Porsche is about to unleash a very different type of hybrid on the residents of California, announcing plans to have the GT3 R Hybrid race car take part in the American Le Mans Series race at Laguna Seca on September 17th.
The race car won’t be eligible to race for points, as the ALMS governing body does not yet allow hybrids, but that doesn’t mean it won’t be competing and looking for a win. Porsche works pilots, Romain Dumas and Richard Lietz, who have both raced the car, will be sharing duties behind the wheel.
Version 2.0 of the hybrid racer, the GT3 R Hybrid uses a modified version of the original’s powertrain, making 470-hp from a naturally aspirated six-cylinder boxer engine, with an additional 200-hp of electric boost available on demand. It also weights over 100 lbs less than the original thanks to a focus on weight savings for the electric components.
So far the GT3 R Hybrid has competed in two races this year, finishing a disappointing 28th at the Nurburgring 24 Hour Race as a result of rule changes for hybrid cars as well as contact with another vehicle. The hybrid racer did start off the year strong, however, taking the podium at the Nürburgring Long Distance Championship in Germany.