Lohner-Porsche “Semper Vivus” on show at the Porsche Museum
Stuttgart. As part of the new special exhibition "Ferdinand Porsche - Pioneer of the Hybrid Drive”, the museum at Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG, Stuttgart, is presenting a reconstruction of the first workable full-hybrid car in the world, the “Semper Vivus”. By designing this vehicle, the visionary Ferdinand Porsche was entering an entirely new area of technology – 111 years ago. In this vehicle, two generators, connected to petrol engines, form a charging unit which simultaneously provides current to motors at the wheel hub as well as to batteries.
The special exhibition, which begins on 10 May, provides visitors with a fascinating glimpse of the early engineering creations of the young Ferdinand Porsche, and explains the technology of the first standard production hybrid vehicle. Other special exhibitions, such as the drive train of the Cayenne off-roader and the Porsche Hybrid Bike, provide detailed insights into the hybrid technology of the sports car manufacturer. A wheel hub and a DeDion-Bouton motor, which drove the generators of the “Semper Vivus”, are added attractions at the exhibition, and demonstrate the great technological achievements which were already being attained more than a hundred years ago.
Highlight of the Special Exhibition: Drive demonstrations at the Exhibition
Driving in the “Semper Vivus” is an exhilarating experience, as well as a strenuous one. With a front axle load of 1060 kilograms, and 830 kg on the rear, steering without power assistance can be quite an effort. To compensate, the driver has an excellent view of the road ahead from his single seat perched two metres above the ground. On the last weekend but one in May, Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 May, visitors can experience the performance of the “Semper Vivus” for themselves, live. At 15.00 hours on each day, the Porsche Museum will be presenting driving demonstrations on the exhibition ground. Porsche experts will be on hand to provide the public with more information and to answer questions about the history and technology of the vehicle.
The fully-functioning replica of the “Semper Vivus” came into being on the basis of design sketches and some extensive research. In co-operation with the engineers from Porsche Engineering and the company Karosseriebau Drescher from the town of Hinterzarten, a replica was created which is faithful to the original in every detail, a visionary concept which to this day is still hugely impressive. Building the “Semper Vivus” 111 years after it was invented was a massive challenge for everyone concerned. The task was not only to succeed in maximum authenticity of detail, but also to achieve the performance capacities of the original.
The Porsche Museum is open Tuesday through Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Admission for adults is eight Euro, and four Euro for those entitled to discounts. Children up to the age of fourteen accompanied by an adult are admitted free. More information is available on the Internet at www.porsche.com/museum.
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