Audi’s 2016 R18 Hybrid LMP1 car is a total BEAST
Audi has just unveiled its challenger for the 2016 FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) and the Le Mans 24 Hours – and it looks incredible. Called the R18, Audi’s latest racing car might look like the Batmobile, but it actually uses incredibly efficient hybrid technology.
The R18’s V6 diesel and hybrid powertrain puts out a combined 1,000hp of power and, like the hybrid systems used in F1 engines, energy can be recaptured when braking.
The World Endurance Championship is widely regarded as the greenest championship in racing – with regulations forcing manufacturers to get more and more efficient. In 2016, teams will be forced to used ten megajoules less per lap at Le Mans. The result? Audi is developing technology that’ll be even more relevant for its road cars.
For 2016, Audi is switching to the 6-megajoule class and, that means the new hybrid system will collect over 50% more energy when braking than last year. The result? Despite producing around 1,000hp of combined power, this year’s R18 uses 10% less fuel than last year’s race car.
“The result is a race car that manages energy even more effectively than before. This is an objective we’re pursuing for our road-going automobiles as well,” says head of Audi Motorsport Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich.
“This type of motorsport continues to set an example for automotive engineering. For Audi, production relevance has been a core topic of all racing programmes for 35 years.”
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