• Jan 4th 2010 at 5:29PM
  • 13
Porsche 911 GT3 R – Click above for high-res image gallery

If a report from Autosport Japan is to be believed, Porsche could be readying a hybrid version of its 911 GT3 for this May's 24 Hours of Nürburgring race.

With a gas-electric Cayenne on the way next year and a Panamera hybrid in development, the rumor of a race-spec hybrid doesn't seem that far-fetched considering Porsche's proclivity for migrating it's racing knowhow from the track to the road (although it's a bit backwards in this application). Regardless, Porsche hasn't confirmed the hybrid's participation in the enduro yet, but rumors have been circulating that the automaker will use the knowledge it gleans from the 'Ring race to campaign a GT3 hybrid in the 2011 ALMS season, with a possible running at the 24 Hours of Le Mans the same year.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      The news of a Hybrid-Racing-Porsche is a little older and was published a week ago by the renowned german magazine "Focus". Even Le Mans could be an option... http://www.automobil-blog.de/2009/12/29/startet-porsche-mit-hybrid-technik-bei-den-24-stunden-klassikern-am-nurburgring-und-in-le-mans
      • 5 Years Ago
      They'll probably start with a solar powered cigarette lighter and in another 30 years they will have this hybrid thing licked.

      A gas-electric 911 with some sort of KERS could really shake it up as Audi did with satin's fuel, I look forward to seeing whether it can go the distance.
      • 5 Years Ago
      ahhh,at last some forward movement from this rehash specialist
        • 5 Years Ago
        You gotta start somewhere.
        And a clean sheet is a good place, but that is just the Californian in me.
        It may not be perfect at first, but if we dont try new things, no true innovation will ever occur.
        I guess it is safer to let the cowboys go out and figure out all the new stuff and take all the risk, and then come in later and slowly adopt the ideas.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @ lorenzo , Porsche made hybrid cars before the Japanese made any cars :


        German manufacturers sell the most of their cars in Europe. Europeans like diesels more than hybrids. Americans like hybrids , but there there was no point investing a lot of money just to sell a few more cars in the US , especially with the weak dollar. the batteries are getting better and cheaper so now hybrids are becoming commercially viable. like BMW, i'm sure Porsche's cars will be mild hybrids, too much weight would kill the handling and people who buy expensive hybrids don't really care about fuel prices, they buy them because it's trendy.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I can understand how it might be a little cautionary to add a lot of componentry to a car to redundantly supplement the existing drivetrain.

        I am critical of the benefits of hybrids, over the technical compromises and costs associated, especially when it comes to electrical storage batteries.

        Porsche has a history of sticking to it's guns, even when nobody else does things the same way Porsche does. Porsche sticks to boxer engines. Porsche sticks to modest displacement, and some use of turbochargers, instead of large displacement engines, such as GM and M-B. They stick to rear-engined chassis, and I can respect that, despite preferring their mid-engined efforts.

        Most european vendors have long favored diesel over hybrid, anyway. Porsche hasn't gone diesel in a big way, but they also are a relatively niche, performance vehicle vendor, not an economy builder.

        Porsche instead uses engineering to lighten and strengthen their products. The engines make more power out of the same displacement... that is power efficiency, rather than fuel efficiency, but it is still the effect of getting the most kinetic energy out, and minimizing wasted energy. PDK, variable vane turbos, and especially direct fuel injection have made progress on that front, just recently. More power, more flexibility, and more fuel efficiency, with at most a very small weight penalty.

        Certainly a lot smaller penalty than adding hundreds of pounds of batteries that don't have the range and flexibility of a refillable liquid fuel tank.

        Porsche doesn't make their reputation building things that are inherently limited, which one could say Tesla Roadster is. Even hybrids, rather than full electrics, have weight, balance, and other technical and economic costs to bear that don't further vehicle performance, and in some cases, hurt vehicle performance.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Funny, that a change in perspective generates different vocabulary.

        continual improvement.
        Not fixing what isn't broken.
        Sticking to what works.
        Careful evaluation and progressive engineering improvements.
        Adding only what applies new benefit beyond it's technical cost for net engineering gain.

        Funny how far Porsche has gone with a set of principles and parameters, while others continue to re-invent the wheel, just to be "different".

        Funny, but isn't that also what people who love GM V8s say about their 50+ year old engine platform, which has been developed to the point of ubiquity. I wonder if those happen to be the same people who criticize Porsche for their process of refinement...
        • 5 Years Ago
        Funny how it has taken almost all German car makers so long to embrace hybird and electric technology.
        Because it is a big investment, and not incrimental progress, and a leap of faith to some extent at this point in time.
        And when they do, it is something to just augment their precious piston powerplant, as little as possible.
        Except the E-Tron.......but they are a little late to the game with that.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @ lorenzo

        funny to read such comments of people knowing nothing about car history..

        first production and commercial sold modern hybrid vehicle... was german.. Audi A4 Dou production was stoped in 1998 because they had no selling success and they put all their money in TDI research and development... Audi was working on hybrid technology long befor Toyota and presented first fully working prototypes on car shows in the 1980´s.

        the first ever hybrid vehicle was build by Porsche in 1899 known as Lohner-Porsche ... young Porsche was at that time engineer for Lohner & Co and developt there the first ever petrol electric powered hybrid drive system. In 1900 they even raced with such a hybrid the Semmering race driven by Porsche himself.. next to the first hybrid ever Porsche also developt the first 4x4 hybrid.

        All electric vehicles are build and sold in europe in numbers long befor Tesla etc...


        have or still offer a wide range of all electric powered vehicles build into normal prodcution models..

        The Golf was avaible as full electric vehicle called Golf Citystromer in the MK II and MK III version. DKW (part of Audi) sold the DKW Elektrowagen a all electric transport based on the DKW Schnellaster (fast truck)
        Today one is on display in the Audi museum..


        thats the Audi 4 Duo the first ever modern hybrid that reached production status and was sold commercial.. and it was a diesel hybrid..


        the 1989 Audi 100 Duo hybrid shown at the 1989 IAA


      • 5 Years Ago
      If it saves a couple pitstops for gas, it can make a helluva difference inna race.

      Racing under the caution mileage advantage PLUS a kick from the electric for passing....

      Hmmm...sounds like something NASCAR could use...
      • 5 Years Ago
      Well, Porsche build the first Hybrid in the History of Automobiles, so i'd bet this one is gonna blow everyone's minds :)
        • 5 Years Ago
        I'll bet it's a mild hybrid system which is touted by the press to be far more important than it is in reality.

        • 5 Years Ago
        I can see this being an electrical assistant system to recover, store, and re-use kinetic energy to extend fuel range during a race, and minimizing time off of the pace.

        I can see this being a regenerative braking system, and a method for re-introducing that energy to the driveline.

        But if Porsche is doing it on the race track, it will very likely be well thought out, and hopefully more of a benefit than a cost, in terms of a compromise, and have a minimum of negative drawback in terms of complexity and weight gain.
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