Porsche has officially unveiled the new Porsche 918 RSR racer at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. This high-tech hybrid race car generates kinetic energy from braking to power short bursts of speed on the track. The 918 RSR uses a gasoline-powered V8 engine with 555 horsepower for the rear wheels and a pair of 101 horsepower electric motors on the front wheels. When this hybrid brakes, a flywheel spins at up to 36,000 RPMs to collect kinetic energy that is stored in an internal battery. As needed, the driver can use this stored electricity to power the front electric motors for up to 8 seconds at a time. The 918 RSR then leaps from 555 hp to 756 hp, gaining an advantage on straightaways and softer curves.
The Porsche 918 RSR will likely debut at the Nurburgring 24-hours race this summer, and a possible production version may be available to the public in the future. This 918 follows up a model shown last year, which led the Nurburgring race for 8 full hours. We’ll see if the new version, with its new hybrid technology, can continue to compete to the end of the race. This is an exciting technology in the world of racing, and we’re hoping it winds up in production vehicles soon enough.