Hybrid-electric Porsche 911 GT3R to make North American debut

Porsche911 GT3R hybrid – Click above for high-res image gallery
On October 2nd, Porsche's tire-smoking 480-horsepower 911 GT3R hybrid monster will take to the track in hopes of beating the competition at Road Atlanta in this year's running of the Petit Le Mans (PLM). When the flag drops, the Porsche GT3R hybrid will make its North American racing debut and duke it out in the PLM's unclassified category. The 1,000-mile, 10-hour race will test the GT3R's on-track abilities and, more importantly, its unique hybrid propulsion system.

The car's propulsion system consists of two 60 kW electric motors that spin the front wheels and a 480-horsepower flat-six engine that tries like hell to send the rear tires up in smoke. During braking, the electric motors capture kinetic energy, store it in an electromechanical flywheel and release it automatically during cruising or on demand via a push of a button. The flywheel hybrid system allow the GT3R to run efficiently on the track while also reducing wear and tear on vital parts like brake pads.

Porsche factory driver Patrick Long describes the 911 GT3R's remarkable hybrid setup like this:

When you pull the paddle [gear lever] and you get the charge, it launches you back into the seat and you better be ready. Not only can we can brake later and harder, but we save on consumables like brake pads somewhere in the range of 70 to 80 percent. This could prove to be the deciding factor in grueling Le Mans races. No matter how fast your lap times are, if you spend time in the pits you are going to lose the race.

Kudos to Porsche for developing a remarkable hybrid race car and we wish 'em luck at Road Atlanta. The action gets underway this Saturday at 11:00 a.m. EST and Speed Network will broadcast live coverage of the event throughout the day.

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[Source: Energy Empowers]

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