A new Porsche supercar that would sit between the iconic 911 and upcoming 918 Spyder will switch its sights from the Ferrari 458 to the Ferrari F12 if it goes into production, according to company sources.
Porsche CEO Matthias Muller has previously stated the German car maker is considering a new supercar model to rival the V8-powered 458.
A Porsche insider told CarAdvice at the international launch of the new Cayman, however, that the new Porsche 911 Turbo due later this year would have sufficient performance to match the 458 Italia.
“We are still thinking of a car between 911 and [upcoming] 918, but I think with the 458 we can fight against that with the next 911 Turbo, that’s no problem.
“It’s the same power level. But there will be more a car that can fight against the [Ferrari] F12.”
The F12 is the fastest car ever produced by Ferrari and is powered by a 6.3-litre V12 with 544kW and 690Nm.
If the Porsche supercar gets the green light, it’s unlikely to go into production before 2017 our source indicated.
The model, rumoured to be codenamed 960, would be built in much larger numbers than the Porsche 918 Spyder that will make its production debut at September’s 2013 Frankfurt motor show before hitting the assembly line in October.
Porsche is building just 918 units of the hybrid 918 that will be left-hand-drive only but from a combination of V8 engine and electric motors to accelerate from 0-100km/h in 3 seconds yet use just 3.0 litres of fuel every 100km.
The Porsche insider says the 918 would be considered more of a successor to the company’s famous blockbuster supercars, the 959 and Carrera GT, rather than the F12 fighter.
“[The F12 fighter] could be something like this [a successor to 959], but normally we would say the 959 and Carrera GT are the predecessors of the 918, because they showed the latest technology. And that’s the same for the 918.”
Both our source and a Porsche engine development teamleader, Dr Martin Constien, have dismissed rumours of an eight-cylinder horizontally opposed – ‘boxer’ – engine for the new supercar.
To match the V12-powered Ferrari F12, it’s likely Porsche would borrow an engine from the VW Group stable – a V8 or V10 boosted by two or more turbochargers.
The Porsche insider insists the supercar would be a pure Porsche despite rumours the model would be based on the platform of the next-generation Audi R8.
“If we build the car over 911 it will be a new model line, just like the Macan.
“We are integrated in the Volkswagen Group but I think we will [continue to] build our own cars. There is a share of some parts and some experience, so on, but you will see this [example of Porsche being a Porsche] when we enter Le Mans next year.
“This [race car] will not be an Audi [Le Mans car] with a Porsche shape. It’s a real Porsche.”
Hopes of a baby Porsche sports car to sit under the Boxster seem to have all but vanished, with the company going cold on the plan.