Here's how Porsche makes the world's most advanced hybrid

Here's how Porsche makes the world's most advanced hybrid

The 918 Spyder, when it finally gets built, will be like no other hybrid on the road. Here's some gorgeous manufacturing porn that brings the amazing process to life. Seriously, it's almost magical.

2
18
Original post by GFWilliamsPhotographer on Jalopnik

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

The Porsche 918 Spyder is like no other hybrid on the road, promising Bugatti-like performance in a package capable of better fuel economy than a Toyota Prius. Here's an exclusive look at how they build their 887-horsepower, $800,000 flagship plug-in hybrid hypercar.

When I asked if we could visit the Porsche Factory we didn't even realize that production had started on the 918 Spyder so I got a rather nice surprise when the chap showing us around suddenly seemed a bit excited when he asked us "Would you like to see the 918 production?"

You all loved the McLaren factory tour so much I thought you'd enjoy seeing this, so I enthusiastically replied "I'd love to!"

Manufaktur 918 Spyder

The 918 Spyder is a hand-crafted car and the production team who build it are hand-picked from the best production staff Porsche employs. Each part of the interior is made of super lightweight materials that are then covered in lovely leather by the man you see below.

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

Every 918 Spyder starts life as a carbon fiber tub that's then built up.

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

This is what the 4.6L V8 head looks like before any other parts get added.

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

Further along the production line we find an engine looking much more complete with the differential and electronics connected.

The exhaust which comes out of the engine lid is an absolute work of art

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

Further on from the engine being completed we find the chassis it's to be attached to being prepared for the "marriage" (this is what the Porsche people call it) of the engine and chassis.

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

The interior is starting to look a lot more complete in this car.

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

We were surprised to see the key is the same as a 991 911, we hope the 918 owners don't get confused!

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

The next 918 is actually starting to look like a car with the engine all in, brakes and suspension attached on the front and back.

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

Any self-confessed car geek should get a buzz looking at this, so many nice mechanical bits! The quality of the work really is impressive on this car when you look in close. It's a shame most people will never get to see a 918 up close like this.

Seeing the car with the bodywork off really makes you appreciate the attention to detail that Porsche go into when engineering a car.

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

This is the underside of the car; You can see orange of the Hybrid system to give you an idea of where the modules are. Of course, it's all as low as possible which makes the car handle so well.

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

Porsche makes use of jigs to make sure everything aligns perfectly. Brakes are rather large, too, and all are green to signify the car is a Porsche Hybrid.

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

The next stage on the production line has some wheels and it's starting to look like a car, of course without any bodywork. The bodywork is all attached to the chassis of the car after this stage which means that the bodywork can all be super lightweight carbon fiber. The Carrera GT worked the same way.

The next step on the production line is quite a big step, it's a complete 918 Spyder! Of course it's not 100% complete, it needs programming, checking and testing before it'll be ready

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

The exhaust is like nothing I've ever seen on any other car, and this photo also shows what the car looks like with the spoiler down.

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

After the programming has been done, they then drive the car on electric power back into a "Top Secret" zone. Luckily, we got to oggle and photograph this complete car before it drove off into the lift

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

We caught this 918 just as the lift was closing. It's awesome!

How Porsche Makes The World's Most Advanced Hybrid

Big thanks to Porsche for showing us around, what an impressive car and experience.

Photography and Story by GFWilliams

18