McLaren P1 Versus Porsche 918 Spyder – EPA Ratings Differ Dramatically


McLaren P1

McLaren P1

We often find it interesting to look at the official EPA test results for similar plug-in electric cars.

Both the Porsche 918 Spyder and McLaren P1 are crazy expensive, plug-in hybrid hypercars.  By the numbers, these two cars would appear very similar, but the EPA ratings tell a different story:

As you’ll notice in the first graphic below, the Porsche 918 Spyder is far more efficient than the P1 when both vehicles have their gas engines firing.  The 918 returns 22 MPG combined, whereas the P1 manages only 17.

EPA Test Results For 2015 PHEVs

EPA Test Results For 2015 PHEVs

And look at the difference in annual fuel costs!  The 918 is listed at $2,050, whereas the P1 will cost you $3,250 to fuel per year.

EPA Test Results For 2015 PHEVs

EPA Test Results For 2015 PHEVs

And lastly (and perhaps the most telling as to how different these two cars are) is the electric-only range.  The 918 Spyder is listed at 12 miles in this category, whereas the P1 gets the goose egg, or zero.  While the p1 can theoretically go farther on a charge (up to 19 miles in the city, versus the Porsche’s 12.97), the electric-only range of the Spyder far exceeds that of the P1, likely due to the P1 occasionally firing the engine into action under even moderate acceleration.

EPA Test Results For 2015 PHEVs

EPA Test Results For 2015 PHEVs

The tale of two seemingly similar cars.  The EPA sees them as vastly different.

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9 Comments on "McLaren P1 Versus Porsche 918 Spyder – EPA Ratings Differ Dramatically"

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“The 918 is listed at $1,850…”

That is the Panamera. The 918 is shown as $2,050.

Fixed. Thanks. Yes way too expensive now!

“That is the Panamera. The 918 is shown as $2,050.”

Good catch…it looked affordable but it’s obviously over budget now…:).

$2,050 on such car seems difficult to do.
I bet you don’t drive such cars like you drive a Prius 🙂

An oil change on one these probably cast $2000. 😉

17mpg vs. 22mpg isn’t the relevant stat. It’s probably more like 8mpg, for the P1 on the track versus perhaps DOUBLE that, for the 918.

People don’t buy these cars to do EPA cycles 😉 They might, however, like to avoid the track-side >$5/gal gouging.

Meh… if you can afford either of these vehicles, plus the tow vehicle (you’re not seriously going to drive that on the street, are you?) then racing fuel is just another fee.

It’s like Hummers (NOT restyled Tahoes) selling more when gas prices went up in 2001, not fewer. Driving a Hummer became even more exclusive.

Looks like McLaren made the same mistake as BMW did with their i8: starting the engine immediately, whether it is needed or not, earning a big fat ZERO for EV miles.

Not a good user experience either to have to run the engine even just to shuffle cars around in the garage.


The difference is probably due to the fact that P1 doesn’t have regen where 918 has a heavy Regen capability…

Also, 918 engine has less HP than the P1 which is tunned different and geared differently.

Either way, 918 is a better overall car and still holds the crown on the rack for the best lap time.