Porsche 918 Spyder laps Nürburgring in 7:14, blows cover in leaked brochure

Porsche 918 Spyder Martini Racing liveryPorsche revealed some important information about its upcoming 918 Spyder hybrid supercar, but probably more than it wanted to. The company says this engineering marvel will lap Germany’s infamous Nürburgring in seven minutes and 14 seconds, but it also allowed the 918’s brochure to be leaked.

The Nürburgring is the benchmark for performance cars, so a fast time around the track known as the “Green Hell” comes with serious bragging rights. A 7:14 lap time not only makes the 918 Spyder the fastest hybrid at the ‘Ring, it also puts it just a few seconds behind the current record holder, the Gumpert Apollo Speed, which went around in 7:11.57.

The 918 also trounces conventional exotics like the Ferrari Enzo, Nissan GT-R, and Porsche’s last supercar, the V10-powered Carrera GT. Ah, progress.

The leaked brochure doesn’t offer many surprises; the production 918 Spyder appears virtually identical to the concept first shown at the 2010 Geneva Motor Show, right down to its thin-spoked wheels and green brake calipers.

The brochure does provide a first glimpse at the production 918’s interior. The cockpit echoes the Carrera GT’s, but it definitely shows that nearly a decade has gone by since that car first turned a wheel in anger.

The center console rises diagonally from the floor, meeting the top of the dashboard and bringing all of it controls within easy reach of the driver’s right hand. On the Carrera GT, this bit of sculpture was topped by a wooden-knobbed shifter, but on the 918 it seems to have been replaced with an elongated iPad.Porsche 918 Spyder interior

The individual gauges look very cool; it’s nice to see round dials instead of display screens on a new supercar. Per Porsche tradition (not that Ferrari doesn’t do this), the tachometer is in the center, with the speedometer on the left and fuel gauge and other diagnostics on the right.

Porsche did stick to current supercar fashion by covering the steering wheel with buttons. This will allow drivers to keep their hands on the wheel at all times (a good thing, considering the 918’s rumored 202 mph top speed), but will probably be confusing to operate. The giant red button appears to be for launching nuclear missiles.

The 918 is a road missile, after all. Its 4.6-liter V8 and pair of electric motors produce a combined 795 horsepower and 552 pound-feet of torque, more than any Ferrari or Lamborghini currently being produced. Yet Porsche also expects it to achieve 78 mpg on the European cycle.

Production of the 918 Spyder begins in 2013. Porsche’s hybrid supercar carries of a price tag of $845,000, and only 918 will be made.

Product Review

We can’t find a reason to buy the Porsche Design Mate 20 RS over the Mate 20 Pro

The Huawei Mate 20 Pro looks like an exceptional phone, so can a version with Porsche Design’s involvement be worth spending twice as much on? We’ve taken the phone for a test drive.

Porsche’s all-electric Taycan sedan will cost less than a Panamera

Porsche's Mission E concept won't change much as it transitions to a production model named Taycan that's scheduled to arrive in 2019. That means the sedan will keep the sleek design and its 800-volt charging system.

Race car or daily driver? Choose either with the 2019 Porsche Panamera GTS

Porsche has expanded the Panamera lineup with a midrange, GTS-badged model. Part race car and part daily driver, it's the variant we've been waiting for since the current-generation Panamera arrived in 2017.

Porsche upgrades German factory to build Taycan electric cars

A Porsche factory that currently builds the automaker's popular sports cars will soon begin churning out Taycan electric cars. In preparation, Porsche is upgrading the factory to be high tech and low emissions.

Room to roam: The supersized X7 is unlike any BMW you’ve ever seen

The first-ever BMW X7 is the 7 Series of the SUV world in terms of size, price, and image. Its supersized body has enough room for seven adult passengers and enough tech to impress even the most cutting-edge buyers.

'4WD' or 'AWD'? Which setup is right for you?

Although four-wheel drive (4WD) and all-wheel drive (AWD) are related, they are actually quite different in how they operate. Here, we talk about the fundamental differences between the two systems, and what it means for you as a driver.

Google Maps now shows EV owners the way to the nearest charging station

Google Maps now lets electric-car owners find the nearest charging station with ease. It's also added data on the number and types of ports available, charging speeds, and notes on the business where the station is located.

Heads up, George Jetson: Terrafugia starts taking orders for its flying car

The Terrafugia Transition flying car will go on sale next year, roughly a decade after the first prototype rolled out of its hangar. Terrafugia promises improvements, including a hybrid powertrain, to make up for the long wait.

At 503 mph, Turbinator II is the world’s fastest wheel-driven vehicle

The Turbinator II is a four-wheel drive streamliner powered by a 5,000-horsepower helicopter engine, and it just achieved 503.332 mph at the Bonneville Salt Flats. That's an unofficial record for a wheel-driven car.

Lyft has a new fixed-price subscription plan for frequent passengers

Lyft wants you to save money by using rideshare services instead of owning a car. The new Lyft All-Access Plan monthly rideshare trip subscription includes 30 rides a month with a small discount for additional trips.

Could the next Mazda3 boast a fuel-saving breakthrough in engine tech?

Mazda released a teaser video that likely previews the next Mazda3. Expected to make its global debut at the L.A. auto show, the next 3 will wear a more curvaceous design and offer one of the most advanced engines in the automotive…

Workhorse takes on diesel with lighter, cheaper NGEN-1000 electric delivery van

Ohio-based Workhorse Group claims its new NGEN-1000 electric delivery van costs the same as a conventional diesel van and can haul a similar amount of cargo. A lower curb weight makes this possible.
Product Review

Audi's new A8 is so sophisticated and serene, it practically deletes potholes

The 2019 Audi A8’s outline looks promising: Level 3 autonomous driving capability, haptic-feedback infotainment screens, rear-wheel steering, Matrix LED headlights and OLED taillights, plus a predictive suspension.

Forget transponders with Peasy’s nationwide pay-as-you-go toll service

Verra Mobility launched Peasy, a consumer highway and bridge toll payment service. Designed to be less hassle than managing traditional transponder or toll tag accounts, Peasy pays tolls as they are levied across most of the U.S.