Audi reveals R18 TDI Le Mans car

Audi unveils striking new R18 TDI racing car ready for the 2011 Le Mans 24 hour race

Audi has unveiled its new R18 TDI racing car. It will compete in 2011’s Intercontinental Le Mans Cup (ILMC), the headline fixture of which is, of course, June’s 24 hours of Le Mans. Four-ringed sports cars have been racing at La Sarthe for over ten years now, with Audis picking up nine victories from 12 races. In 2010’s race, an Audi driving team was on all three steps of the podium after a stunning 1-2-3 result. The all-new R18 racer marks a significant departure from its predecessors, which include the Audi R10 TDI and Audi R15 TDI – for the first time, an Audi Le Mans racer boasts a closed cockpit, coupe body-style. It’s due to the increased importance of aerodynamics, brought on by smaller engines. The competition’s rules have been tweaked to see engine downsizing and smaller power outputs – V10s and V12s have been banned, for instance – meaning the R18 possesses a 3.7-litre V6 turbodiesel.  This is the biggest displacement diesels are allowed to boast, while petrol-powered engines are limited to 3.4-litres naturally aspirated, and just 2.0-litres turbocharged. Current LMP1 cars (the highest class, and the one in which the R18 will compete) will still be allowed to compete but only with significant restriction, either by added weight or smaller air restrictors. Further details on the R18 TDI’s powerplant, including its power and torque outputs, are as yet unrevealed. Audi is understandably keeping its cards close to its chest until the R18 first competitively turns a wheel.  That will be on May 8 2011 at the six hours of Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium. Audi’s entry in March’s opening round of the ILMC at Sebring will consist of upgraded versions of the outgoing R15 TDI, to provide maximum development time for the R18 ahead of the high-profile Le Mans race in June. Read about the R18’s predecessor, the Audi R15 TDI We drive the Audi R10 TDI, one of Le Mans’ most successful cars

Read about Audi's crushing 2010 Le Mans 24 hour result

Subscribe to evo magazine

Subscribe today to have every issue of evo delivered straight to you. You'll SAVE 39% on the shop price, and get evo for its original cover price for a whole year!

Join evo's Twitter, Facebook and YouTube pages

Most Popular

Visit/honda/civic-type-r/203112/honda-civic-type-r-gt-2020-review-still-king-of-the-hot-hatch-crop
Honda Civic Type-R hatchback

Honda Civic Type R GT 2020 review – still king of the hot hatch crop?

Subtle tweaks have made the Type R an even more formidable hot hatch, but we’re keen to try one again soon to understand fully the changes to the susp…
22 Sep 2020
Visit/bmw/m4/22869/all-new-bmw-m4-competition-revealed-next-generation-super-coupe-debuts
BMW M4

All-new BMW M4 Competition revealed – next generation super coupe debuts

The new BMW M4 Competition applies its war paint, but there’s no manual coming to the UK
23 Sep 2020
Visit/porsche/911/203110/porsche-911-rsr-v-gt3-r-v-gt3-cup-track-only-911s-driven
Porsche 911

Porsche 911 RSR v GT3 R v GT3 Cup - track-only 911s driven

They’re aimed at different levels of motorsport, but what exactly separates Porsche’s 911 RSR, GT3 R and GT3 Cup models, and what are they like to dri…
20 Sep 2020
Visit/bmw/m3-saloon/20529/all-new-bmw-m3-competition-revealed-an-icon-reborn
BMW M3 saloon

All-new BMW M3 Competition revealed – an icon reborn

This is the all-new BMW M3 Competition saloon which will join the M4 Competition coupe in BMW M’s new M3/4 family
23 Sep 2020