Porsche 918 Spyder plug-in hybrid hits the track

For those of you saving up the $845,000 you’ll need to purchase a Porsche 918 Spyder plug-in hybrid, we have good news. No, the price hasn’t come down – but it is as fast as originally advertised.

Porsche, in one of those whetting-the-appetite news releases, said the supercar prototype zipped around the 12.8-mile Nürburgring Nordschleife (a twisting and turning and rising and falling track in the Eifel mountains) in 7 minutes and 14 seconds. That’s an average speed of 106 mph.

That was enough for Porsche to shout “success!”

“With the time of 7:14 minutes, the 918 Spyder prototype is already proving to be a fully sustainable concept after just a few months on the road,” Frank Walliser, head of the 918 Spyder project, said in a statement.

Porsche said the time was “one of the best ever recorded for a street-legal vehicle with standard tires,” and was “particularly impressive as it was achieved from a standing start.”

Standing starts should be no problem: Porsche said earlier this year that in electric only mode it could go from zero to 60 in three seconds. The all-electric range is said to be 15 miles, which means the car could have completed the Nordschleife using no gas. 

However, since the top electric-only speed is 90 mph and the PEHV averaged over that, clearly it took advantage of the 570-hp, 4.6 litre V8 engine, which helps give it a top speed of 200 mph. 

Limited production (duh) of the vehicle is expected to kick off in fall 2013.

* Pete Danko, EarthTechling