He thinks it's possible, adding Porsche is actually talking about doing it.
At only 384 kilograms (847 pounds), the 909 Bergspyder will go down in history as Porsche’s lightest car ever. Then there was the 718 Formel 2, tipping the scales at just 456 kg (1,005 lbs). We also mustn’t omit the 356 SL with its aluminum body to keep weight in check at a remarkably low 640 kg (1,410 lbs). These are just three examples of Porsche’s expertise regarding lightweight sports cars, an expertise the company’s head of designer would like to be channeled towards the development of a new back-to-basics model.
Speaking with CAR magazine, Michael Mauer admitted “I’d love to do a pure new sports car, reduced to the maximum. We will see. There is a lot of discussion. I think it’s possible, especially with new materials.” He went on to mention one of the company’s earliest efforts, the 550 Spyder, and how he’d want a modern interpretation of the 1950s roadster.
The closest thing Porsche offers today is a 718 Boxster T, but at 1,335 kg (2,943 lbs), it’s a far cry from the lightweight models of yesteryear. Needless to say, no automaker could ever go back to building those cars, what with all the regulations regarding mandatory safety equipment, crumple zones, airbags, etc. However, stripping down a Boxster to the bare essentials and making it even smaller should shave off some of the fat.
While Mauer is thinking of a sub-718 Boxster model with a more attainable price tag that would entice purists, we can’t help but wonder what Porsche could come up with for the one-percenters. Another member of the Volkswagen Group, Lamborghini, launched in 2010 a track-only, $3-million Sesto Elemento that weighed 999 kg (2,202 lbs) by dipping the Gallardo in carbon fiber.
The topic of weight is of great concern to Porsche as the company has admitted the electric Boxster and Cayman development is hindered by heavy batteries. A decision about removing the combustion engine from the company’s entry-level sports cars hasn’t been made yet. Porsche is currently testing electric Boxster prototypes to learn more about what it must be done. Meanwhile, the Macan is getting ready to embrace an EV future.