Since first being unveiled as a concept car in Paris in 2000, the Porsche Carrera GT has been aimed purely at the likes of Ferrari and Lamborghini. The new Porsche which will be unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show in March features a host of advanced materials applications which help to propel the car to phenomenal speeds, and then bring it to a halt again.
Starting at the business end, the new Carrera GT features a 5.7 litre V10 engine (based on their 5.5 litre race engine) made of a blend of exotic alloys. This transmits its 612 DIN horsepower and 437 pound-feet of torque to a six speed gearbox via a Porsche Ceramic Composite Clutch (PCCC) racing clutch.
Ceramic composite materials are also used in the brakes, where Porsche Ceramic Composite Brakes (PCCB) help to bring the Carrera GT back to more sedate speeds. Porsche were the first auto manufacturer to offer the ceramic composite brakes in a production vehicle when they employed them in the 911 Carrera GT2 in 2001.
Keeping weight down and helping transmit the surplus of power to the ground are super light weight magnesium racing wheels manufactured using a special forging process never before used on a mass produced vehicle. Not the sort of wheels you want to scrape the curb with!
Ensuring the weight is kept to a minimum, but providing sufficient strength to deal with the abundance of power is a monocoque and sub frame constructed completely of carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP). While having to deal with the massive power outputted by the engine, the CFRP body also has to deal with a claimed top speed of 330km/h! So unique is the design that Porsche have applied to patent it, while carbon fibre was chosen as it was the only material available that could deal with the complex processing and provide the required properties.
For the more technically inclined, the Carrera GT can accelerate from rest to 100km/h in 3.9 seconds or to 200km/h in 9.9 seconds. It weighs 1380kg and has a height of only 116cm.
For those of you with plenty of expendable income, the first models will be rolling off the Leipzig, Germany production line late in 2003. However, be warned production is limited for this gorgeous road going rocket.