Porsche patents active rear diffuser

Porsche active rear aero diffuser

Porsche active rear aero diffuser

While the horsepower wars continue, automakers are searching elsewhere to see where precious time can be shaved off of a hot lap. Porsche, in particular, is looking to redefine the rear diffuser.

New patents published on April 27, 2017, with the United States Patent and Trademark Office show a rear active aerodynamics system replacing a traditional diffuser. Per Porsche, current active diffusers already exist, but they are “highly cumbersome with regard to installation and integration in the underbody region.”

Porsche active rear aero diffuser

Porsche active rear aero diffuser

The new design, shown in patent sketches, would move the diffuser directly below the bumper, only to be seen when it’s in use. At other times, it would be hidden, thanks to a concave shape, allowing the aero functions to blend right into the car.

Porsche active rear aero diffuser

Porsche active rear aero diffuser

The active rear diffuser would push air along a section of the tail and Porsche even seems to imagine the possibility of multiple flaps that function independently. However, Porsche won’t be first to the party.

Lamborghini has already utilized a similar system in the Huracán Performante, which helped the Italian supercar run a 6:52.01 time on the Nürburgring. The active aero system, called Aerodinamica Lamborghini Attiva (ALA), utilizes active flaps in the front and rear to reduce drag and divert air to the appropriate places. It can also focus traction over the inner wheels during cornering. Even the C7 Corvette looks to be in for an active aero system at some point, likely with the upcoming ZR1.

Porsche’s system doesn’t look as all encompassing as Lamborghini’s effort, but it will surely have similar effects. The potential is only heightened when combining the aerodynamic capabilities with Porsche’s active rear wings.

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