It was only yesterday that Porsche CEO, Matthias Mueller, officially confirmed the brand’s plans for a future Ferrari rival, but already there are rumors flying around about the future sports car. During the unveiling of the new Porsche 911/991, Wolfgang Hatz (Porsche Head of Research and Development) revealed that a flat-eight boxer engine is being considered for the future Ferrari rival.
This new option stems from Porsche engineers’ angst over not being able to take the 911’s flat-six engine past 4.0 liters. Moving to a flat-8 would be the next logical step considering Porsche’s major competition - Ferrari - currently dominates the market in this price segment with its V8-powered sportscars. That alone would be enough for Porsche to develop a new eight cylinder engine, but the company also feels the switch would be necessary if they plan to successfully differentiate the new model from both the 911 and the next-generation Cayman.
The new flat-8 engine should be an easy development for Porsche because the company has already created a turbocharged flat-four engine that will be dropped into a future entry level roadster. This engine is modular and can be extended into the next-generation flat-6 and flat-8. Porsche also has a history with the flat-8 engine. Back in the late 1960’s, Porsche built an air-cooled 1.5L flat-8 for Formula One that extended to a 3.0 L version for the Porsche 908 in 1968. That engine was able to pump out 300 HP back then, making a competitor for the 458 Italia’s 570 HP V8 an attainable goal.
When created, the new engine will be mated to an updated version of the Carrera GT’s ultra-compact transmission.