The main focus of the new Audi R8 LMS appears to be safety. The R8 LMS not only meets the new GT3 safety standards that will be introduced in 2016, but also meets crash test requirements.
The new Audi R8 LMS is lighter and safer than ever before. It features even more race car technology, clearly improved aerodynamics and, as a result, provides customers with an efficient concept. The modified structure of the front end and CFRP crash element at the rear is being used for the first time. The Audi Protection Seat PS 1 that will be used in the R8 LMS in the future has been setting seating technology standards in the LMP class for years. It is connected to the chassis for increased stiffness. A quickly adjustable foot lever system and a height and length adjustable safety steering column allow versatile adjustment to the various drivers. A rescue opening in the roof as used in DTM race touring cars is now being introduced in a GT3 race car for the first time. After an accident, it allows the driver’s helmet to be lifted in a way that avoids straining the spinal column.
Tipping the scales at 1,225 kg, the car features an intelligent material mix of aluminum in the Audi Space Frame (ASF), a structural CFRP component and steel roll cage, all of which make the chassis about 30 kg lighter. Power comes from a modified version of the 5.2 liter V10 engine from the production car which produces 577 hp and is mated to a completed new six-speed sequential transmission with paddle shifters.
The new aerodynamic concept of the Audi R8 LMS for the first time includes a fully lined underfloor and a conceptually integrated rear diffusor. As a result, the dimensions of the rear wing can be reduced without corresponding increase of aerodynamic drag. The wheel well, which are open rearwards via a larger cross-section, contribute to improved airflow. The airflow rate and cooling area of the radiator at the front have increased by ten percent to handle maximum outside air temperatures.
The new model will have its racing debut at the 24 hour races at the Nurburgring (May 16-17) and at Spa (July 25-26). Quattro GmbH, which develops and assembles the race cars, will begin taking customer orders in the second half of the year, with first deliveries expected by the end of 2015.