Audi are no strangers to FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) or the Le Mans 24 Hours prototype class. In fact in the last 13 years they have only lost Le Mans twice. But each year they go away and let the Audi technicians unleash their “vorsprung der technik” on the next ultimate race car. The other teams much quake in there race boots when they hear Audi is about to unveil there latest offering, all thinking what mind blowing tech will they have this year.
Audi have not disappointed them, keeping just the name the same, i’m serious thats all they kept from last year. They redeveloped the car from the ground up. The new hybrid sports car appears like a continuous further development past two winning cars. However, due to the new LMP1 regulations that will come into effect in 2014, Audi Sport factually redeveloped every single component.
In the new Technical Regulations, a large number of principal definitions, which concern the powertrain, body dimensions, safety and aerodynamics, were re-determined. With the new R18, Audi Sport has opted for a similar concept as in the past – albeit with innovative detailed solutions and an additional hybrid system.
- A further developed V6 TDI mid-engine powers the rear wheels
- e-tron quattro hybrid system at the front axle (ERS-K – Energy Recovery System Kinetic, a system to store kinetic energy)
- Optimized flywheel energy storage system
- Hybrid system with an electric turbocharger in the internal combustion engine (ERS-H – Energy Recovery System Heat, a system that stores energy converted from heat)
Audi are as they say, Doing it like a Boss. Regulations may change, but they will keep developing what they see as the ultimate racecar worthy of the iconic Le Mans title.