Porsche's new GT3 racer has a surprise in the passenger seat...
Gotta say, I didn't see this one coming. Porsche went ahead and blindsided everyone by introducing their newest racer; the 911 GT3 R Hybrid. It's a derivative of Porsche's 911 GT3 R that uses a newly developed KERS-like hybrid system. The system uses a flywheel where the passenger would otherwise not sit (this is a racecar, after all), which gathers kinetic energy under braking. The energy is stored and then transferred to two electric motors powering the front wheels. The motors then provide a six to eight second 161 hp burst.
Porsche has big plans for this technology too. The 911 GT3 R Hybrid is set to campaign the Nürburgring 24 Hours (that 161 burst should provide a pretty good zip between Dottinger Hohe and Tiergarten) as a "racing laboratory" this May. Long-term, Porsche plans to continue to develop the system for a 24 Hours of Le Mans effort in the next few years, when it's predicted that ACO rules will begin favoring hybrids.
The GT3 R Hybrid is set to debut in Geneva along with its official performance figures.