Battery-operated lights on ice skates, electric lighting and an electric doorbell at home, the first ideas for his own electric bicycle – Prof. Dr.-Ing. h.c. Ferdinand Porsche was already focused on electricity and its possibilities early on in life. A fascination that drove him on from a young age, long before he revolutionised the automotive industry as an engineer.
2. Who invented it?
The world’s first hybrid vehicle was unveiled to the public on 14 April 1900 at the World Exposition in Paris by Ludwig Lohner and the young Ferdinand Porsche. While the Lohner-Porsche was ahead of its time, the vehicle still demonstrates the genius of its developer. 120 years later, the demand for alternative drive systems is more current than ever before - and the ambition of our engineers remains as strong as always.
3. Brought to the racetrack.
In 2010, Porsche began a new chapter in motorsport history. To do this, the 911 GT3 R Hybrid made use of the visionary drive concept of the ‘Mixte’ developed by Ferry Porsche. The 353kW (480hp) six-cylinder horizontally opposed engine in the rear was perfectly complemented by a front-axle drive with two electric motors that achieved up to 75kW (102hp). During braking operations, the electric units reversed their function and worked as generators. This allowed them to reclaim kinetic energy that would otherwise have been lost as heat, unused. Therefore, for the first time in motorsport, it was possible to say: he who brakes, wins.
The recuperated energy powered a mechanical flywheel energy storage system in the form of an additional electric motor that was located in the front passenger area. If the driver called up the energy stored there, the flywheel was braked electromagnetically in the generator mode. This meant that the two electric motors on the front axle received sufficient electricity to provide an additional power output of up to 150kW (204hp) for up to eight seconds, meaning the 911 GT3 R Hybrid temporarily changed into a four-wheel drive.
4. All good things come in threes.
Porsche is the first car manufacturer in the premium segment worldwide to introduce three plug-in hybrids to its product range: the PanameraTurbo S E-Hybrid, the Cayenne S E-Hybrid and the 918 Spyder.
5. It now belongs to Porsche.
In 2017, Porsche won the 24h of Le Mans for the third consecutive time with the 919 Hybrid – making its hat trick complete. This 19th overall victory on the racetrack is particularly special: whoever wins the most demanding race in the world three times in a row can keep the coveted challenge cup.
6. A common goal.
One of the main deciding factors for the breakthrough of E-mobility is infrastructure. By founding the joint venture IONITY, the BMW Group, Daimler AG, Ford Motor Company and the Volkswagen Group, along with Audi and Porsche, are paving the way for the construction of the most efficient fast charging station network for electric cars in Europe. By 2020, thousands of charging points will have been created, enabling fast, flexible charging.