Having already ruled out the possibility of an all-electric Porsche 911 happening anytime soon, the model-line Head for both it and the 718 Cayman/Boxster has further elaborated on the matter, saying that “I don’t believe in an electric 911”.
In an extensive interview with Autocar India after making the initial comments to Australian media, Frank-Steffen Walliser indicated that while murmurs of an all-electric 911 had taken place, it is simply “too iconic” to have anything but an internal combustion engine fitted.
“When I started my job, then on the horizon, there was an idea of an electric 911. If that’s the first job I did, I would be killing this car, which will not happen,” Walliser said.
“I would definitely fight for petrol engines as long as we could do that, and I strongly believe that for the next 15-20 years, we will still see a lot of cars driving with combustion engines. Maybe majority will be plug-in hybrids and hybrid electric vehicles, but that will also take time. It will not happen overnight”.
Asked about the possibility of a four-cylinder 911 happening, Walliser, who in a related interview with Britain’s evo magazine stated that the standard Carrera will only ever be fitted with a turbocharged engine, remarked that the 911 will always have a flat-six as the lack of two cylinders rules it out from being called a 911.
“With a flat-four, it’s a 912. So skipping two cylinders for a hybrid, even if we have it in the range, is not an option,” he said, before reiterating that a hybrid drivetrain, in spite of several evaluations, would not be happening either.
“We have talked a lot about hybrids in the 911 over many years but have never brought one to the market because we have not solved the equation of package, space and weight. And everything I’ve seen so far has definitely not been convincing,” Walliser continued.
“We decided that we couldn’t do it; it is not a 911. I will never destroy the architecture, the shape, the 2+2, the roomy cabin – relatively roomy cabin for a 911 – for the sake of a hybrid. The biggest burden on hybrid is the extra weight; so we’d have to look for the lightest possible version of a hybrid. It’s still one of the biggest challenges for our engineers.”