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Porsche 919 Evo sets all-time 'Ring record

by Ronan Glon

The ex-Le Mans winner beat the record by nearly a minute.

Porsche has set the fastest lap time in the history of the Nürburgring. An evolution of the Le Mans-winning 919 Hybrid lapped the grueling track in five minutes and 19.5 seconds.

Timo Bernhard, one of Porsche's official drivers, set the record-breaking time. He beat the previous record of six minutes and 11.1 seconds by nearly a minute. It was set in 1983 by a Porsche 956 during qualifying for that year's Nürburgring 1000km, according to British magazine Autocar.

Porsche made numerous modifications to the 919 before sending it to the 'Ring. Since the car doesn't need to comply with regulations, the firm's engineers were able to make numerous aerodynamic changes to increase downforce by 53 percent. They also lowered its weight to 1,871 pounds, a figure that makes it nearly 200 pounds lighter than a Mitsubishi Mirage, the lightest car sold new in America.

5:19.55 mins @Timo_Bernhard @nuerburgring Nordschleife #919tribute pic.twitter.com/8EGv3NOxHr

— Porsche LMP1 Team (@Porsche_Team) June 29, 2018

The aptly-named 919 Evo carries on with a gasoline-electric hybrid powertrain but it has received tweaks, too. The 2.0-liter V4 engine now makes 710 horsepower while the electric motor contributes an additional 433 horsepower.

Porsche recently announced plans to take the 919 on what it calls a tribute tour. The 'Ring record is one of many stops the car will make as it travels around the world; its next stop is at the Goodwood Festival of Speed in England. It will never race again, though. Porsche, like sister company Audi, decided to shutter its LMP1-spec endurance racing program to focus on Formula E.