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With the 24 Hours of Le Mans coming up, an announcement is expected to come stating new regulations for the 2014 season.
A few weeks ago, a trailer for Audi‘s Truth in 24 II: Every Second Counts documentary was unleashed onto the Internet packed with plenty of high-speed action at arguably the world’s most famous race. Now you can grab your favorite Apple device and download the film for free on iTunes.
The German automaker claimed a 1-2-3-4 finish, with its R18 Ultra taking first and third, and the diesel hybrid e-tron quattro taking second and fourth. So at least for one race, diesel has triumphed over diesel hybrid, but Spa Francorchamps was still a very impressive debut for the new R18 e-tron quattro race car. In fact, the pair of hybrid race cars actually dominated the action initially before a strategic tire change gave the R18 Ultra an advantage.
The data gained from the successful outing of the R18 e-tron quattro models will play a pivotal role for Audi as it heads to the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Toyota originally planned on debuting it TS030 hybrid race car at the same event at Spa Francorchamps, but had to postpone it due to a major accident. Audi will not only have a victory under its belt heading to the 24 Hours of Le Mans, but a ton of data and experience with its race cars.
It almost makes sense for automakers and design firms to develop products together given all the effort that goes into making a car, at least that’s what it seems Mercedes-Benz this thinking.
It unveiled a furniture line earlier this week and now German automaker Audi has teamed up with Clemens Weisshaar and Reed Kram on its “R18 Ultra Chair.”
It’s been three years since Audi’s first Truth in 24 aired to document the team’s 2008 running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. A sequel is now in the works, which will be a film on Audi’s 2011 Le Mans victory.
Packed with drama, the 2011 Le Mans victory was a fantastic choice to showcase the race. Two-time champ Allan McNish had his Audi demolished only just an hour into the race and at the eighth hour, the Number 1 Audi racecar careened into a guardrail, splitting it into two pieces.
It took the next 16 hours of meticulous driving by the No. 2 Audi racecar to claim the checkered flag in the fourth closest Le Mans race in 79 years.
According to a forum member on ten-tenths.com, the film should be finalized in the next eight weeks. We’ll anxiously await its debut.
Allan McNish’s chances of a third overall victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans were over in the first hour of the race, after a spectacular crash destroyed his car and looked to have perhaps ended his driving days forever. Miraculously, however, McNish managed to walk away from the incident seemingly unharmed. The same goes for bystanders who avoided the flying shrapnel of the Audi R18 race car as it slammed into the tire wall after clipping a Ferrari on the Dunlop Curves.
Watch the video after the jump:
Audi fans will be able to get closer to all the race action for this year’s Le Mans by logging into the company’s internet channels.
On their Twitter and Facebook pages, you’ll be able to get real-time video and telemetry of the race as it happens, so fans can feel closer to the action, even if they weren’t able to travel to France in time for this weekend’s race. Fans can tune into www.twitter.com/Audi__Sport and www.facebook.com/AudiSport to get all the action. Plus the free “Audi Sport” iPhone app will offer a live ticker.
Audi is campaigning three all-new R18 TDI’s this year, a car that has shown much promise in testing, and given Audi’s prominence in this sport, they are the favorites to take another victory this year. The drivers running in car number “1” are last year’s winners Timo Bernhard, Romain Dumas and Mike Rockenfeller. Car number “2” is driven by Marcel Fässler, André Lotterer and Benoît Tréluyer. In car number “3” Dindo Capello, Le Mans record winner Tom Kristensen and Allan McNish are taking turns at the wheel.
For those who prefer to watch the race action on television, Speed TV will be broadcasting nearly 24-hours of this race live.
FIA President Jean Todt will drop the flag at 3 p.m. (France local time) this Saturday to start this year’s event. Watch it love here: http://www.audi-microsites.com/lemans/
With the anticipation growing for Audi‘s R18 LMP1 race car to hit the track competitively, Audi is probably wishing it’ll happen sooner themselves. After losing out at the 12 Hours of Sebring, Audi may be looking forward to getting the R18 out on the track in order to replace the current R15 race cars.
Two of the R18s were first test-driven at Sebring along with an R15 as a control car and all ten Audi racing drivers were involved in the testing program. Currently they’re on their way to Europe and will be torn apart and analyzed by Audi Sport in Ingolstadt.
Their next appearance will be at the famous Le Mans racetrack and will compete for the first time in the six hour race in Spa-Francorchamps.
Official press release available after the break.