Self-reported times on the Burgerkingring have long been the accepted currency of keyboard-racing morons, which has led to an increasingly bizarre series of manufacturer-sponsored “assaults” on the track. Real racers know how worthless the times are, but real self-funded racers only come in two categories: broke-ass dudes running a Neon ACR (yo!) and zillionaires racing Daytona Prototype. The two groups combined buy supercars at approximately the rate of two teenagers in Dubai — and teenagers in Dubai do care about Ring times.
Thus, we see that Porsche is now reporting a 6:57 for its hybrid supercar. This breaks the six-minute mark for self-reported times of factory-prepared “production” cars, ending a very long time where the fastest times were in the sevens. To see how it was done, click the jump.
In order to perform a full-lap test without exhausting the 918′s hybrid system on the first lap, Porsche’s elected to time from a different spot on the course than the traditional start/finish line. That doesn’t really matter, but it brings up the first cavil: perhaps a Viper ACR would run 7:24 in the lap after its famous 7:22, but would a KERS-depleted 918 break the seven-second mark in lap two? Don’t bet on it.
In the interest of not being killed, Marc Lieb doesn’t run the Fuchsrohre flat. I had no trouble doing it when I drove the Ring, but then again I was driving an SLK200, which accelerates at about half the rate of the porky Prius-esque Porker. It’s impossible to not be impressed by the 918 throughout the video: it’s fast, it grips like hell won’t have it, it doesn’t roll or pitch. It appears to be easier to drive than either the ZR1 or the Viper ACR, although some of that might just be Porsche’s choice of pilot.
My usual animosity towards the Stuttgart firm in its present configuration aside, I have to smile when I watch the video, because finally Porsche has managed to make the ‘Ring-time idiocy work in its favor. Nissan and GM might have seriously gamed the system with boost pressure and/or rollcage stiffening before, but the 918 crosses the start line with two hundred and seventy-nine extra horsepower from its charged-up hybrid system. Brilliant. Until Nissan makes the GT-R a hybrid, they’ll have no answer for this.
If the PR people at the other automakers are smart, they’ll start talking about “second lap” time. The Viper ACR, which can be purchased used for one-tenth the cost of a new 918, will surely snap at the hybrid’s heels in Lap Two, as would the various Radical and Donkervoort track specials. For the moment, however, by the ridiculous standards accepted in this business, Porsche is King Of The Ring. Hoo-rah.