2018 Porsche 911 could use new shared chassis

The next generation Porsche 911 – likely to be dubbed the ‘Type 992’ – could ride on a newly developed modular sports car platform, if sources close to Zuffenhausen are correct.

While major technological changes are not uncommon for new generations of Neunelfer, Porsche has only carried out a wholesale overhaul of the underpinning architecture on the 911 twice since the car’s debut in 1963: once with the 996 and most recently with the 991.

The new modular chassis would allow Porsche greater flexibility with regards to engine choices. However, before you start worrying about the possibility of the 718 Boxster’s flat four under the Porsche 992’s decklid, it is more likely the move is to accommodate Porsche’s hybrid technology into the next generation 911.

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According to the rumours, the same modular platform will also find its way into the next generation Cayman and Boxster and could be shared with VW Group stablemates, Lamborghini and Audi (the latter for the R8 supercar).

The move would be a radical step for the 911, Porsche having long kept its iconic sports car ring-fenced from its in-house rivals. However, with VW Group needing to save money after the diesel emissions crisis, a shared modular platform would help to reduce development and manufacturing costs across the board.

Expected to be launched in 2018 (or possibly at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show for the 2018 model year) it’s been 12 months since we last spotted Porsche testing a 992 prototype.

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Total 911’s spies, however, recently caught a new 992 test mule on camera as it was put through its paces at the Nürburgring Nordschleife. Unlike the car from a year ago, the 992 prototype now runs with the 991.2 front and rear bumpers, suggesting that the switch to turbocharged engines is very much here to stay.

Interestingly, the test mule appears to be running the wide front arches from the current 911 GT3 RS (albeit with the Rennsport’s exit vents removed). Coupled with the makeshift arch extensions at the rear, the latest prototype suggests the Porsche 992 will feature a wider track than the current Carrera.

Whether the wider track is used to put more rubber on the road or to package the hybrid option is yet to be seen however, if the 2018 launch date is correct, there is still a year of development left before launch. In that time, the current 991 is set to get some special edition ‘run out’ models.

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