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Porsche, a brand with a reputation for building luxury sports cars for those who truly love the experience of driving, is turning up the electricity.
The high-end German brand is about to start deliveries of its limited-edition 918 Spyder, a plug-in electric hybrid that allows Porsche fans to drive a sports car in five modes—ranging from all-electric to "hot lap," where a 4.6-liter V8 engine provides 608 of the car's maximum 887 horsepower.
"Hot Lap mode is what is really amazing," said Joe Lawrence, chief operating officer of Porsche North America. "We set the all-time record lap time at Germany's famous Nurburgring race track of 6 minutes and 57 seconds."
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Porsche will only sell 918 of the vehicles, and most of those have already been spoken for.
The price: $847,975
Porsche designed the vehicle as a way to tap into the growing technology involving electric motors and lithium-ion battery systems.
Some of the electric vehicle technology in the 918 Spyder comes from Porsche's plug-in Panamera model, which debuted in 2009.
But are Porsche fans, many of whom actually race their own cars at private racetracks, ready for an electric hybrid?
After all, electric cars—which have no gears—are a transition from the usual driving experience of shifting gears.
So far, Porsche says the introduction of an electric motor combined with the car's classic performance has been a hit.
"People have just been blown away, not only [by] how fun this car is to drive, but how amazingly easy it is to drive at high speeds," Lawrence said.
The 918 Spyder comes with all of the performance characteristics that have become hallmarks of Porsche models.
It can go 0 to 60 mph in 2.5 seconds. Using only electric power, it goes from 0 to 60 in 6.2 seconds.
Its top speed is 214 mph, while its top speed all-electric is 93 mph.
Could Porsche someday build an all-electric sports car? Maybe.
For now though, the 918 Spyder is Porsche's latest move to incorporate electric motors into a sports car built for those who truly want performance.
"This is the future of the sports car for us. This is what we would call a technology carrier for us, and the rest of our lineup. We will see a lot of this in the future," Lawrence said.
—By CNBC's Phil LeBeau.
Questions? Comments? BehindTheWheel@cnbc.com.