A new mid-engine supercar will be developed by Porsche in Ferrari 458 Italia territory. This should not be confused with the range-topping Porsche because the new Porsche 960 supercar will sit between the new 918 hybrid hypercar and the 911 at his 2015 launch.
The model’s codename is 960, and this new supercar will most likely be based on the VW Mimo platform which will supersede the rear-engined 911 package.
Porsche scoped out the existing 9X1/991/911 hardware for its new 458 car, but they gave up on this plan. Because only a mid-engined architecture is deemed worthy of a car that will be priced around L200,000, why shouldn’t they twin the Porsche 960 supercar with the 918?
The project 960 has almost nothing to do with the 918 Spyder, because Porsche is trying to make 960 the lead car for the Mimo platform. This platform hasn’t been signed off because of political issues and a lack of a firm commitment from Audi.
The Mimo platform is now known as MSB-M, which is short for modular sports car matrix, mid-engined version. The Porsche 960 will go into production in September 2015, so it will be based on the same components set as the next 911 which will be released in 2018.
This is possible because this new components set incorporate a second bloodline labeled MSB-H, the H means Heckmotor which is German for rear-engined.
Mimo architecture: from VW Bluesport to supercars
Now, there isn’t much information about how much the new architecture differs from the MSS modular sports car system which is reserved for the next Gallardo (2013) and the new R8 (2015). The Architecture needs to be more flexible in order to make provision for two different engine installations. Also, it needs to encompass three different size and cost patterns to span the full line-up from the VW Bluesport over 991 and Gallardo to the Murcielago and the new Porsche 960.
To complicate matters even further, the MSB architecture must be RWD and AWD compatible, comply with various materials and bodystyles and be capable of accommodating inline engines, flat fours and sixes as well as the complete V6/V8/V10/V12 spectrum. Their engineers will definitely have to work hard!
Back when the Ferrari fighter from Zuffenhausen was known as 961, it was very likely to be powered by a twin-turbo V8, and it also superseded the 918 Spyder for inspiration in design and carbon fibre structure.
The beancounters weren’t satisfied by this, so Porsche offered a more mundane matrix with a 3.8-liter twin turbo boxer that develops 600bhp and 550lb-ft of torque.
A six-pot supercar: downsizing in action
Now why should you settle with a six-cylinder engine when the target car has a V8? Well, the V6 is more compact, and it lowers the centre of gravity, so it’s more efficient and cheaper to build. Also, it offers that unique Porsche touch.
With a high price of €200,000, the 2015 Porsche 960 will be available in coupé and roadster guise.