Hy­brid cham­pi­ons

Race tests pave way for first purely elec­tric road-go­ing Porsche by 2020

The Witness - Wheels - - MOTORING -

PORSCHE is back to be­ing World Cham­pi­ons, and this time the com­pany did it with a hy­brid elec­tric-petrol driv­e­train.

But don’t think driv­e­train like in Toy­ota Prius or Chevro­let Volt, for the Porsche that won the man­u­fac­tur­ers’cham­pi­onship was built by Porsche Re­search and De­vel­op­ment Cen­ter in Weis­sach near Stuttgart, to make a com­bined 662 kW — 368 kW of which comes from the two-litre V4 petrol en­gine and 294 kW from the elec­tric mo­tor.

With the de­sign of the 919’s hy­brid sys­tems, the race de­part­ment did pi­o­neer­ing work. Es­pe­cially with re­gards to high volt­age tech­nol­ogy, the 919 works as an ex­per­i­men­tal lab­o­ra­tory for the volt­age level of fu­ture elec­tric road go­ing sports cars.

This way the knowl­edge gained on race tracks al­lowed the prod­uct cars’ devel­op­ers to in­tro­duce the four-door con­cept study Mis­sion E with 800 Volt tech­nol­ogy. The first purely elec­tric driven road­go­ing sports car from Porsche will go into pro­duc­tion within the cur­rent decade.

The sports car brand from StuttgartZuf­fen­hausen with the in­no­va­tive Le Mans Pro­to­type Porsche 919 Hy­brid se­cured the man­u­fac­tur­ers’ ti­tle in the FIA World En­durance Cham­pi­onship one race be­fore the sea­son’s fi­nale. At the six­hour race in Shang­hai this Sun­day the driver trios of Timo Bern­hard (DE)/ Bren­don Hart­ley (NZ)/Mark Web­ber (AU) and Ro­main Du­mas (FR)/Neel Jani (CH)/Marc Lieb (DE) fin­ished first and fourth to earn Porsche 38 points. Hav­ing now scored 301 points in to­tal, Audi (222) and Toy­ota (207) can­not now catch Porsche at the last round in Bahrain on Novem­ber 19.

Michael Steiner, board mem­ber for re­search and de­vel­op­ment of Porsche AG, wit-nessed the ti­tle win on site and said: “The sec­ond man­u­fac­tur­ers’ world cham­pion-ship ti­tle for Porsche is an­other con­fir­ma­tion of the 919 Hy­brid’s brave con­cept.

“The Weis­sach de­vel­oped pro­to­type joins other im­por­tant Porsche race cars that were al-so ahead of their times, such as the 718 RS, 904, 917 or 956.

“They all wrote mo­tor-sport his­tory and sig­nif­i­cantly fired the road car de­vel­op­ment. This also goes for the 919 Hy­brid. I’m proud on the en­tire team.”

Fritz Enzinger, Vice Pres­i­dent LMP1, added: “This big suc­cess was only pos­si­ble thanks to a great team ef­fort. Me­chan­ics, engi­neers and driv­ers and many more peo-ple be­hind the scenes were fight­ing hard for this, and have now been re­warded for the sec­ond time af­ter 2015. This doesn’t prove only the 919 Hy­brid’s po­ten­tial, but also the ex­cel­lence of the team. I want to thank ev­ery­body from my heart.”

For the fu­tur­is­tic Porsche 919 Hy­brid it is an­other chap­ter in a story of suc­cess. In 2014 the class one Le Mans pro­to­type (LMP1) de­buted with a unique pow­er­train con­cept.

Since then Porsche has won the Le Mans 24-hour race twice, to take over-all vic­tory num­ber 17 in 2015 and 18 in 2016. In 2015, which was the sec­ond sea-son for the young team, Porsche also won the man­u­fac­tur­ers’ world cham­pi­onship. Last year’s driv­ers’ ti­tle went to Bern­hard/Hart­ley/Web­ber in a nerve wrack­ing fi­nale in Bahrain.

With one race to go, the cur­rent cham­pi­onship lead­ers are this year’s Le Mans win­ners Du­mas/Jani/Lieb. In to­tal, from 24 races, the Porsche 919 Hy­brid has 13 race wins and 15 pole po­si­tions to its tally.

— News­press

PHOTO: PORSCHE

Porsche 919 Hy­brid, Porsche Team: Bren­don Hart­ley, Mark Web­ber, Timo Bern­hard.

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