Quick trivia question: what automaker was the first to build a hybrid? Did you guess Honda or Toyota? Interestingly, a full 109 years ago, Professor Ferdinand Porsche built a fully functional hybrid automobile, though it was certainly a much different animal compared to the Prius and Insight hatchbacks of 2010. In any case, Porsche is looking to enter the hybrid and electric automobile market in a big way just as soon as battery technology will allow it.
Porsche's opening salvo in the eco-wars will be the full hybrid Cayenne and Panamera models, probably in late 2010 as 2011 models, but there's more to come. Speaking at a press conference at the Frankfurt Motor Show, Michael Macht, Porsche's recently-appointed president and CEO, says:
Recent spy photos indicate that Porsche may already be well into the development phase of its electric 911 program, so this news doesn't exactly come as a shock. Still, while Porsche is just talking about eco-friendly sportscars in press releases at Frankfurt, rivals Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz are busy showing off their own factory concepts. Click past the break for the official press release.