Porsche 918 Does Nordschleife In 07:14 - Film At 9/28

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt

Nordschleife-enthusiasts, head for your lists. Still a year away from its official launch, the Porsche 918 Spyder rounded the Nürburgring Nordschleife in 07:14 minutes. Not bad for a plug-in hybrid. The timing however, could have been a bit more high-tech.

According to Porsche, “the lap time of the Porsche 918 Spyder prototype is one of the best ever clocked for street-legal vehicles with standard production tires. The course was only available to the development team from Weissach for one lap, and it had to be started from a standstill. The plug-in hybrid super sports car with over 795 hp was equipped with production tires from development partner Michelin as well as the optional “Weissach” package, which integrates modifications that boost driving performance.”

These lines appear to be written with at least a sideway glance at Wikipedia, where the List of Nürburgring Nordschleife lap times is being kept. The list demands that OEM tires are being used, and that a video is submitted. At the time of this typing, the 918 had not been added.

We asked Porsche about the video, and one was promised for September. With the lap time of the Lexus LFA standing at 7:14:64, we also inquired about the exact time. Porsche spokesman Holger Eckhardt says the 7:14 was “timed by hand, therefore, we only publish an approximation, generously rounded up.” With such inexact and ungerman readings, a place on the list might be a bit shaky – until the proper timing gear arrives.

Currently, the fastest street-legal production car around the Nordschleife is the Dodge Viper ACR (some claim it wasn’t street legal) with 7:12:13, followed by the Lexus LFA. Unless, of course, you believe that a car that needs a 45 minute start up procedure involving a laptop plugged into the ECU, and that needs an engine rebuild every 30 hours is a production car. In that case, the Radical SR8 (which would not get a license plate in Germany) is the top car.

PS: Some blogs that use other blogs to blog claim that veteran race driver Walter Röhrl (65) was behind the wheel of the ring-rounding 918. Not true, says Holger Eckhardt, “it wasn’t Walter Röhrl, it was a test driver.” The man in the picture isn’t Walter Röhrl either. It is Dr. Frank Walliser, project chief of the 918, and a proud man.

Bertel Schmitt
Bertel Schmitt

Bertel Schmitt comes back to journalism after taking a 35 year break in advertising and marketing. He ran and owned advertising agencies in Duesseldorf, Germany, and New York City. Volkswagen A.G. was Bertel's most important corporate account. Schmitt's advertising and marketing career touched many corners of the industry with a special focus on automotive products and services. Since 2004, he lives in Japan and China with his wife <a href="http://www.tomokoandbertel.com"> Tomoko </a>. Bertel Schmitt is a founding board member of the <a href="http://www.offshoresuperseries.com"> Offshore Super Series </a>, an American offshore powerboat racing organization. He is co-owner of the racing team Typhoon.

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  • W.Minter W.Minter on Sep 21, 2012

    "and it had to be started from a standstill" translates into: "and it had to be started from a standstill because that's the only way we can use the electric boost. The time for a flying lap is so bad we well never tell it anyone."

  • Stuki Stuki on Sep 21, 2012

    Tesla needs to go there and show those Krauts what some good ole Silicon Valley hooplah can do. Withe their newest battery packs, they may even have the range to go all the way around.

  • Dr Mindbender I like the look of the new little hot hatch GV they showed in Orange...it will be interesting to see if they start making larger hybrid drivetrains on their own or find a partner. I looked at Teslas in 2018...EVs don't meet my needs until solid state and prolific recharge in the open desert of SW USA is a reality. Even Porsche expanded their hybrid tech to the flagship, and Kia is all about aping Porsche, perhaps we'll see a T-hybrid in the Genesis lineup???? I always wondered when using a battery to pre-spin a turbocharger would actually work. In general tho, I find the Genesis design language to be quite awful, but I also think the Cayenne is a thing of magnificent beauty...so that balances out I guess. The focus on luxury over performance is where I think they go wrong...but again, Porsche...so I guess my lenses are quite tinted.
  • Slavuta So, Trump was hyperbolic... big deal.
  • Slavuta The question was, "does it make sense for Elon...?" I don't know why people jumped into conclusions in this comment section. My answer is this - if he does it, it makes sense to him. He knows better than any of us here. May be with his donations he can become an ambassador to an important state or secretary of energy, or chief of NASA. This is how America works. Donate $1m - ambassador to Poland, $3m - japan, $5M - Germany, etc. $20,000 could buy you Kenya or something
  • CanadaCraig We should be able to give comments a 'dislike' or 'thumbs down'. We're not 6 years old. I'm sure we cope if someone doesn't 'like' our comment.
  • Dartdude He knows that a Trump economy is a great opportunity to sell more cars (EV,ICE). Compare both terms and Trumps is the winner by a long shot.