Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid — 2010 Geneva Auto Show
Scheduled to debut at the 2010 Geneva Auto Show, this is a derivative of the recently introduced 911 racer for customers, the 2010 Porsche 911 GT3 R. Michael Macht, Porsche’s new chairman, has promised that the company will soon return to the 24 Hours of Le Mans with a factory-supported racing car, and the Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid previews new hybrid technology that the company is developing for its new purpose-built racer.
The GT3 R Hybrid will be used as what the Porsche engineers describe as a “racing laboratory” to gather knowledge about hybrid drive under the pressure of a racing environment. At the same time it will also advance the German carmaker’s plans to introduce hybrid technology to selected road cars in its lineup. Indeed, a gasoline-electric hybrid was recently spied testing at the Porsche R&D facility at Weissach, near the company’s headquarters in Stuttgart, apparently part of a program dubbed “Porsche Intelligent Performance.”
In a departure from conventional battery-based electric systems used for hybrid drive by makers of both street cars and even racing cars, the Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid features a flywheel system. It gathers kinetic energy under braking to power two electric motors that are mounted in a single assembly connected to the front wheels. After each charge, the motors provide 6-8-second bursts of power.
The flywheel will spin as fast as 40,000 rpm. In the 911 GT3 R Hybrid, it’s mounted where the passenger seat ordinarily would be and connected to the electric assembly in the front by a high-voltage cable. Two electronic management modules oversee the complete hybrid system, and the electric motors are engaged by pressing a button mounted on the steering wheel.
The electric motors provide a burst of 120 kilowatts (161 horsepower) to the front wheels, supplementing the 911 GT3 R Hybrid’s 480-hp 4.0-liter flat-6 that powers the rear wheels. The benefit, according to Porsche, is quicker acceleration out of corners and during overtaking, and there are apparently unspecified fuel savings as well.
No official performance claims for the Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid have been made prior to its unveiling in Geneva, but Porsche has confirmed the new car will appear at the Nürburgring 24 Hours on May 15. Meanwhile, Porsche’s new purpose-built racing car with hybrid technology is expected to be prepared for the 2012 edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, when the race’s regulations will favor hybrid racing cars.
Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid
[Source: Inside Line]