Audi enters Diesel into Le Mans
December 13, 2005 5:17 AM   Subscribe

When most of us think motorsports, we don't think Diesel. But the Vorsprung durch technik guys decided that a 5-liter V12 dual-turboed oil burner would be a good idea for the Le Mans and other racing series. The monstrosity is officially launched today (in English)
posted by SharQ (33 comments total)
Let me be the first to say that the 5-liter V12 dual-turboed oil burner link goes to metafilter!
posted by kenaman at 5:24 AM on December 13, 2005

I didn't realize Metafilter had such a monster under the hood. Is that the JRun 5000, or 5500?
posted by thanotopsis at 5:26 AM on December 13, 2005

"There are no visual signs that a diesel power unit is at work in the back of the R10."

Apart, of course, from the "TDI Power" and "V-Power Diesel" labels plastered all over it.

Yes, I know that's not what they meant, but it's what they said.
posted by twine42 at 5:29 AM on December 13, 2005

Metafilter: A 5-liter V12 dual-turboed oil burner.
posted by Cookiebastard at 5:30 AM on December 13, 2005

Snark out the way, it would be incredibly cool if Audi could still beat all comers after switching to diesel engines.
posted by twine42 at 5:34 AM on December 13, 2005

Hmm. Might see a diesel in Gran Turismo 5 after all...
posted by Dipsomaniac at 5:47 AM on December 13, 2005

This is too cool.

Does anyone know what (if any) differences exist between 'race' diesel and regular?
posted by saladin at 6:07 AM on December 13, 2005

I remember reading about a golf tdi racing car VW did with superchips in the UK.

Essentially all they did was run a bigger turbo and a custom map to a stock engine and it pumped out well in excess of 200bhp and then millions of torques (whatever they are lol)

So I imagine there isnt much difference between a race diesel and regular diesels.
posted by 13twelve at 6:18 AM on December 13, 2005

[I removed the blank link in the FPP, drop it into the thread if you find it later]
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:21 AM on December 13, 2005

More info (in English!):

This is cool on so many levels... The direct injection tech that Audi (and I'm sure other manufacturers) has been using on their race cars has filtered down to the mass market, and there's plenty of gains in power and fuel effeciency. It'd be nice to see Audi bring a high performance turbodiesel to the States.
posted by kableh at 6:34 AM on December 13, 2005

I remember reading about a golf tdi racing car VW did with superchips in the UK.

This car? Looks like it's about 50% more powerful than the stock version.

Diesels have been a race platform in Europe for a while, although in a somewhat different style. I wonder, is there a race series that promotes low emissions? That's one place where diesels could stand a lot of improvement.
posted by Western Infidels at 6:36 AM on December 13, 2005

posted by NewBornHippy at 6:47 AM on December 13, 2005

I thought this was going to be about a change of career for the "actor" Vin Diesel. Oh well.
posted by hnnrs at 6:52 AM on December 13, 2005

Other race forms also have diesel classes.
posted by Harald74 at 6:56 AM on December 13, 2005

Volkswagen/Audi have such great diesel powerplants that would be so wonderful to have in the United States, but alas, for a multitude of reasons, we won't get most of them. Anyone driven the beast V10 TDI in the Touareg? Incredible powerplant. Even Volkswagen/Audi's low displacement TDIs are a freaking hoot to drive in Europe. *sigh* I will continue to dream..
posted by tgrundke at 6:58 AM on December 13, 2005

The Touareg diesel is also used in the Dakar rally.
posted by Harald74 at 7:00 AM on December 13, 2005

I'd always wondered how the Batmobile would fare at Le Mans.
posted by you just lost the game at 7:02 AM on December 13, 2005

Dipsomaniac - The Mark IV VW Golf 1.9TDi appeared in the European GT2 so it's not too odd to expect. 13twelve - torque is twisting force. The easiest way to think of it when discussing cars is horsepower = top speed, torque = acceleration. You can find a fairly easy to understand explanation here.
posted by longbaugh at 7:24 AM on December 13, 2005

