range of 16 miles. “Hybrid” uses both fuel and electricity as conditions warrant. “Sport” does similar, but with the balance shifted towards speed, with most of the power going to the rear wheels. “Race” goes purely for performance, with the electric motors redirecting energy lost in braking back to the wheels in a “push to pass” boost.
Frank Biller, an analyst at Landesbank Baden-Wuerttemberg, told Automotive News Europe that the 918 Spyder could enhance Porsche’s environmental reputation. Porsche is owned by Volkswagen, which also makes Lamborghini and Bentley vehicles, some of “Europe’s worst gas guzzlers” according to Mr Biller.