• Feb 10th 2010 at 9:38PM
  • 40
Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid – Click above for high-res image gallery

In an interesting about-face, Porsche has revealed the first images and details on its new racer, the 911 GT3 R Hybrid.

Based on the rear-drive 911 GT3 R that's set to take to the track in privateer hands later this year, the GT3 R Hybrid utilizes a rear-mounted, 480-hp 4.0-liter flat-six in conjunction with two electric motors that drive the front wheels. Residing in the space normally reserved for the passenger seat sits a flywheel, which harnesses kinetic energy under braking and can spin upwards of 40,000 rpm. Once enough energy is stored, the system lets loose up to 120 kilowatts – approximately 160 horsepower – to the front wheels in six to eight second bursts that are controlled by a steering wheel-mounted button.

Porsche apparently hasn't released official performance specs, but the GT3 R Hybrid's world debut will take place at the Geneva Motor Show before it hits the track for its motorsports debut at the Nürburgring 24 Hours on May 15. Devised as a rolling "racing laboratory," after the Hybrid takes to the Green Hell this year, Porsche plans to assault the 24 Hours of LeMans in a refined version in 2012, just as the sanctioning body begins to favor hybrids. Now about that "no hybrids" thing...

Show full PR text
Hybrid Porsche 911 GT3 R to make world debut in Geneva
  • Innovative hybrid drive unveiled at Geneva Show prior to racing at the Nurburgring in May
  • Development of 911 GT3 racer serves as a spearhead for technology and 'racing laboratory'
  • Showcase for Porsche Intelligent Performance philosophy
  • A Porsche 911 GT3 R with innovative hybrid drive will be unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show in March, taking the evolution of the iconic sports coupe to new levels in motor sport and opening a new chapter in an illustrious racing record that has witnessed more than 20,000 victories in 45 years.
After its debut in Switzerland, the 911 GT3 R Hybrid will be tested in long-distance races around the Nürburgring, Germany. The highlight of this test programme will be the 24 Hours race around the 14-mile Nürburgring Nordschleife circuit on 15/16 May. However, the focus is not on the 911 GT3 R Hybrid winning the race but rather serving as a spearhead for the technology and a 'racing laboratory' that will provide invaluable knowledge and insight on the subsequent use of hybrid technology in road-going Porsche sports cars.

110 years since Ferdinand Porsche – the company's founder - developed the world's first car with hybrid drive, the Lohner Porsche Semper Vivus, it is entirely appropriate that Porsche is once again employing this visionary drive concept in a production car-based GT racing programme.

The 911 GT3 R Hybrid
The hybrid technology featured in the 911 GT3 R Hybrid has been developed especially for racing, and is set apart from conventional hybrid systems in its configuration and choice of components. Uniquely, an electrical front axle drive with two electric motors each developing 60 kW supplements the familiar 480 hp (353 kW) four-litre flat-six 'boxer' petrol engine at the rear of the 911 GT3 R Hybrid. Consequently, the 911 GT3 R Hybrid has four driven wheels, offering even greater traction and agility.

A further significant point is that instead of the usual batteries of a conventional hybrid-powered road car, this 911 features an electric flywheel power generator – mounted inside the cockpit beside the driver – that delivers energy to the electric motors on the front axle.

The flywheel generator itself is an electric motor - with its rotor capable of spinning at speeds of up to 40,000 rpm - and stores energy mechanically as rotation, or kinetic, energy. The flywheel generator is charged-up whenever the driver applies the brakes, with the two electric motors reversing their function on the front axle and acting themselves as generators.

The driver is able to call upon this extra energy from the charged flywheel generator at his command for competitive advantage, such as when accelerating out of a bend or overtaking. The flywheel generator is slowed down electromagnetically in the generator mode and able to supply up to 120 kW to the two electric motors at the front axle from its resource of kinetic energy. This additional power is available to the driver after each charge process for approximately 6 - 8 seconds.

Energy formerly converted into heat, and thus wasted, upon every application of the brakes is now converted highly efficiently into additional drive power.

Depending on racing conditions, hybrid drive is used in this case not only for extra power, but also to save fuel. This again increases the efficiency and, accordingly, the performance of the 911 GT3 R Hybrid, by reducing the weight of the fuel tank or making pit stops less frequent, for example.

Porsche Intelligent Performance
The 911 GT3 R Hybrid is a perfect example of the Porsche Intelligent Performance philosophy, a principle to be found in every Porsche and defined as more power on less fuel, more efficiency and lower CO2 emissions – on the race track and on the road. Already, customers can buy a Porsche 911 coupe with a six-cylinder 345 bhp engine which can return nearly 30mpg Combined and produces just 225 g/km CO2; a feat unrivalled in its performance class and just one example of the application of Porsche Intelligent Performance to maintain outstanding driving dynamics yet lower running costs and environmental impact.

