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2019 Porsche 911 Prototypes Hit Nurburgring, PDK Shifts Sound Ridiculously Quick

As Armin van Buuren once told us, "Some times/The sound of goodbye/Is louder than any drumbeat," - listening to the Nurburgring-assaulting 2019 Porsche 911 prototypes pulling away from our spotters' cameras reveals more than any other way of assessing the test cars. We're talking about the PDK gearshifts we can hear from the distance, which seem to be absurdly swift.
2019 Porsche 911 testing on Nurburgring 7 photos
2019 Porsche 911 prototype on Nurburgring2019 Porsche 911 prototype on Nurburgring2019 Porsche 911 prototype on Nurburgring2019 Porsche 911 prototype on Nurburgring2019 Porsche 911 prototype on Nurburgring2019 Porsche 911 prototype on Nurburgring
The current PDK dual-clutch tranny, which features various implementations for the rich 991 line-up, is one of the best in the business, so we expected Zuffenhausen engineers to dial things up for the next generation of the Neunelfer. Even so, the think-about-it-and-you'll-miss-it aural side of the shifts delivered by these prototypes is amazing.

We can only imagine the kind of Green Hell lap times delivered by the 992 Neunelfers that pack such tech wizardry. And it's enough to notice how quickly the rear-engined testers downshift, or pivot into a corner via torque vectoring, to build sky-high expectations for their chronograph performance.

Of course, the generation change will also bring improvements on the efficiency front and this is an area that leaves us with some important unanswered questions.

For instance, Porsche recently let it slip that the plug-in hybrid version(s) of the next 911 was killed off. August Achleitner, who leads the development of the 718 and 911 model lines, told Car and Driver that the project didn't meet the standards of the 911 line-up. One of the greatest issues was the scale footprint of the car, which was "several hundred pounds" chunkier than the internal combustion-only models.

Porsche could still introduce a 911 PHEV with the mid-cycle revamp of the model, but we'll have to wait for the Mission E, the automaker's first EV, to enter the market (the electric four-door will land by the end of the decade).

And we're extremely curious to see how Porsche boosts the average 911 range efficiency while keeping the hardcore spirit of the rear-engined machine alive.

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