How much power is too much for a race car? Any petrolhead worth their salt would probably say, "It's never too much." And it seems that Porsche definitely got that memo with their all-new GT4 e-Performance.
The iconic German marque unveiled their fully electric race car prototype here in Singapore last week, giving audiences a preview of what Porsche customer motorsport will look like in a more environmentally mindful future, and what could perhaps be a glimpse into the next generation 718 Cayman and Boxster.
Says Björn Förster, GT4 e-Performance Project Manager, "The GT4 e-Performance proves that our vision of an all-electric race car works on track and inspires genuine excitement. The prototype offers many possibilities – including a one-make series with electric racing cars – potentially an important addition to our existing customer motorsport programme."
It shares the same chassis as the 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport, while adopting technological innovations first seen on their Mission R concept car, including its battery technology and electric motor. All in all, you can expect up to 800 kW, or 1,088 hp, on tap in qualification mode.
Visually, the GT4 e-Performance retains the sensible 718 Cayman silhouette, while going completely insane in just about every other aspect. It's a full 14 centimetres wider than the GT4 Clubsport, thanks the flared fenders and massive intakes. And mounted at the back is a similarly large and adjustable swan-neck wing, providing the car with generous amounts of downforce at high speed.
Where illumination is concerned, the all-electric Porsche features cyberpunk-like blue LED lights up front and a much more prominent full-width lightbar at the back, with the latter cleverly doubling as a charging indicator.
According to Porsche, the production of natural fibre composites and other exotic lightweight materials that make up the vast majority of the GT4 e-Performance's body panels emits fewer emissions than that of synthetic equivalents. Even the 18-inch Michelin tyres on which it sits are environmentally-friendly, snugly wrapped around the 10-spoke centrelock wheels.
To prove that electrification in motorsports is feasible, the carmaker tested the AWD race car extensively under simulated racing conditions, eventually arriving at a steady output of 450 kW (612 horsepower) for 30 minutes. In other words, it's able to last the entire duration of a Carrera Cup race.
The state of charge (SoC) of the battery at full charging capacity benefits from the 900-volt technology too, rapidly moving from 5-80% in just 15 minutes. Its top speed and lap time figures are nothing to scoff at either, with Porsche quoting comparable lap times and top speed figures with the 992-generation 911 GT3 Cup.
Being a race car, cabin space is not at a primary concern, with just two bucket seats (and a carbon fibre-encased battery on the passenger-side footwell), a roll-cage setup, and racing harnesses to strap both occupants firmly into the vehicle.
The GT4 e-Performance drew in throngs of motorsports fans to the Porsche NOW pop-up store over the week, where visitors could also take part in a time-attack challenge by driving the race car virtually around a track on a Legion of Racers (LOR) racing simulator. Exclusive Porsche prizes were presented to winners who clocked the fastest lap times daily till the end of the week.
This Singapore appearance is part of the GT4 e-Performance's world tour, with this example being one of two prototypes that exist in the world. Click here to watch the Porsche race car make its electrifying Hillclimb debut at the Goodwood Festival of Speed.
Photo Credits: Porsche Singapore & Muhammad Mu'tasim (@mutasimdrives)
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