Devising smart, individual engineering solutions to combine performance and efficiency with everyday usability is something for which Porsche is renowned, and is evident in such developments as lightweight body construction methods, Porsche Ceramic Composite Brakes (PCCB) and the Porsche Doppelkupplungsgetreibe (PDK) double-clutch gearbox.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      Sounds more like a NOS replracement/alternative since its only used in short burts
      • 5 Years Ago
      porsche have drop the pants and sold out jajaja
        • 5 Years Ago
        how is more power on demand selling out ?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Wow, they surrendered to the Greenpeace eco-thug crowd faster than Lamborghini did. Sad.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The leistungselektronik's connected to the; portalachse mit zwei elektromaschinen,

      The portalachse mit zwei elecktromaschinen's connected to the; hochvoltkabel,

      The hotchvoltkabel's connected to the; elektrischer schwungradspeicher,

      The elektrischer schwundgradspeicher's connected to the; liestungselektronik...
        • 5 Years Ago
        I see what you did there. ;-)
      • 5 Years Ago
      I'd love to know the total weight added to the vehicle... if this thing adds an extra 300-400 lbs, then what is the point? destroying handling, and even mpgs seeing as how this is not a "sustainable" electric solution.

      I'm all for new tech - I'm just really not feeling this at all.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @ Jeff Johnson , NASA uses this technology because it's efficient, but maybe they should stop using it because you're just not feeling this at all ;)
        • 5 Years Ago
        Jeff Johnson exactly, Porsche sure didn't do any testing of the system and it will kill handling, reduce mpgs, and performance. Thank the Lord we have bright minds like you to point this out.

        • 5 Years Ago
        Hopefully it's not TOO heavy..I mean, a light flywheel spinning REALLY fast has the same energy as a heavy flywheel spinning slower...so maybe that 40000 rpm means it's not that heavy..

        Although one flywheel based KERS system that was in research for F1 had it spinning 100000 rpm+!! which sounds impressive...but then a turbocharger will spin that fast too...
        • 5 Years Ago
        Well, it may not destroy handling. The Panamera is heavy, and handles great. The GT-R handles really well, and is a pig. So it won't necessarily destroy it. I guess we'll see when raceday comes.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Perfect for the lag in up-shifts.
        • 5 Years Ago
        All these cars get no-lift upshift from the factory, so there is very very little lag. A buddy of mine just drove one at Daytona and said it was amazing.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Looks cool, I hope they gain valuable knowledge with this and a Cayenne Hybrid.
      • 5 Years Ago
      That ain't no hybrid at all... It's similar to the KERS system used in Formula 1.
      I'm not unhappy though, it's still a nice upgrade. Just don't expect better MPG from that.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Technically hybrid just means more than one power source, so yes, it is still a hybrid. And it's better MPG than if the engine were providing that power. But yeah, you're still basically right. It's not really an environmental-minded kinda hybrid.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I think it's a "hybrid" in the sense of adding performance, not for the mileage or being "green." Just like KERS, you're right.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I agree that 'hybrid' is now a functionally obsolete term with all the variations.

        All I know is that this... whatever you call it... if it works, is going to be effing fast when that button is pressed.
        • 5 Years Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      Everytime someone says hybrid I cringe. I need to remind myself that hybrid just means an electrical system augmented to a mechanical one, in this case to distribute power better.AND THEN I feel better.
      • 5 Years Ago
      It seems like people are hearing the word "hybrid" and thinking about the Prius. Keep thinking that folks. Apparently you have never heard of KERS lol. Why are you even on this site?

      Maybe we should have a 3rd Autoblog called ignorant baby autoblog where the articles are only 3 sentences long or less and have a bunch of pictures. Because it seems like people who make stupid comments on here just don't read the articles and then make stupid ignorant comments that reflects their lack of true interest in what's being presented.

      • 5 Years Ago
      Am I the only one who wouldn't want to be sitting next to a flywheel going 40,000rpm in a crash? I just wonder about how heavy that thing would have to be. Wonder if it would make a noticeable gyroscope effect that would change the handling?
        • 5 Years Ago
        as long as the 40k RPMs are not related to something with cogs (but rather with continuous edge) I think there are many way more dangerous things in a sports car
        • 5 Years Ago
        Having two flywheels in opposite rotation will not cancel the effects out. It will cancel out precession, but it will double resistance to changes in orientation.

        The primary fix for resistance to changes in orientation would be to mount the flywheel so the axis is vertical, then it doesn't have any resistance to yaw, which is what steering left and right is. It will will resist pitch and roll, which aren't as big a deal.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I refuse to believe that isn't a Flux Capacitor in the passenger seat.
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