The rate at which manufacturers are moving to produce electric vehicles is growing rapidly. It’s clearly the automotive industry’s future, and there’s a lot of scope to create many different vehicle typologies around the electrification trend. One such vision is the Porsche 904e Concept, an all-electric two-seat sports car designed for guilt-free driving pleasure.
Conceived by Tom Underhill and Mike Turner – two professional vehicle designers who’ve worked together for a number of years – the Porsche 904e Concept was inspired by the 904 Carrera GTS. The design references the clean volumes of the original while adding minimal electric details.
The pair started working on the project as an after-hours exercise in March 2020. Their purpose was just to have fun during the COVID19 lockdown period in the UK and create something cool together. Their work explores the heritage of the Porsche 904 and imagines what a future version would look like. They chose to make the car electric to inspire a new generation of zero emission car enthusiasts as well as the millions of established Porsche fans worldwide – offering tangible electric fun.
Turner and Underhill felt a lightweight two-seater sportscar powered by an all-electric performance-slanted drivetrain would be the next logical step for the German sports car manufacturer from Stuttgart. Their vision was to deliver a classic design focussed on simple driving pleasure and suited to competitive motorsport.
The Porsche 904e Concept design explores and defines two distinct (but closely related) concepts based on a common platform and design language – a refined production vehicle and raw racecar. The drivetrain was envisaged as an enhanced derivative of the current Taycan’s mechanicals – something that Porsche could theoretically put into production within the next two to three years.
Using a back-to-basics approach, the duo didn’t want to create an exotic, expensive supercar that was heavily reliant on fly-by-wire technology and over-riding driver assistance devices. Instead, the concept aims to be simple and straightforward, promoting driver skill and intuition over outright dynamic performance.
The 904e Concept racecar was imagined as a logical entry point into the world of competitive motorsport – launched as a factory-sponsored race series open to professionals and privateers. Images have been produced showing the cars in action on the track – battling wheel-to-wheel around famous circuits, featuring iconic teams and liveries that draw influence from Porsche’s Racing heritage.
The whole project gives a superb insight into the process of developing a concept from initial 2D sketches into a resolved Alias 3D model and authoring final vRED renders that convey the emotion, character and attention to detail of a physical concept.
It’s clear Turner and Underhill had a lot of fun exploring numerous design iterations and making on-going refinements to their concept. The project is available to review in detail on Behance, focussed around three specific folders, with supporting commentary outlining their key steps and thought process. Visit the links below for more information: