Audi open about propulsion systems

Audi has given the clearest hint yet that its R18 will accept alternative propulsion systems, but said it will not be limited to a KERS-style hybrid power train

Audi open about propulsion systems

They will also be closely related to production car technologies rather than the sport-specific KERS solution employed in Formula 1.

"The basic concept provides for electrification of its [the R18's] drive," said Michael Dick, Audi's director of technical development. "However, we will only incorporate it when the technology has been proven, and it will also be carried over to serial production."

Ulrich Baretzky, Audi Sport's head of engine technology, confirmed that they are looking beyond conventional hybrid systems.

"One of the reasons we decided to have a V6 engine [in the R18] was to have enough space and the maximum variability to integrate engine recovery systems of any kind or shape," Baretzky told AUTOSPORT.

"Energy is going to become more precious than it has in the past. We are going to have to change our minds completely about how to use it. This is also true for Formula 1 and it was very courageous of Jean Todt and the FIA to insist on it [in the putative 2013 engine regulations].

"People will lose interest in wasting energy, in the boring negligence of the needs of the time. It's a clear responsibility we have to the spectators and the public to use this special role we have in motorsport to showcase solutions that are also viable for them.

"I don't like to use the word 'hybrid'. I prefer to look at complete energy recovery systems which include every kind of energy efficiency technology. A brake energy recovery system like KERS is just one of them, for sure not the only one, and maybe not the best one."

shares
comments
Bourdais: Key to avoid over-driving

Previous article

Bourdais: Key to avoid over-driving

Next article

Davidson: Rules make traffic harder

Davidson: Rules make traffic harder
Load comments
Inside the Le Mans finish too barmy for Hollywood Plus

Inside the Le Mans finish too barmy for Hollywood

Team WRT has been at the forefront of GT racing for years and made a successful move to prototypes for 2021, capped by an LMP2 win on its Le Mans debut. It could've been even better had the race been one lap shorter, when its cars ran 1-2, but the stranger-than-fiction reality has spurred the team to reach greater heights

Le Mans
Oct 16, 2021
The standout memories of Le Mans 2021 Plus

The standout memories of Le Mans 2021

OPINION: With four of the five Hypercar entries unproven in a 24-hour race, it would not have been unexpected for at least one of them to suffer serious reliability trouble. That they all managed to make it through the race relatively unscathed, says GARY WATKINS, was something of a surprise.

Le Mans
Aug 24, 2021
Why Toyota's Le Mans victory was not as simple as it looked Plus

Why Toyota's Le Mans victory was not as simple as it looked

Toyota scored its fourth Le Mans 24 Hours victory and a 1-2, with the #7 car of Kamui Kobayashi, Mike Conway and Jose Maria Lopez beating the #8. But although it looked straightforward from the outside, Toyota faced serious problem that had to be solved with some quick-thinking and ingenuity

Le Mans
Aug 24, 2021
How overlooked Mazda produced one of Le Mans' greatest shocks Plus

How overlooked Mazda produced one of Le Mans' greatest shocks

The screaming rotary-engined Mazda 787 is regarded as one of the most popular Le Mans 24 Hours-winning cars, but until its surprise success on this day 30 years ago it was never regarded as a likely victor. But that reckoned without a new technical partner, some canny political manoeuvring and a rival's bizarre self-inflicted weakness

WEC
Aug 22, 2021
Can Toyota's #7 crew break its Le Mans curse? Plus

Can Toyota's #7 crew break its Le Mans curse?

One Toyota, normally with the number 7 on the side, always seems to attract the bad luck in the Le Mans 24 Hours. Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose Maria Lopez are hoping for a change in fortune this time around, but face significantly more unknowns than in recent years

Le Mans
Aug 19, 2021
Why Glickenhaus should be taken seriously on its Le Mans bow Plus

Why Glickenhaus should be taken seriously on its Le Mans bow

Many were quick to dismiss Glickenhaus when the boutique American sportscar firm's entry into the top class of the Le Mans 24 Hours was announced. It's all-new LMH racer, powered by an engine built by a rally specialist, goes in as the underdog against Toyota but the mathematical odds suggest that it has more than just a faint hope of success

Le Mans
Aug 18, 2021
The Asian underdog taking on the mighty GT factories at Le Mans Plus

The Asian underdog taking on the mighty GT factories at Le Mans

The rising HubAuto team steps up to GTE Pro at Le Mans this year for an ambitious bid to take on the three works giants – and has every reason to be optimistic of achieving its goal in becoming the first privateer on the podium since 2016

Le Mans
Aug 18, 2021
How 1971's benchmark Le Mans team lost with the best car Plus

How 1971's benchmark Le Mans team lost with the best car

The JW Automotive Engineering team won twice at the Le Mans 24 Hours with ageing Fords and were considered heavy favourites to add more victories to its tally after partnering with Porsche. But despite being armed with the all-conquering 917, this formidable combination was never as successful in real life as on the big screen

Le Mans
Aug 14, 2021