By on September 10, 2013

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.

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47 Comments on “Speaking Of The 918…. 6:57...”


  • avatar
    LeMansteve

    My wife and I are shopping for her next car. We are looking at the 2011 CR-V and Santa Fe. It is a tough decision made harder because I have not been able to find the ‘ring times for these vehicles anywhere. Perhaps because they haven’t finished their first lap?

  • avatar
    LeMansteve

    “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.”

    To be fair, turbos and superchargers give plenty of extra horsepower, too.

  • avatar
    DeadWeight

    I’m so down with the idea of bombing the Nürburgring, as pit forth by James May.

    It’s been so played out, gamed, and telemarketer that it’s now just cheesy.

  • avatar
    juicy sushi

    Apparently both Porsche and McLaren have been spending considerable time on this thing (the sub-7 minute lap), and according to someone at McLaren, they won’t even mention that they were even there unless they can show such a time. Porsche have fired first, but given how many times they were attempting it, it may have been very difficult to repeat. I will be very interested in seeing if McLaren can do it, and if they need to do the same adjusting of the reference points to suit the P1′s hybrid system. Ferrari apparently aren’t even trying it with LaFerrari. Methinks they don’t need the PR with their clientele.

  • avatar
    TheOtherLew

    6:57 breaks the seven-minute mark, not the six-minute mark.

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      Think of it like a drag racer.

      12.9 is “running twelves”

      • 0 avatar
        67dodgeman

        drag racing? Then technically a 12.999 is a twelve second car. Hell, a 13.5 on the track last month, but then I added cold-air intake last week is a twelve second car. A “I never timed it, but I beat my cousin’s trans-am” is a twelve second car. Drag slicks on a Yugo is a twelve second car.

        • 0 avatar
          juicy sushi

          Given how much variability in lap times there are at somewhere like the Nurburgring, yes, it kind of is like that.

        • 0 avatar
          APaGttH

          In drag racing lingo, a car that runs a 12.999 is a “12 second car,” Jack is spot on in his analogy. Or you might say, “it is in the 12′s.”

          • 0 avatar
            3Deuce27

            I started drag racing over 48 years ago and have never heard ’12 secondary’. Runs in the high 12′s Mid 12′s or low 12′s is the language used by drag racers. Broke into the 12′s, 11′s etc., is another way of saying how a vehicle just performed.

            If Jack had said ‘This breaks into the 6 minute range/bracket’ some of us would have had no problem with the comment. Or… Breaks into the elusive six minute bracket.

            We all know what he was trying to say, its just that some of us are anal retentive and enjoy cloaking our selves with a superior air, looking for any misstep to prove our superiority. Stay away from us, we enjoy punishing those we feel… aren’t worthy. COL!

            Now where is that 1/4″, inch pound torque wrench?

      • 0 avatar
        3Deuce27

        Sorry, Jack, I’m with ‘TheotherLew’. Marks come at 1 – 2- 3- 4-5-6-7-etc. You break into the 12′s then run 12′s. until you don’t.

        Probably an issue of formal semantics regarding logical aspects of meaning, such as reference, implication, and logical form. So, you are probably standing on a supportable position, regarding intended form.

        • 0 avatar
          Jack Baruth

          I’m willing to back off said position. There’s something charming about having a reader base that immediately gets upset about something like this :)

          • 0 avatar
            3Deuce27

            Pedantic bunch taking shots at the master.

            Charming, my ass… really, just a bunch of narrow minded, tight assed gear heads… col!

          • 0 avatar
            Skink

            Well, I’m not upset. It’s nice that you’re approachable.

            BTW, help me out on Porsche’s rationale for starting the 918′s run from a different point. Yes, better lap time, but what are the physics? One ends up at the same altitude regardless.

          • 0 avatar
            Jack Baruth

            Normally you’d enter the track at pit out, run around the track, and start at the start/finish line. But if they had done that they the battery wouldn’t have been charged. So you run out at pit exit with a full battery and start timing shortly after.

          • 0 avatar
            Skink

            Jack – Thanks for explaining the starting point idea for me.

    • 0 avatar
      Skink

      Also referred to as breaking the seven second mark elsewhere: “…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.”

