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Porsche reveals electric Mission R race-car concept. Image by Porsche.

Porsche reveals electric Mission R race-car concept
Mission R concept shows a possible future for Porsche’s customer racing cars
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What's the news?

This is the Mission R, an all-electric racing car concept that Porsche revealed this week at the IAA Mobility 2021 motor show in Munich. Porsche says this is a car for a one-make race series like the existing Carrera Cup. It seems unlikely it will replace the 911-based series, at least for now, but could it hold clues to the next generation of the Cayman? Perhaps.

How does it look?

Like a racing car, basically. There's some similarity in a few key design elements with the electric Taycan, but the Mission R is all about chasing the chequered flag.

In profile, the sloping roofline disguises the clever engineering of the cabin and canopy. Viewed from above, the carbon roof structure forms a sort of exoskeleton, combining safety cage and roof skin. This slopes down towards the rear to meet a big wing and the now familiar light bar across the rear.

That wing is adjustable, comprising two sections and is part of the overall Porsche Active Aerodynamics drag reduction system along with louvres in the nose section's side air intakes. Below, rear diffusers help keep the car stuck to the track when it's making the most of its considerable power.

What about considerable power?

It's got 1,100hp, can sprint from 0-62mph in under 2.5 seconds and go on to reach a top speed of 186mph. Well, in qualifying mode at least. Qualifying mode is essentially a full attack setting, suitable, as the name suggests for qualifying or very short sprints. A motor driving the front axle provides up to 435hp with another delivering a potential 653hp to the back wheels. For longer race stints, the Mission R produces a constant 680hp.

What are recharging times like?

Fifteen minutes is all it takes to get the Mission R from five per cent battery charge up to around 80 per cent from a 900-volt 340kW charger.

How comfortable is the interior?

It's a racing car, so the lap of luxury isn't to be expected. There's lots of use of natural fibre reinforced plastic (NFRP), made from flax fibres, which is also used extensively for the exterior bodywork.

With only a single seat, everything is focused on the driver with a display on the steering wheel showing relevant data like speed, level of charge, etc. A monitor above the steering column relays images to the driver from cameras mounted around the car taking the place of rear-view mirrors. Another set of cameras mounted inside the cockpit are arranged for video recording or live-streaming. If you think this all sounds very gamer then there's more, because Porsche actually says that the cabin set-up is identical to that of an e-sports simulator.

How likely is this to make production?

As a potential single-make race series, the electric equivalent to the Carrera Cup, then It's never going to be built in high numbers. However, Porsche has sold thousands of its customer race cars over the years so it's not a wild fantasy to think the Mission R, or something based on it, could become a big part of the Porsche motorsport portfolio.

David Mullen - 7 Sep 2021

2021 Porsche Mission R concept. Image by Porsche.2021 Porsche Mission R concept. Image by Porsche.2021 Porsche Mission R concept. Image by Porsche.2021 Porsche Mission R concept. Image by Porsche.2021 Porsche Mission R concept. Image by Porsche.

2021 Porsche Mission R concept. Image by Porsche.2021 Porsche Mission R concept. Image by Porsche.2021 Porsche Mission R concept. Image by Porsche.2021 Porsche Mission R concept. Image by Porsche.2021 Porsche Mission R concept. Image by Porsche.    - Porsche road tests
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