The Porsche 918 Spyder is a mid-engined plug-in hybrid hypercar designed by Porsche. The Spyder is powered by a naturally-aspirated 4.6 litre V8 engine, developing 608 horsepower (453 kW), with two electric motors delivering an additional 279 horsepower (208 kW) for a combined output of 887 horsepower (661 kW). The 918 Spyder’s 6.8 kWh lithium-ion battery pack delivers an all-electric range of 19 km (12 mi) under EPA’s five-cycle tests. The car has a top speed of around 340 km/h (210 mph).
The 918 Spyder is a limited edition Hypercar, with 918 units manufactured and sold as a 2014 model year. Production began on September 18, 2013, with deliveries initially scheduled to begin in December 2013. The starting price wa US$847,000. The 918 Spyder was sold out in December 2014. The country with the most orders was the United States with 297 units. Production ended in June 2015.
The 918 Spyder was first shown as a concept at the 80th Geneva Motor Show in March 2010. The production version was unveiled at the September 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show. Porsche also unveiled the RSR racing variant of the 918 at the 2011 North American International Auto Show, which combines hybrid technology first used in the 997 GT3 R Hybrid, with styling from the 918 Spyder. The 918 Spyder was the second plug-in hybrid car from Porsche, after the 2014 Panamera S E-Hybrid.
- 1 Specifications
- 2 Recalls and issues
- 3 Sales and production
- 4 RSR
- 5 Nürburgring lap time record
- 6 Notable accidents
- 7 Gallery
- 8 See also
- 9 References
- 10 External links
The 918 Spyder is a mid-engined two-seater sports car designed by Michael Mauer. It is powered by a 4.6 litre V8 engine. The engine is built on the same architecture as the one used in the RS Spyder Le Mans Prototype racing car without any engine belts.
The engine weighs 135 kg according to Porsche and delivers 608 horsepower (453 kW) at 8,500 rpm and 528 N·m (389 lbf·ft) of maximum torque. This is supplemented by two electric motors delivering an additional 279 hp (208 kW). One 154 hp (115 kW) electric motor drives the rear wheels in parallel with the engine and also serves as the main generator. This motor and engine deliver power to the rear axle via a 7-speed gearbox coupled to Porsche’s own PDK double-clutch system. The front 125 hp (93 kW) electric motor directly drives the front axle; an electric clutch decouples the motor when not in use. The total system delivers 887 hp (661 kW) and 1,280 N·m (940 lbf·ft) of torque. By October 2012, the engineering design was not finalized, but Porsche provided performance figures of 0–100 km/h (62 mph) in 2.5 seconds, 0-200 km/h (120 mph) in 7.2 seconds, 300 kilometres per hour (190 mph) in 19.9 seconds and a tested top speed of 218 miles per hour (351 km/h). In Car and Driver’s independent test of the Porsche 918, C/D achieved 0-60 mph in 2.2 seconds (making it the fastest car C/D has ever tested), 0-100 mph in 4.9 seconds, 0-180 mph in 17.5 seconds, and the 1/4 mile in 9.8 seconds. In Motor Trend’s independent test of the Porsche 918, they also claimed it was the fastest car to 60 mph that they had ever tested. It stopped from 60-0 mph in 94 feet, and broke Motor Trend’s figure 8 record at 22.2 seconds.
The energy storage system is a 312-cell, liquid-cooled 6.8 kW·h lithium-ion battery positioned behind the passenger cell. In addition to a plug-in charge port at the passenger-side B-pillar, the batteries are also charged by regenerative braking and by excess output from the engine when the car is coasting. CO2 emissions are 79 g/km and fuel consumption is 3.0 L/100 km (94 imperial mpg/78 us mpg) under the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC). The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under its five-cycle tests rated the 2015 model year Porsche 918 Spyder energy consumption in all-electric mode at 50 kWh per 100 miles, which translates into a combined city/highway fuel economy of 67 miles per gallon gasoline equivalent (MPG-e) (3.5 L/100 km; 80 mpg-imp gasoline equivalent). When powered only by the gasoline engine, EPA’s official combined city/highway fuel economy is 22 mpg-US (11 L/100 km; 26 mpg-imp).