      I think if you’re working your way from higher lap times to lower lap times, if you’ve achieved 6;57. then you’ve broken the seven minute mark en route to 6:57. Same goes for breaking the 13 minute mark if you’re able to run 12s at 12.9. Guy Bannister broke the four minute mile. And so on.

      • 0 avatar
        Skink

        meant to type, “…breaking the 13 second mark if you’re able to run 12s at 12.9″

        Conversely, cars at Bonneville break the 300mph mark, not the 400 mph mark, en route to speeds higher than 300.

  • avatar
    NMGOM

    Jack….

    I like the ‘Ring. Have driven it too, but back in 1968, “Flugplatz” really meant airport for launching the cars, not for the airplanes on the runway in the next field over.

    Yes, the whole ‘Ring mystique is getting blown way out of proportion. But because of this “gold standard” track, we all are getting higher performance sporty cars.

    And yes, it does trickle down: I was at the BMW dealer the other day, and a guy in the cubicle next to me was asking the salesman what the ‘Ring time was for the new sporty 6-series convertible! (of all things…)

    So, I expect that “halo” performance cars like this, and the McLaren P1 and LaFerrari, while only marginally profit-efftective by themselves, do serve the purpose of establishing credibility and reputation. After all, have GM or Ford made a production car that can beat 7 minutes on the ‘Ring? No, well, gee, in the thinking of some sport-car oriented consumers, that maybe means that their other products may not be very sports-car worthy either…. Naive? Yes. Does that thinking occur? Yes.

    ——————-

  • avatar

    Nice. Can I have mine in the Gulf colors? You know, like Steve Mcqueen’s Porsche 917 in the movie Le Mans. Btw, shouldn’t Detroit (TTAC) be worried about the periodic avalanche of new models coming from Germany? For instance, GM lovers have to do with the new Corvette and the big Caddie concept for months already. IMO very disturbing.

  • avatar
    carguy

    I was amazed to see that Walter Rohrl was listed as part of the three member driving team. At 66 years old, the force is strong with this one.

    • 0 avatar
      3Deuce27

      Hey! I’m 66 and I do a power slide or three, everyday, sometimes, before hitting the road.

      I have a deliberately twisty driveway of about 650 feet, and the corners are wide. The trees are cut back to a safe margin in the corners in case of F–k ups. Thinking of adding to the parking lot for skid pad testing and a little pylon/safety cone go-cart racing.

  • avatar
    sportyaccordy

    Something doesnt add up about that video. This is about as stupid of a reason as to think why, but I can barely break the 7:10s in cars that carry significantly higher corner speeds… in Forza 4 (cue the facepalm memes). And that’s flat out, everywhere, no BS… I am talking, 150MPH flat out through Quiddelbacher/Flugplatz, 200MPH flat out through Schwedenkreuz, so much downforce the car in question (F50 LM) tops out at 200MPH despite having 750HP. Look, it’s a videogame, I get that. But I just find it hard to believe a car with marginally more HP and nearly twice the weight can knock 20 seconds off of a dang good (simulated) Ring time. The guy admitted to not even going flat out. I could definitely see Porsche lying about this- and the best part is, it will be pretty much impossible to prove them wrong

    I dont think it’s fair to compare this to the GT-R. However, the 911 is a better car than the GT-R everywhere off the track, which actually matters for 99% of its customers…

    • 0 avatar
      See 7 up

      How does one go “flat-out” at both 200 mph, then go “flat-out” once again but at 150 mph? I’ve always taken “flat-out” to mean max speed.
      Regardless, who drives less than “flat-out” in a video game? Why would you drive at 8/10′s? What kind of boring is that?

      • 0 avatar
        sportyaccordy

        Flat out meaning WOT all the way through a corner.

        Never mind though. Forza 4′s ring track has been confirmed as too long. The real track is much tighter and shorter, hence the lower corner speeds. All this means is I need a PS3 as GT5 is more accurate…

      • 0 avatar
        rpn453

        Since I mastered the track on GT5 I’ve always found it easy to determine where a driver is on the track at any point of a real in-car video. It looks pretty much the same. I tried watching only the Forza view first on that video and it took me a little while to figure out what part of the track he was on. Everything looks flattened and elongated, and the details along the track edge are simpler. The track on the real video was instantly recognizable to me at any point.

