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Porsche 919 Street

Year: 2017 Development stage: 1:1 clay model

One of the fastest and most successful racing cars of the 21st century and the latest chapter of success in the great motorsport history of Porsche, the Porsche 919 Hybrid won the 24 Hours of Le Mans three times in succession - from 2015 to 2017. To cap this achievement, in 2018, racing driver Timo Bernhard lapped the Nürburgring Nordschleife in an Evo version of the Le Mans-winning car in just 5:19.55 minutes, which was a new lap record. After Porsche announced its departure from LMP1 racing, a new idea was born in Michael Mauer’s Weissach design team: namely crowning the success story with a limited special edition of the Porsche 919 Hybrid for the race track.

The Porsche 919 Street was developed on the basis of the existing technology, promising to make the exhilarating driving experience of the LMP1 race car available to amateur drivers. Under the outer shell are the carbon monocoque and powerful 900 PS hybrid racing drivetrain that helped the Porsche 919 to achieve victory at Le Mans. The dimensions and wheelbase were also the same as on the race car. For a short while, it looked like it might be possible to build a customer car without road approval as a limited edition. However, the high-performance racing technology was extraordinarily complex – a team of mechanics needed around 45 minutes just to start the LMP1 engine. It would have been necessary to send a team of “flying doctors” to race tracks all over the world. For the time being, the idea of a Le Mans winner for gentleman drivers therefore remains a beautiful dream.

Porsche 917 Living Legend

Year: 2013 Development stage: 1:1 clay model

Porsche has won the 24 Hours of Le Mans 19 times to date but the Porsche 917 KH in its Porsche Salzburg red-and-white livery occupies a very special place in the brand’s history. For it was at the wheel of this car that Hans Herrmann and Richard Attwood achieved Porsche's first overall victory at the Circuit de la Sarthe in the summer of 1970. In 2013, to mark the return of Porsche to the LMP1 class, the development team in Weissach developed a modern interpretation of the Porsche 917. A 1:1 industrial plasticine model was created in six months that was intended to bring the living legend into the present day.

“The design had to clearly show the association with the Porsche 917 – as a new super sports car with explicit historic reference points,” explains Michael Mauer. The Porsche 918 Spyder served as a technical basis for the drive and chassis architecture. However, the concept study very clearly evoked the winning car of 1970 with its dramatically flared wheel arches, its cockpit which extended well forward, its almost unending rear end and of course its red and white racing colours. Another design feature was also crucial for Michael Mauer: “From the Porsche 906 right up to the 918, you always had the feeling in Porsche’s super sports cars that you were practically sitting on the road between the high wheel arches. We wanted to further emphasise that.”

To mark the 50th anniversary of the Porsche 917, the super sports car vision was presented to the public for the first time in the Colours of Speed exhibition at the Porsche Museum in 2019.

Porsche 906 Living Legend

Year: 2005 Development stage: 1:1 hard model

Even if the design team develops the automobiles of the future in its free design projects, the brand history of Porsche is always still present as a source of inspiration. So it was that the Porsche 906 served as the model for the proportions and body design for this vision of a super sports car. This is shown, for example, by the red contrasting bonnet of its front end and by the layout of its headlights, which immediately bring to mind the legendary old racing car and its unforgettable outing in the 1966 Targa Florio. At the same time, the study plays with the possibilities of creating a stylistic association between light sources and air intakes.

“The design process for such visions is very free,” explains Michael Mauer. “It is not necessary to keep to pre-defined product identity characteristics. For example, the headlights were positioned in an air intake as a futuristic light source. When we were later developing an identity for our electric models, we took another look at these designs. The radical idea of simply integrating a light source in an opening instead of a glass cover seemed appropriate for us. We are now approaching this ideal.”

Another innovative idea was realising the body of the Porsche 906 Living Legend as two parts inserted in each other – with the gap between the elements as a ventilation duct for powerful engine mounted amidships. This is a key design feature for Michael Mauer. “Modern hypercars are greatly dependent on their aerodynamics and openings resulting from the enormous ventilation requirements.” At the rear, two steeply projecting vertical fins with red light strips ensure a dramatic look from the back too.

Porsche Vision E

Year: 2019 Development stage: 1:1 hard model

Formula E is probably the most innovative racing championship in the world at the moment. In it, the technology of the future is put to the test under high-performance conditions, taken to its limits, and then tuned for power, efficiency and sustainability. Porsche is facing up to this new challenge too, and has participated in the all-electric road races since 2019. The Porsche 99X Electric joins the long line of innovative racing cars that can be described as Made in Weissach. The independently developed drivetrain could also serve as a basis for future all-electric sports cars for the race track and road.

Porsche therefore seized upon the idea of further expanding the area of customer motorsport and the idea of offering private individuals a car for the race track that would come as close as possible to a modern Formula E racer in terms of performance and driving dynamics. The Porsche Vision E has therefore been designed as a radically lightweight, single-seater race car for the race track. With its central seat position and 800-volt technology, it would without doubt offer privateer drivers an otherwise unattainable driving experience.

Porsche Vision 918 RS

Year: 2019 Development stage: 1:1 hard model

The Porsche 918 Spyder is a sporting milestone in the brand’s history. It made its debut as a truly extraordinary show car in 2010, marking the start of the hybrid strategy as a technology carrier, while setting new standards for super sports cars with its full-carbon body and fully variable aerodynamics. It is still considered to be the benchmark even five years after the end of production. The Porsche 918 Spyder was also the first production sports car to lap the Nürburgring Nordschleife in under seven minutes.

But how could this unique success story be continued? In this project, the design team in Weissach concentrated on the idea of a super sports car that is at home both on the race track and the road – and created a fascinating new evolutionary stage of the Porsche 918. With enhanced drive and chassis technology and a dramatically designed, aerodynamically optimised body, the Porsche Vision 918 RS would be the ultimate version of the latest super sports car from Weissach.

Porsche Vision 920

Year: 2019 Development stage: 1:1 hard model

The boundaries between race track and road have always been fairly fluid at Porsche and the marque's great successes in the 24 Hours of Le Mans have also added to the charisma of the brand. Porsche has no fewer than 19 victories at the Circuit de la Sarthe – more than any other manufacturer. Most recently, Porsche achieved a hat trick of three overall victories in succession with the 919 race car between 2015 and 2017. Even after Porsche left LMP1 racing, Michael Mauer’s design team remained fascinated by the legend of Le Mans and experimented with race variations for customer sport and road use.

The Porsche Vision 920 was designed as a super sports car for the road or as a possible racing car for customer motorsport based on the LMP1 race cars. The designers were particularly interested in finding a way to combine the established Porsche design language with the highly functional, aesthetically impressive features of the prototype racers. The driver therefore sits in a central cockpit while the car's body floats just above the ground, with deep air ducts running through it. The red-and-white Porsche Vision 920 is without doubt one of the most extreme visions of a super sports car that has been developed in recent years in Weissach.