Porsche 918 Spyder - 2015
n° 215 of 918
Chassis n° WP0ZZZ91ZFS800215
Estimated : CHF 950.000 - 1.200.000
Sold for CHF 1.552.500 - € 1.408.163
The Bonmont Sale
Collectors' Motor Cars - Bonhams
Golf & Country Club de Bonmont
Switzerland - Suisse - Schweiz
"The art of understatement is evidently not lost on the good people of Porsche. Quietly under-promising and then spectacularly over-delivering is a surefire way to produce very satisfied customers. Always has been; always will be. It has worked a charm for Stuttgart's sports car specialist for decades and continues to with the (whisper it) incredible 918 Spyder.
"Here is a car with hybrid-carbonfibre construction, a combustion engine and suspension set-up donated by a prototype racing car, and a petrol-electric 'plug-in' powertrain the likes of which the world has never seen." – Autocar.
Nowadays, in these increasingly environmentally-conscious times, even supercar manufacturers are expected to make at least a cursory nod in the direction of better fuel economy and reduced emissions; hence the arrival of 'hybrid' technology in this previously exclusively fossil-fuels-only sector of the market. This has had the effect of endowing the modern supercar with some green credentials, while at the same time bringing with it a welcome performance boost in the shape of an additional (electric) motor or motors.
In the 918 Spyder's case, Porsche combined a normally aspirated 4.6-litre race-derived V8 engine producing 599bhp with two electric motors - one for each axle -delivering an additional 282 horsepower. The energy storage system is a 6.8kWh liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery positioned behind the passenger compartment. In addition to charging from the mains electricity supply, the battery is also charged by a regenerative braking system while the car is on the move.
The 918 Spyder was first shown as a concept car at the Geneva Motor Show in March 2010, the resulting avalanche of enquiries convincing Porsche's management that it should be approved for production. The production version was duly unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September 2013, and despite a starting price tag of €611,000, all of the 918 units planned has been sold by December 2014. Production ceased in June 2015 as planned.
Anyone with the slightest familiarity with the marque cannot fail to have noticed that the 918 Spyder's styling references many of the famous racing Porsches of the past. Its competition connections don't stop there, for the 918's suspension and engine are derived from those developed for Porsche's RS Spyder sports prototype of 2005. Suspension all round is by aluminium wishbones and links, with adaptive dampers as standard and the same rear-steer system first seen in the Porsche 911 Type 997 GT3. The bodywork is made of carbon fibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP) as are the two roof panels that easily unclip and are stowed in the under-bonnet cargo compartment to liberate the open-top driving experience; this is a Spyder, after all. Carbon fibre dominates the interior, with main controls grouped around the steering wheel and secondary systems accessed via two configurable colour touch screens.
Although the 918 Spyder could manage impressive economy when in all-electric mode, for most customers the car's stupendous speed was of far greater importance. Somewhat surprisingly, Porsche's performance claims were regularly bettered by independent testers. Reviewed by Car & Driver magazine, the 918 Spyder achieved a 0–60 mph (0–97 km/h) time of 2.2 seconds, a 0–100 mph (0–161 km/h) time of 4.9 seconds, a 0–180 mph (0–290 km/h) time of 17.5 seconds and raced through the standing quarter-mile in 9.8 seconds.
"The 918's in-gear performance is unrivalled," declared Autocar. "What's so astonishing is not just the pace but also the flexibility afforded by its rampant electric motors' instant torque." Despite the weight penalty of its larger battery, the 918 Spyder matched the rival McLaren P1 through the gears. Reassuringly, it was found to ride, steer and - mostly - handle just like a 'normal' Porsche.
Finished in yellow with black interior, the car was offer is number '251' of the 918 made. It has covered a mere 582 kilometres from new and remains in excellent, effectively 'as new' condition. The 918 is sold with its car cover and charger but there are no books available. The factory recall regarding the rear shock absorbers will have been attended to by time of sale, but the successful buyer will have to return the car to Porsche for its mandatory general servicing.