Porsche to produce plug-in sports car

By Annalyn Censky, staff reporter

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Porsche announced Wednesday that it will produce its 918 Spyder plug-in hybrid sports car, which was unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show in April. The car boasts a 500-horsepower V8 engine and is expected to be among the most expensive Porsches ever produced.

The German sports carmaker said it green lighted the car after receiving "overwhelming response from the public and customers" on its concept study. Back in April, Porsche's development chief, Wolfgang Duerheimer, said Porsche needed at least 1,000 sales pledges to start building the car.

This 918 Spyder uses electric motors in the front and rear axles to supplement the gasoline engine power. It plugs in for its electric power, which is stored in a liquid-cooled lithium ion battery housed just behind the seats.

Porsche has not yet set the price for the car.

The most expensive Porsche ever sold was the Carrera GT, last produced for the 2005 model year with a sticker price of $440,000.

Porsche revealed two other hybrids at the same show, including its first hybrid racecar, the 911 GT3 R Hybrid, which is equipped with an electrical generator instead of heavy batteries. The car has raced in the Le Mans series in Europe and will make its U.S. racing debut this fall in Atlanta.

The third car -- the Cayenne S Hybrid -- has just entered production and can drive on electric power alone at speeds up to 97 miles power hour. To top of page

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