The 4.6 litre V-8 petrol engine can recharge an empty battery on about two litres of fuel. The supplied Porsche Universal Charger requires seven hours to charge the battery on a typical 110 volt household AC socket or two hours on a dedicated Charging Dock installed with a 240 volt industrial supply. An optional DC Speed Charging Station can restore the battery to full capacity in 25 minutes.
The 918 Spyder offers five different running modes: E-Drive allows the car to run under battery power alone, using the rear electric motor and front motor, giving a range of 18 miles (29 km) for the concept model. The official U.S. EPA all-electric range is 12 mi (19 km). The total range with a full tank of gasoline and a fully charged battery is 420 miles (680 km) according to EPA tests. Under the E-Drive mode the car can reach 93 mph (150 km/h). Two hybrid modes (Hybrid, and Race) use both the engine and electric motors to provide the desired levels of economy and performance. In Race mode a push-to-pass button initiates the Hot Lap setting, which delivers additional electrical power. The chassis is a carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic monocoque. The 918 has electromechanical brakes.
On July 28, 2010, after 2000 declarations of interest, the Supervisory Board of Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG, Stuttgart, gave the green light for series development of the 918 Spyder.
Recalls and issues
On July 28, 2014 a recall was issued for all Porsche 918 vehicles manufactured between May 7, 2014 and June 18, 2014 due to, “rear-axle control arms that may break, causing difficulty controlling the vehicle.”
Later that year, on December 23, 2014, another recall was issued for all Porsche 918 vehicles that were manufactured from February 25, 2014 to September 18, 2014 as the, “front lower control arms may fracture.” The NHTSA stated that, “fracture of a lower control arm while the vehicle is being driven increases the risk of a crash.” Remedy parts are not expected to be available until the end of February, 2015.
On June 1, 2015 a third recall was issued for the car due to fact that, “the wiring harness for the left rear radiator fan may contact an engine heat insulation plate.” The consequence of this being, “If the harness contacts the insulation plate, the harness may chafe and result in an electrical short which could increase the risk of a fire.” Porsche has requested that owners leave the car parked outside until the remedy is implemented.
Sales and production
The production version was unveiled at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show. The 2014 model year 918 Spyder was produced in a limited series and it was developed in Weissach and assembled in Zuffenhausen. Porsche manufactured 918 units as a 2014 model year and production started on November 18, 2013, with deliveries scheduled to begin in December 2013. Sales in the United States began in June 2014. Pricing for the 918 Spyder started at US$845,000 (~ €611,000 or £511,000). According to its battery size, the 918 Spyder was eligible to a federal tax credit of up to US$3,667.
As of November 2014, over 800 units had been ordered worldwide, with planned production sold out through late March or early April 2015. Production ended in June 2015 as scheduled. The entire production was sold out in December 2014. The country with the most orders is the United States with 297 units, followed by China and Germany with approximately 100 orders each.
According to JATO Dynamics, a total of 105 units have been registered worldwide during the first nine months of 2014. The United States is the leading market with 202 units delivered up to May 2015. As of October 2014, a total of 9 units were registered in Switzerland, 6 in the Netherlands, 5 units in Canada, and 4 in Sweden.
At the 2011 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Porsche unveiled the RSR racing variant of the 918 Spyder. Instead of using plug-in hybrid technology, power for the two electric motors is provided by a flywheel accumulator KERS system that sits beside the driver in the passenger compartment. The V8 is a further development of the direct injection engine from the RS Spyder race car developing 563 horsepower (420 kW). The electric motors each provide an additional 102 horsepower (76 kW), giving a peak power output of 767 horsepower (572 kW). The six speed gearbox is a development of the unit from the RS Spyder.
Nürburgring lap time record
In September 2013 a 918 fitted with the optional ‘Weissach Package’ set a Nürburgring lap time of 6:57 on the 12.8 mi (20.6 km) road course, reducing the previous record by 14 seconds, and making it the first series production street-legal car to break the 7 minute barrier.
On October 4, 2015 a Porsche 918 taking part in the Paqpaqli għall-Istrina charity motorshow in Malta lost control, left the track and crashed into a section of the spectators. The incident happened at about 14:00 on Park 4 of the Malta International Airport in Ħal Farruġ. According to reports, 28 spectators were injured, with 5 of them suffering from critical injuries.