Porsche has confirmed that its 918 Spyder hybrid supercar concept will be put into production. The dramatic concept will be an indirect successor to the Carrera GT, sitting at the top of the Porsche range as both its halo hypercar and the ultimate showcase of its hybrid powertrain technology.
The Porsche supervisory board confirmed today that the decision had been made following "overwhelming response from the public and customers to the concept study".
The Porsche 918 Spyder was the star of the Geneva motor show in March. The mid-engined two-seater achieves headline figures of 78mpg and 70g/km of CO2. It hits 62mph from a standstill in 3.2sec and can go on to reach a top speed of 198mph.
The car is powered by a 500bhp V8 petrol engine - a development of the RS Spyder racer's 3.4-litre unit - and a pair of electric motors with a combined output of 218bhp. The front wheels are driven by one electric motor and the rear wheels by the engine and the other motor, making the 918 Spyder four-wheel drive.
Porsche says the car is capable of a sub-7m30s lap around the Nurburgring, quicker than the Carrera GT. It can also travel up to 16 miles on battery power alone and is a plug-in hybrid. It is similar in length and height to the Boxster and Cayman, but is much wider than both of these. The body and shell are made from carbonfibre-reinforced plastic, but there is also extensive use of magnesium and aluminium. The concept weighs 1490kg.
Porsche had initially been cagey about its chances of production. Potential customers were able to sign declarations of interest from Geneva and the most recent reports claimed more than 2000 of these had been received. The hybrid supercar may end up being priced at around 500,000 euros (£420,000) – eclipsing the £321,000 Carrera GT.
The concept will be at Pebble Beach next month where customers are expected to be able to formally express their interest in the car, and possibly even place deposits.
"Production of the 918 Spyder in a limited series proves that we are taking the right approach with Porsche Intelligent Performance featuring the combination of supreme performance and efficient drivetrain concepts," said CEO Michael Macht. "We will develop the 918 Spyder in Weissach and assemble it in Zuffenhausen. This is also a very important commitment to Germany as a manufacturing base."