The first Hybrid Vehicle
by Dr. Ferdinand Porsche

1899 Lohner Porsche


Jacob Lohner & Co in Vienna, Austria produced electric cars from 1898 to 1906.
Ferdinand Porsche, one of Lohner´s employees developed a drive system based on fitting an electric motor to each front wheel without transmissions (hub mounted).
Vehicles of this type were known as Lohner-Porsches.

Here is a picture of a racing version of the front wheel driven, petrol-electric Lohner "Porsche". This vehicle was entered in the 1900 "Semmering" race and is driven by Dr. Porsche him self.

1900 racing Lohner Porsche

Lohner produced a number of hybrid petrol- electric cars. That is, with a petrol (gasoline US) engine driving a generator to produce the electricity to drive the electric motors.

Ferdinand Porsche may well have invented the 4 wheel drive. -And, yes you guessed correctly, the first 4x4 or 4 wheel drive vas a Hybrid Vehicle.

4x4 Lohner Porche

The first 4 Wheel Drive - a Hybrid Vehicle!

While the Lohner-Porsche technology was reliable, it was not competitive with conventional petrol-engined cars. Production costs where higher.
Production of Hybrid cars seized in 1906 although Lohner produced Lohner-Stoll trolley buses for several years on.