Porsche’s LMP1 Le Mans and 2014 World Endurance Championship contender hits the track for pre-season testing, as the 918 Spyder gears up for its Frankfurt Motor Show debut.[Not a valid template]
Last time we caught up with the brand new LMP1 Porsche, lips in Stuttgart were sealed regarding performance figures, technical updates and a 2014 motorsport campaign. And while three months later that still proves to be the case, newly released images of the LMP1 testing on the company’s private circuit in Weissach near Stuttgart, Porsche has at least unveiled a few details to keep Porka motorsport enthusiasts at bay.
Test drivers have now been confirmed, baring light on Porsche’s driver line-up for its first official start at Le Mans since 1998 (which, by the way, it won). Current Red Bull Racing pilot Mark Webber’s move is a much-documented one, though testing so far has been undertaken by Neel Jani (former Toro Rosso test driver and current Rebellion Racing WEC driver), Romain Dumas (current Porsche AG Team Manthey WEC driver) and former Nurburgring 24 Hours winner Timo Bernhard, who also took overall victory alongside Dumas for Audi at the 2010 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Furthermore, in-keeping with new-for-2014 regulations of the World Endurance Championship (in which Porsche will compete next year in the top-tier LMP1 class), the new mule will include hybrid drive technology, a factor also of key significance for the company’s other big performance bruiser, the 918 Spyder.[Not a valid template]
There’s less than a week to go before the 918 – which earlier this year stopped by the Dubai Autodrome for some hot weather testing – makes its international debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Ushering in a new era, as Porsche likes to call it, the 918 Spyder kicks out 887hp from its plug-in hybrid V8 powerplant, amounting to an impressive 0-100kph time of 2.8 seconds. With Porsche also celebrating 50 years of the 911 at Frankfurt, the marque will also showcase the limited edition ’50 Years 911’ model and unveil the 911 Turbo S, 40 years after the debut of the turbocharged original.
– Selected images courtesy of Porsche.