        “Regardless, who drives less than “flat-out” in a video game? Why would you drive at 8/10′s? What kind of boring is that?”

        There are many high speed corners on the Nurburgring that you can do flat out in some cars/situations and not in others.

        I actually have driven 8/10s in GT5 for extended periods while trying to conserve tires during longer online races. I find tire strategy to be an interesting part of racing, and I have won a race or two against superior drivers by driving that way and pitting less. It’s not that easy to be delicate with your tires on a really fast race car, such as a Le Mans Prototype, and everything is still happening very quickly.

        Another reason one might drive slower is if they’re learning and/or practicing the track for a future trip to the Nurburgring. You’d be best to drive with the mentality that you cannot risk crashing to get in the proper mindset. My buddy did an hour or so almost every evening for a year leading up to that trip, on that track and nothing else, and he thinks it was worth it. There were two deaths during the two days he was driving it.

        It really is a simulation just as much as it is a game. I hadn’t owned any video games since the Sega Genesis before I bought a PS3 for the sole purpose of playing GT5. All three of my buddies who attended Bondurant with me also bought one within a year or two of that trip. The Logitech G27 wheel feels a little video-gamey at first, but when you get used to it after a few hours it seems very realistic. Just like a lot cars with electric power steering!

    • 0 avatar
      gpolak

      Don’t feel bad Forza 4′s ‘ring is too long: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=La4-BLdEIUo

  • avatar
    Snavehtrebor

    One time in the early ’80s, I played Centipede for two hours straight on one quarter.

    Wait, what were we talking about?

  • avatar

    Counterpoint in favor of using the Nurburgring as a benchmark: it’s better than 0-60, 1/4 miles plus lateral G, the standards previously used.

    It’s a track that’s got enough different segments that a car that’s fast there is probably a very fast car all around. i.e., it’s not too tight and twisty or open and straight. If it’s causing automakers to engineer their cars to be fast at the ‘Ring, it’s probably causing them to build good sports cars.

    So long as we’re not splitting hairs of <5s differences, knowing the other cars something can run with on the 'Ring makes a valid comparison. Unfortunately, that means you'll have to find a different internet straw man to pummel in every post ;).

    • 0 avatar
      See 7 up

      The ‘ring is a power track. A miata with about 225hp will be an amazing sports car, but it will be “slow” on this track. Heck an S600 will absolutely destroy most “sports cars” on this track, but that does not make the S600 a sports car nor very fun to drive – no, scratch that. a 2+ ton twin turbo v-12 4-door luxo barge will be fun to drive.

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      Nah, ring is a very power biased track. There are a good 3 or so segments where cars basically top out, and most of the “tight” turns are taken in 3rd or 4th. I think 0-100 is the best accelerative measure, braking from 60 is the best braking measure and grip is the best handling measure. Keep in mind, these are just measures and don’t tell anything about how a car drives. An S63 AMG on sticky tires can probably match an F430 in many performance metrics but they obviously don’t drive the same.

  • avatar
    stuntmonkey

    All of these companies running Ring times on their own, nobody with the guts to run against each other. What if there was “World Super Car” in the same way that Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki and Kawasaki race against each other in WSBK? Remember when Porsche actually raced as a factory on the track against other Marques?

  • avatar
    Davekaybsc

    Errmm.. a Radical SR8 LM would outrun this thing on lap ONE. Lap two? Fuggetaboutit. The Radical can chase down the Zonda R. It has no time for electric Porsches.

  • avatar
    el scotto

    Whaat? This many comments about the ‘Ring and none about Sabine Schmitt

  • avatar
    WheelMcCoy

    >> Burgerkingring

    Ha! That’s some drive-thru. But honestly, I can get thru my local BurgerKingring in 5:59 minutes and exit with a whopper and fries.

  • avatar
    raph

    I love watching cars run the ‘ring, but yeah, I hate how manufacturers game the runs. I wish there was sort of rule system in place with a 3rd party observer to prevent that but I suppose it would be a needless expenditure and will never happen.

    Thanks for screwing the pooch guys…


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