While Porsche has proven itself more than willing to use plug-in hybrid powertrains in models ranging from hypercars to sedans and SUVs over the last decade, the carmaker has remained far more noncommittal when it comes to the subject of sliding big batteries and electric motors beneath the classic shape of the 911. After years of will-they-won't-they, the matter seemed settled earlier this year, when 911 development boss August Achleitner said Porsche had put the kaibosh on the project for the new 992-generation car, citing the weight and cost of the hybrid components.
But at least one person of note at the carmaker seems to be suggesting otherwise. And according to technical communications manager Hermann-Josef Stappen, any 911 hybrid would be an outstanding performance car.
“If we will bring a hybrid 911, it will also again be the best 911 ever,” Stappen told Australia's Motoring.
The company, he said, is constantly looking at developing a hybrid 911. But Porsche hasn't decided whether or not to pull the trigger, according to Stappen, in part because it's still unclear how well the iconic rear-engined sports car's loyal fan base would take to the idea of electron-powered motors and battery packs.
"How many cars can we sell if we do it? Will our customers accept it?” Stappen said to Motoring.
Ultimately, he suggested they likely would, so long as it packed the performance to serve as "the top car" in the segment. That seems to imply a hybrid 911 would follow in the footsteps of the new Panamera Turbo S e-Hybrid, which uses its plug-in components to crank out 130 horses more than any other model in the lineup (though at a cost of several hundred extra pounds).
But it's more likely, he said, that the Boxster and Cayman—officially known as the 718 twins these days, in case you'd forgotten—would gain hybrid variants before the 911. The mid-engined layout, he suggested, was more conducive to hybridization. (Indeed, Porsche sneakily released a mysterious picture of a "Boxster E-Mobility" as part of a press release earlier this year with nary a detail about it, suggesting such a car may be closer to production that some might think.)