Audi R18 celebrates world premiere in MunichAudi has created its most powerful and efficient racing car, ready for the 2016 motorsport season.
Shown off to the world during its premiere at the Audi Training Centre in Munich, this re-designed R18 features advanced aerodynamics, a next level lightweight design and an efficiency optimized TDI engine with a hybrid system consisting of lithium-ion batteries for energy storage, all under the black and red paintwork.
The R18 has been an incredibly successful car for Audi, winning four successive Le Mans 24 Hour races from 2011-2014 and the 2012 & 2013 FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC).
With both runs halted, the LMP1-class prototype has been radically changed to reverse the fortunes for the 2016 WEC, starting at Silverstone on April 17th, and the challenging 24hr Le Mans race.
Although the cars will still run a 4-litre twin turbo V6 diesel engine, the hybrid system has seen the most change. The R18 previously ran a flywheel-based energy recovery and deployment system, but has switched to a lithium-ion battery for 2016. The system is now rated to 6 megajoules (MJ) instead of 4, allowing for an increase in available electric power. Audi believes that with equivalency formulae, the 6MJ diesel will be competitive with the 8MJ petrol cars of its main rivals.
Unusually, Audi has decided to tackle Le Mans on June 18th-19th with just two cars instead of the usual three or four of recent years. Alongside sister company Porsche, which took the 2015 WEC and Le Mans titles, Audi's agreed to a two-car line-up with cost efficiency in mind.
For more information, contact your local Inchcape Audi site.