Scottish Daily Mail



SHE can serve at speeds of more than 100 mph — but Maria Sharapova was whisked to the pre-Wimbledon party in a £700,000 electric car capable of twice that.

Keeping up the theme, her chauffeur for the night in the 214 mph carriage, pictured, was former Fomula 1 driver Mark Webber.

French Open winner Sharapova made it to the Women’s Tennis Associatio­n (WTA) event at Kensington Roof Gardens, West London, on Thursday in one of the fastest cars on the planet — the Porsche 918 Spyder — which is also one of the least polluting.

The plug-in hybrid supercar is the most powerful Porsche road-car ever built, designed both f or t he road and the racetrack.

It can accelerate from rest to 60 mph in a scintillat­ing 2.5 seconds, and hit 124 mph in 7.2 seconds — yet produces so little carbon dioxide that it is exempt from London’s Congestion Charge. The two-seater supercar will even do 93 mph in silent, pollution- free, electric- only mode.

Webber, just back from competing in last weekend’s Le Mans 24-hour race, collected Miss Sharapova from her Central London hotel and drove her to the ball. On arrival — strictly within the speed limit — she said: ‘What a way to arrive at the party. To be in the fastest Porsche with a racing driver like Mark is amazing.’ The 918 Spyder has a mid-mounted 4.6-litre V8 race engine coupled to two electric motors with lithium-ion batteries, which t ogether develop 887 bhp — equivalent to nearly nine Ford Fiestas.

It holds the lap record for a production car at Germany’s Nurburgrin­g race circuit. Yet the combinatio­n still delivers 94.1 mpg and emissions of just 72g/km and a potential electricon­ly range of 18 miles.

Porsche fan Sharapova owns a personalis­ed Panamera GTS and her confection­ery business, Sugapova, features a sweet called Speedy shaped like a 911.

 ??  ?? Top performers: Maria Sharapova and the Porsche 918 Spyder
Top performers: Maria Sharapova and the Porsche 918 Spyder
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