October 17, 2016 @ 06:57 PM

​A plug in hybrid and an off the shelf race car from Porsche

Porsche has taken the wraps off the Panamera 4 E-Hybrid and the 911 GT3 Cup race car at the Mondial de I'Automobile event in Paris last week.


You would think that Porsche is attempting to bring balance to the force by unveiling these two cars at the same time. These two machines clearly sit at opposite ends of the scale. One is a synonym for comfort, luxury and classy motoring while the other is a raw, no compromise track car. 

Surprisingly the 911 GT3 Cup is less complicated than the Plug In Panamera. Running the naturally aspirated 4.0-Litre engine, this single seat racer has only one mission and that is to chase lap records and preferably break them when it hits the world’s race tracks in 2017.

 The 911 GT3 Cup name has been around for three Porsche generations and takes the prize as the world's most produced GT racing car. Porsche's motorsport department has done well to establish Stuttgart's finest as a reliable performance race car. 

The GT3 Cup screams it too when you look at it with its aerodynamic aids, the glimpse of a racing roll cage from the side windows and of course, the massive GT wing at the back.  It's physically impossible to resist a car with a wing that huge. 

So the Panamera 4 E-Hybrid then. Chairman of the Porsche Executive Board, Oliver Blume says that their latest four-door saloon takes inspiration from the 918 Spyder and 919 Hybrid Racing car. If you've been living under a rock, the 918 Spyder is the track munching hybrid hypercar that makes the holy trinity with the McLaren P1 and LaFerrari. The 919 Hybrid Racing car is the racing car that Porsche deploys to take on the 24hours of Le Mans. 

Green supporters, it's time to get excited. The predecessor to the Panamera 4 E-Hybrid only had an electric range of 35km while this one has a more usable 50 kilometres. This is made possible by improved lithium-ion cells. CO2 emissions sit at 56g/km and fuel consumption is just 2.5l/100km. So the Panamera takes care of mother nature and your wallet. 

Sending power to all 4 wheels is a 2.9-Litre V6 biturbo engine and a 136bhp/400Nm electric motor. The entire system works exactly the same as the 918 Spyder. Total output of 462bhp and 700Nm is at your disposal with full electric power available the instant you get on the loud pedal. 

Just make sure you've got nothing in front of you before you bury it. I doubt the Panamera will have much trouble reaching its top speed of 278kph. 

With such an impressive system in a practical package, is the Panamera 4 E-Hybrid the ultimate four door saloon to own? 

Y.Dharmeswaran


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