Race tests pave way for first purely electric road-going Porsche by 2020
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.
Porsche 919 Hybrid, Porsche Team: Brendon Hartley, Mark Webber, Timo Bernhard.