Next-gen Porsche 911 to get plug-in hybrid drivetrain?

Next-gen Porsche 911 to get plug-in hybrid drivetrain?

Potentially putting an end to a long-standing rumor, Porsche has reportedly confirmed the next 911 will be offered with a gasoline-electric plug-in hybrid drivetrain for the first time ever.

At first, only the 911 Carrera 4 will be available as a hybrid. The drivetrain is still at the embryonic stage of development so precise technical details are few and far between but Dr. Frank-Stefan Walliser, the head of Porsche’s motorsport department, hinted it will consist of a naturally-aspirated flat-six engine out back and at least one electric motor up front.

That means the hybrid 911 will likely be rear-wheel drive in regular driving conditions, and the electric motor will zap the front wheels when additional power is needed, such as when coming out of a corner or passing. On paper, the drivetrain should bear more than a few resemblances with the one that powers the 918 Spyder.

Purists will howl, but Porsche predicts that buyers will ultimately embrace the technology because going hybrid will noticeably improve both fuel economy and performance.

“Most people believe hybrid is [Toyota] Prius. And slow and no fun to drive. Porsche is different. I love hybrids – if they are powerful,” said Walliser in an interview with Australian website Motoring.

If the report is accurate, the gasoline-electric Porsche 911 Carrera 4 will be introduced in either late 2018 or early 2019. Other models will follow, and Porsche predicts that every single member of its lineup regardless of size, power and price will be offered with a plug-in hybrid drivetrain in the not-too-distant future.

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