There are unlikely stories, and then there is this. Five designers working for a Chinese car company, using company facilities in their off-hours, create a hypothetical Porsche racecar, one we’ve covered before. Drawing inspiration from both the 917 and 908, and incorporating modern Porsche design language, they create a model. They create a gorgeous model. Midway through the project, they are approached by Porsche via email. Up to this point, this project had been strictly between friends, they had not approached Porsche about the project, and were officially still under the purview of their employers in China.
Fortunately, Porsche liked the project. Porsche liked the project enough to endorse it officially, and allow the model to wear official Porsche liveries, markings, and carry their branding. While the 908-4 model may not offer performance to rival the 919 Hybrid, the aerodynamic package appears to be optimized for top speed rather than downforce, it is a striking creation. It’s fascinating to look at the model and take in elements of Porsches past and present.
The 911R has been called “the greatest hits of Porsche,” but this model takes that idea to another level. The 908-4 model features long-tail bodywork inspired by the 908 and 917 “Langheck,” high mounted exhausts from the 918 Spyder, wheels styled after the original 918 Spyder prototype, and a cockpit design that is equal parts 917 and 919. Just check out the sill-mounted H-patter shifter visible in the interior shots!
Seeing this model makes me slightly sad that Porsche has no reason to build the real thing. It doesn’t seem cop with any current racing rule, but it just looks so right, I want to see it in the flesh. While the Chinese car industry catches a lot of flak in the automotive press, this little model is proof positive that some of the people involved have their heads and hearts in the right place.