Coming up with a replacement for a reigning champion is never easy, which is why Porsche took their sweet time developing their new LMP1 racer, the 2017 Porsche 919 Hybrid. Unveiled at Monza this past weekend, the new Le Mans contender may not be a looker but it is a thorough improvement over the previous version.
The mission for 2017 Porsche 919 Hybrid is to win the Le Mans 24-hours race (June 17/18) as well as the FIA World Endurance Championship titles for Manufacturers and Drivers respectively for the third consecutive time. So you see why it is equipped with 900 horsepower and two brand-new aerodynamics packages. Well, the latter is actually to compensate for the new rules that slow the cars down in name of safety. So one package is for high speed track, the other for twisty ones where Downforce is the name of the game.
The hybrid propulsion system in the 2017 Porsche 919 Hybrid is a hugely important one because as we saw with the 918 it will underpin the hybrid drivetrains of future production models. It features a compact two-litre V4 combustion engine with 500 hp on the rear axle and a 400 hp electric motor on the front, and it boasts a braking energy recovery system on the front axle plus an exhaust energy recovery system on the rear. With such a system already at work on the race track, it is fair to say the future is safe for Porsche’s high performance road cars.
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