It was as obsessively engineered as any other Porsche.
Porsche took the covers off the Mission R electric racer concept at the International Motor Show (IAA) in Munich in September. It immediately blew us away with its motorsport styling and its breathtaking performance. As a preview of Porsche's electrified future, it's something we're excited about, just as the Mission E paved the way for today's Taycan.
But to give us a better understanding of what the Mission R is like under the skin and what makes it such a spectacular racer, even in concept form, Porsche has detailed some of the engineering team's processes. Porsche designed this car with the same attention to detail as it would any other production model, and it had to meet the brand's stupendously high technical standards from the start. It even has a heated windshield to improve visibility in wet conditions.
First, let's get a few headline figures out of the way. With all-wheel drive and two electric motors, the Mission R produces as much as 1,072 horsepower and will get to 62 mph in less than 2.5 seconds.
"Thanks to the direct cooling of the stator - the stationary element of the electric machine in which the rotor rotates - the units deliver exceptionally high continuous power," says Porsche. The high-voltage battery is directly oil-cooled, a system that's based on learnings from the Porsche 919 Hybrid. The company went to great lengths to save weight - this isn't a surprise since a racer like this demands as little weight as possible, but EVs tend to be far heavier than their gas-powered equivalents.
The 3D-printed transmission case cover is 30 percent lighter than a cast item would be, while the added braking power from recuperation saved over 26 pounds from the system. As for the chassis, it was built in the racing department in Flacht, Germany, before being transferred to a high-security facility called Building 100 in Weissach. Racing driver Lars Kern already began testing the Mission R before the car was even fitted with its shell, exposing all the electronic bits beneath. A steel subframe was used at this early point before the final composite cage was installed.
Kern has no complaints about testing the Mission R in this "naked" form, however. "What surprised me the most was how advanced the car already was," he said. "And of course, the immediate availability of tremendous torque and overall driving dynamics. At that point it was clear: what's being created here is going to be a lot of fun."