Friday, May 3, 2013

R18 vs R18: Long-Tail vs Sprint - 2013 Audi R18 e-tron quattro

By Johan Laubscher

Round two of the FIA World Endurance Championship is taking place at Spa this weekend. Audi is running three cars at the event, two normal 2013 Audi R18 e-tron quattro cars (in sprint configuration) and one Audi R18 e-tron quattro in the new 2013 Le Mans low-downforce “long-tale” specification.

The #1 and #2 Audi R18 e-tron quattros are fitted with the sprint configuration, similar to what was seen at Sebring and Silverstone, whereas #3 has been fitted with the new “long-tail” low downforce bodywork.

Spa offers the first opportunity to compare the two sets of 2013 R18 specification. The rear end of the cars is where the major differences lie, in terms of the “long-tale”. As per the last two years the major difference at the front, between the low and high downforce (sprint) setups, is the shape of the front fender. The sprint, high downforce, setup has a smooth contour versus the low downforce setup which has an almost squared shape / step on the lower portion of the fender. It should also be noted that the two high downforce cars at Spa are fitted with different dive planes between the fenders and the nose, the dive planes at Sebring and Silverstone were split, whereas the versions fitted to the cars at Spa are not spit, similar to the low downforce configuration.

The first set of Audi press photos from Spa offer a great chance to visually compare the two versions this weekend. The photo have been included below: 

Photo credit: Audi Sport Media