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Porsche 919 for Le Mans in 3 colors: New technology and new look

Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1
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Porsche 919 Hybrid - 8 MJ, yes or no?

V iel could no longer be presented for Porsche in Ricard: the focus was on the so-called livery for Le Mans, where the three works cars in the basic shades of white, black and red will be at the start. The basic technical specification of the Porsche 919 Hybrid was just as well known as the improvements for the new season. Only one question was not yet official: 8 MJ - yes or no?

Although that is not entirely true either, because Porsche had actually let the cat out of the bag during test drives in Bahrain in mid-February and admitted that a start in the 8 MJ class would be the preferred choice. And in fact it was announced in Ricard that the efficiency of the entire hybrid system has been improved by a good 30 percent and that it is therefore possible to start in the highest energy class.

8 MJ - is that the right decision?

Which raises the question of why Porsche dares to take the step - and Toyota, for example, not? The decision is more than tricky, because you have to find a good compromise for very different types of tracks in the sports car world championship using complex simulations. Toyota Technical Director Pascal Vasselon says: 'It can easily happen to be blinded by the target 8 MJ, then you might get the receipt afterwards!' His argument: aerodynamic efficiency counts more than the hybrid class, especially at Le Mans. As an example, it should only be mentioned how competitive Audi was with the R18 E-Tron Quattro in Le Mans 2014 - although they competed in the smallest class up to 2 MJ.

Even Porsche chief technology officer Alex Hitzinger says: 'It It is a tough task to be able to recuperate and boost 8 MJ at Le Mans. With the hybrid conversion factor for the other World Championship tracks, you run the risk of not creating 8 MJ there, which means that you become inefficient because you are weight for a system that does not achieve full performance. '

Porsche believes in the 8 MJ potential

For Toyota, the decision was not to switch from 6 to 8 MJ , fell quite early, as Vasselon reveals: 'We didn't manage 6 MJ last year in Le Mans. For Le Mans 2015 we would have had to be at least in the range of 7.2 MJ by simulation to justify an upgrade to 8 MJ That wasn't the case, so we focused on ourTo strengthen the hybrid system so that we can constantly call up the power over the race distance instead of switching to the 8 MJ class. '

Vasselon also points out that decreasing batteries or supercapacitors have a complicated effect on the consumption of the 'We concentrated on stabilizing the hybrid output instead of increasing it, that brings more.'

Ultimately, Porsche came to the conclusion that 8 MJ offers more potential, especially for Le Mans: 'The regulations incentivize 1 MJ in Le Mans with around 0.5 seconds per lap. By increasing from 6 to 8 MJ you gain a full second - and as an engineer I want that of course. '

Porsche conservatively calculates the hybrid output at around 400 hp, plus 500 hp from the two-liter Another reason for starting in the 8 MJ class: only Porsche uses an exhaust gas energy recovery system in the LMP1 field, in which electricity is generated via an additional turbocharger like a generator. This system allegedly accounts for almost a third of the hybrid energy .

With a naturally aspirated engine like the one Toyota uses, the use of such a system makes no sense, just as it does with a diesel engine like the one Audi uses, because in both cases there is too little energy in the exhaust gas to optimize such a system To do this, only Porsche uses batteries as energy storage - and these batteries are more efficient and stronger than supercapacitors (Toyota) or flywheel solutions (Audi). Porsche has two advantages here, which they use wherever Because in 2016 Audi and Toyota will also switch to batteries - and then all LMP1 manufacturers will probably drive in the sports car world championship with 8 MJ.

In our gallery we will show you the new Porsche 919 fleet in the unusual paintwork.


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