Despite the seemingly insurmountable odds stacked against it, the supercar has a future brighter than ever. According to the many doom-mongers, recent worldwide economic woes and tough environmental legislation were going to force everyone into minuscule motors that were nothing short of electric runabouts.
If this year's crop of hyper-cars is anything to go by, though, we'll be enjoying the sights and sounds of ridiculous automobiles for many years to come. Only you might not hear the Porsche 918 Spyder at all, because it happens to have a rather green outlook on high-performance thrills, thanks to electric (and quite silent) propulsion.
The Spyder's twin electric motors go some way to help supplement the power of its snarling, petrol-fed V8 engine and, between them, they pack an 887hp punch. Yet this car is as planet-friendly as a Toyota Yaris and, if you find Dh3.3 million down the back of the sofa, you'd be advised to get your order in quickly because only 918 will be built (deliveries start in January 2014) and deposits for more than half that number have already been taken.
It's being officially unveiled at this autumn's Frankfurt Motor Show and, according to Porsche, was developed with Abu Dhabi's Yas Marina circuit set as its performance benchmark. And performance is something the 918 Spyder offers in abundance. On only electric power, the 0-to-100kph dash is dealt with in less than seven seconds and you can drive 30km before needing to summon the fossil fuel alternative.
With the petrol engine on song, that 100kph is reached in just 2.8 seconds and it won't stop accelerating until it's doing 340kph.
But the hybrid technology is so staggeringly efficient that, despite the colossal performance on tap, the Spyder's average fuel consumption is just three litres for every 100km. Add to this the fact that this is easily Porsche's best-looking car in many a year and the Spyder's appeal is obvious. If the price tag seems a little daunting, bear in mind that any limited edition Porsche is a sound investment.