Audi is starting the 2015 season with a thoroughly revised R18 e-tron quattro. In the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) and in the Le Mans 24 Hours as the season’s pinnacle event, Audi is going to compete with a hybrid sports car in the 4-megajoule class.
Audi e-tron vehicles seem to be improving on an almost monthly basis and these advancement in technologies will transfer over to the production vehicles over the coming years.
A twofold quantity of hybrid energy, fundamentally revised aerodynamics, the next step in lightweight design and a lot of detailed work characterise the fifth generation of the Audi R18. “The possibilities of the revolutionary regulations that have been in effect for LMP sports cars since 2014 are far from having been fully used. The rules harbour so much potential that there is room for future developments,” says Jörg Zander, Audi Sport’s new Head of Engineering. “We expect that the technological progress resulting from the fierce competitive pressure exerted by four automobile manufacturers that are now involved will significantly improve lap times this season – while concurrently reducing fuel consumption.”
The new R18 e-tron quattro visually differs clearly from its predecessor even though its basic structure is closely akin to the previous model. The fresh look results from a new way of conducting airflow around and through the front end, in the area of the sidepods and at the rear of the LMP1 prototype. Large air inlets in the front wheel arches reduce aerodynamic drag of the body and have led to an all-new design of the headlights. The lighting units feature Matrix LED technology combined with Audi Laserlight – two innovations that improve active safety in road traffic and that Audi customers can now order for their production models as well.