Porsche have revealed that all future models will be available with hybrid-electric drive, including the 911. The company’s representative, Daniel Semmer, announced at the Panamera Hybrid technology workshop that a new hybrid module had been designed by Porsche and will be able to fit into all models.
The new unit combines an electric motor and clutches in one single unit and is part of Porsche’s new drive to radically cut down on fuel consumption when travelling at everyday speeds. The firm’s engineers will target the revolutions of the engine per kilometre and will bring this figure down through the use of stop/start technology, coasting with the engine off and running as a plug-in hybrid.
This first phase of technology will be sampled by the new plug-in Panamera, whilst the second phase, set to begin in 2016/17, will see Porsche’s models will harness the use of intelligent interaction with their surroundings. An element in achieving this will be the use of highly detailed road maps that can accurately measure inclines and the radius of an approaching corner.
Future cars will also be able to detect the best use of the car’s driving modes, for example whether the vehicle will benefit best from being in Electric, Hybrid, Charging-while-driving or Sports mode.
We won’t see the new Plug-in Panamera until the summer, but Porsche engineers have already revealed plans for the technology’s next generation, which will likely be seen on the next Panamera in 2016. The new system is set to be assimilated with a fresh rear/all-rear drive platform entitled MSB; something that will also be seen on future Bentley models, and it is expected that we could see the first ever hybrid Bentley in 2017 as a result.
This upcoming hybrid module will be both water and air-cooled and will be more powerful than the 94bhp hybrid-electric motor in the new Panamera and its battery will be bolstered by a more energy-dense battery pack, as well as lighter wiring produced from aluminium instead of copper.
Perhaps the most radical part of this technology is the charging system Porsche are developing to be installed in domestic garages which enables the driver to charge the car’s batteries just by being in proximity of the charger, thus removing the need for messy cables.
Purists who may see these developments as reining in performance as well as fuel consumption will be glad to know that Porsche plan to equip the new Panamera Plug-in with a 3.0-litre V6 supercharged engine. This, combined with the electric motor, will produce a potent 416bhp and 435lb ft of torque, resulting in a 0-62mph time of 5.5sec which aren’t bad numbers for a car weighing 2095kg dry.
About the author: Sam writes for SCCI Carte Carburanti, suppliers of the euroShell fuel card in Italy.