Porsche is in the midst of developing a new mid-engined supercar, likely to be called the Porsche Spyder RS, to fill the void left by the Carrera GT.
Contrary to initial reports from a French car magazine, the new Spyder RS will provide the basis for an advanced new endurance racer, rather than using the current LMP2 RS Spyder racer as a base.
Our image is an artist's rendering that was produced in June 2006, when rumours of the car were first broken by Autocar.
The two-seat open top was originally conceived to go on sale in limited numbers in early 2012, but is now possibly delayed owning to Porsche’s rocky financial situation and a planned fusion with Volkswagen.
The new Spyder RS will run a newly developed twin-turbocharged 3.4-litre V8 engine that, in its ultimate state of tune, is claimed to kick out in the region of 480bhp, with drive reaching the rear wheels via a ZF-developed seven-speed double-clutch gearbox.
Using design and engineering ideas initially brought to the Carrera GT, the new Porsche supercar is based around a sturdy carbonfibre monocoque structure that uses a separate cradle for the engine and its ancillaries. But while the Carrera GT was conceived to be built in very limited numbers, its direct successor is likely to produced in larger numbers over a period of at least five years.
Despite the heavy cloak of secrecy that surrounded the new supercar up until now, Autocar sources in Zuffenhausen indicate it is in fact quite well advanced; if not at prototype mule stage, then not far off.
Further details remain scarce, but plans call for assembly to be carried out on a dedicated line at Porsche's Leipzig plant.