Like most super-luxury vehicles, even the wildest concepts will be built if there are enough buyers. The Porsche 918 Spyder Hybrid, first shown at the 2010 Geneva Auto Show, is one such car. While it may look like a revised version of the Carerra GT, the 918 uses a hybrid drivetrain to deliver outstanding performance when it’s desired and outstanding fuel economy when it’s not.
Although all the details haven’t been released yet, we do know the concept’s 3.4l Spyder RS-derived V8 has grown to 4.0l and will be connected to a seven speed PDK dual clutch transmission. The car has two electric motors: One on the front axle, and one on the rear. Electric power is provided by the Spyder concept’s lithium ion battery, not a flywheel accumulator like the 918 RSR displayed at this year’s Detroit Auto Show. This battery can be charged using a household outlet at 110v in about seven hours, or four hours through 230v plugs used in Europe. Details are still being worked out on other charging systems.
The 918 will come with a manually removable hardtop that can be placed in the front luggage compartment. The interior will differ only slightly from the show car while the carbon-reinforced plastic monocoque chassis will also reach production keeping the weight down to about 3,300 lbs. Porsche has said they expect the car to be able to lap the Nürburgring in 7:30, just a hair slower than the Carerra GT.
Porsche is known for absurdly expensive options, but this car really takes the cake: There is an optional special edition 911 Turbo S for people to drive while they wait for their 918 to be delivered. This 911 is stamped with your 918‘s production number and carries many of the superhybrid’s styling cues. The car costs the same as a regular Turbo S, but it will only be offered to 918 buyers.
Nine hundred and eighteen 918 Spyder Hybrids will be produced. The first cars will be delivered in November of 2013.