The Deisel cars may get good gas milage, but they polute like motherfuckers. The Jetta TDI, getting milage comparable to a Prius, puts out as much polution as a large SUV per mile driven. Thats why volkswagon dosn't put out huge engined deisels in the US. We have much stricter air quality laws.
posted by delmoi at 7:39 AM on December 13, 2005

And it's not like you can't make powerful gasoline engines.
posted by delmoi at 7:41 AM on December 13, 2005

If this thing is anywhere near as good as the R8 it replaces ...
posted by Relay at 7:57 AM on December 13, 2005

"it's got nothing to do with your Vorsprung durch technik, you know."
posted by shoepal at 8:32 AM on December 13, 2005

Western Infidels - yeah that car.

longbaugh - lol I knew what torque was - I was sorta quoting Jeremy Clarkson.

Its the torque gains of the TDI thats impressive over similar sized petrol engines.

And I wish you people would stop talking about the Prius like its anything other than a trumpt up marketting excercise by Toyota. Top Gear tested it against a 1.4 TDI made by some other ricer and a battery/hydrogen car. The Prius was the least fun, the slowest, had the lowest mpg and just generally wasnt anything special.
posted by 13twelve at 8:36 AM on December 13, 2005

To my eternal shame, I have a Volkswagen TDI Polo effort. It's so tiny, only 130 bhp, but with that sixth gear it is amazing. Quite the efficiency with consumption, too.

This link does not surprise me. It is not a monstrosity if it's compared to some other 'cars' out there. Although, I wonder if it's a bit louder...
posted by gsb at 9:18 AM on December 13, 2005

When I first read about a diesel at Le Mans my first thought was *whhhhaaaaaaahhhh! ! !*. Then I saw 'Audi'. Then I thought, 'Well better dust off the first place podium spot for Audi this year. . .*
posted by mk1gti at 9:46 AM on December 13, 2005

GSB - no shame in that - join UK-Polos. Yours can be chipped to 150bhp (assuming your in a mk6/7 1.9 TDI).

The 1.9 TDI in your Polo alot of the VW/Audi range from 1997 when the PD (pumpe duse) thing came in, is a cracking engine. I did 66mpg on a 300 mile motorway journey - most of which was between 85 and 90 mph.

And on the move the chipped TDI Golfs can leave Subarus for dead (untill a corner..)

And theres 1.9 TDI mk4 Golf with 186 bhp I think - thats otherwise standard - doing 0-60 in just under 6 seconds. While still returning upwards of 50mpg on the motorway.
posted by 13twelve at 9:51 AM on December 13, 2005

Hasn't the pollution issue being mitigated somewhat with new catalysts/filters/emission controls? I read somewhere, I think on MeFi, even, that we don't see more diesel cars over here in the US because of the sulfur content of diesel fuel.
posted by kableh at 10:13 AM on December 13, 2005

One question not answered on their website is if it comes equipped with a CB radio and Yosemite Sam mudflaps...
posted by AaronRaphael at 10:20 AM on December 13, 2005

Although, I wonder if it's a bit louder...

"The experience for drivers and spectators used to screaming small displacement V8s will be unique - the diesel power band lies between 3,000 and 5,000 rpm. Equipped with diesel-particulate exhaust filters, the engine is said to be so quiet that the drivers can’t hear it when the car’s up to speed, while spectators and photographers will miss not only the howl of the engine, but also the off-throttle exhaust flames that have become a feature of night-time endurance racing."

[according to autoblog]
posted by Relay at 11:00 AM on December 13, 2005

I just with the US Army would release their diesel KLR 650 to the public. Could climb walls if one had that engine and sticky tires.
posted by five fresh fish at 11:14 AM on December 13, 2005

13twelve, thanks for the link. Mine is a Mark IV, but the idea of upgrading to 150 bhp seems a little excessive. Quite happy with the nippy wee thing.

Currently, a full tank gives me around 800 kM (497 miles), not too sure about any other stats but that consumption is a huge difference from my previous motor.
posted by gsb at 11:19 AM on December 13, 2005

delmoi, is that pollution based on European or American Diesel formulation. I thought a lot of Diesel's problems in the US were due to a formulation that produces a lot more particulates than the European.
posted by BrotherCaine at 6:32 PM on December 13, 2005

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