New York Auto Show – Porsche Semper Vivus – rpmGo.com

Porsche Semper Vivus

Trivia: Which is the world’s first hybrid car? The answer is the Porsche Semper Vivus, built by Ferdinand Porsche himself in 1900. The car you see in these color pictures is not the original model, but a $750,000 reproduction. The original model is represented in these black & white shots.

Porsche Semper Vivus

The Semper Vivus (Latin for “always alive”) works very similar like the modern Chevrolet Volt. The battery pack provides juice to the hub-mounted motors, and two single-cylinder engines step in to drive two 2.5 kW generators, managing to keep electricity flowing when the batteries are dead.

Porsche Semper Vivus

With the batteries full, the car can be driven for up to 25 miles (40 km). After the 3.5 hp engines kick in, the Porsche Semper Vivus can travel for an additional 100 miles (160 km). With a top speed of 35 mph, it was pretty fast for the early 1900s.

Porsche Semper Vivus (Original)

The car’s tires were chiseled from solid blocks of rubber, which was the only way to support the 3,700 pounds weight of the car.

Porsche Semper Vivus (Original)

The reproduction of the original model started back in 2007 and after three years and $750,000, the end result is quite impressive. I wonder what would have happened if Ferdinand Porsche decided to stick to these hybrid powertrains.

Source: Porsche via Wired

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