Porsche Opens Up on Hybrid 911, Assures Us Flat-Sixes Are Here to Stay

Porsche 911 Turbo S 1 photo
Photo: Catalin Garmacea
It's enough to look at the 2015 Porsche 919 Hybrid that brought Zuffenausen the Le Mans victory in the second season after their LMP1 return to understand the automaker has hybrids and four-cylinder engines written in its future.
And while various incarnations of the Porsche spirit, such as the Mission E, which has been confirmed for production, may have already skipped the internal combustion engine altogether, the questions we desperately need answers to have to do with the 911 backbone.

Porsche has been open about the idea of an alternative-propulsion Neunelfer since 2009 and we all expect the next generation of the sportscar to pack at least a hybrid, if not an all-electric version, but the Detroit Auto Show shed some light on the matter.

Speaking to Auto Express, 911 product line director Dr. Erhard Mossle has explained the company is “discussing plug-in solutions for the 911, but there are a lot of things to solve with packaging in the car and other things to solve. It will maybe be in the next generation, yes.”

More importantly, Dr. Mossle spoke about the 911 retaining its flat-six tradition: “As far as I can see we will stick with six-cylinder engines because we have a good positioning with 911 and six cylinder and 718 [Boxster and Cayman] with four cylinders. Even the six cylinder engines have a lot of potential to reduce consumption and CO2 emissions.”

A rumor dating back to May 2014 talked about Porsche working to add electric power to the 911 Turbo and Panamera Turbo, with the resulting proposals set to show off their 700 hp potential in 2017.

Since we don't expect the next generation of the Neunelfer to arrive sooner than 2020, we'd add yet another grain of salt to that unofficial talk. Porsche has enough time to sort things out as the leading force behind the VW Group hybrids by then.

Nevertheless, Dr. Mossle's words on the general direction for the 911 are indeed calming: “When we see the 911 we see the plug-in hybrid as a performance car - it will always be for performance.

With Porsche always managing to land on its feet, we admit we have enough clues to be less than terrified at the prospect of the five-decade-plus Neunelfer recipe adding electron juice to the list of ingredients.
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About the author: Andrei Tutu
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In his quest to bring you the most impressive automotive creations, Andrei relies on learning as a superpower. There's quite a bit of room in the garage that is this aficionado's heart, so factory-condition classics and widebody contraptions with turbos poking through the hood can peacefully coexist.
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