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Before the McLaren P1 hybrid hypercar, there was the 1898 Porsche P1 electric car

Porsche unveiled last week a very special barn find indeed. It’s the world’s first Porsche – and it’s electric.

Called Porsche 2, but known as the P1 for short, the horse-drawn carriage-looking wood-wheeled unit was hand-built by Ferdinand Porsche in 1898. Powered by a three-horsepower electric motor, which could be over-boosted to five horsepower in a pinch, the car could do 35 km/h for three to six hours or for 80 kilometers.

“The vehicle speed was regulated via a 12-speed controller, which offered six forward gears, two reverse gears and four braking gears.”

So why are we just learning about this car now? After Porsche demonstrated his creation at the 1899 international motor vehicle exhibition in Berlin, the P1 was parking in a warehouse in 1902, never to be touched again.

That is, until now.

Recently rediscovered, the P1 will be making its way to the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart where it will hopefully reside for another 112 years.

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