Porsche Promises 911 PHEV as Soon as 2018

Porsche has a plan to electrify its most recognizable model, the 911 sports car, with a plug-in hybrid drivetrain that could make it to market as soon as next year.

The automaker's CEO, Oliver Blume, revealed the plan in an interview published at the end of January in German newspaper Westfalen-Blatt, in which he also said Porsche is gearing up to invest $1.1 billion in tooling to build the Mission E electric car.

Porsche first floated the idea of a PHEV 911 in 2014, when former CEO Matthias Muller told the German media the next-generation 911 would get a hybrid drive system as a means of boosting performance, rather than focusing on reducing fuel consumption or CO2 emissions. That makes it a fair assumption the limited-run 918 Spyder was a testbed for the technology that will eventually turn the neunelfer into a gas-electric model. But while electrifying the sportster is a bid to boost performance, Blume said the car will go about 50 km on a full charge of its hybrid battery.

But in case you're worried Porsche's move to electrify its halo model means a move toward autonomous car technology, you need not worry: the focus of that same article was Blume's assertion the manufacturer would never build a self-driving car, despite the proliferation of such technology, and promises from other upscale German manufacturers to have autonomous vehicles ready to roll sometime in the next decade.

Performance goes electric 2/3/2017 8:17:13 PM