This is an old story. But the Audi team destoyed Le Mans this year in P1. Even though HP gets all the press, torque is your friend when it comes to racing. Try 650 HP and 1150 Nm (847 lbft) on for size.
I found this comment interesting, "Itís more than just a marketing opportunity for Audióthis entire racing program is an ďa-haĒ moment for the world and could be described as one of the most generous acts in the history of motorsports. Every manufacturer who will build and sell a performance diesel in America will do so on the back of Audiís R10 racing program."
LE MANS News Tuesday, 13th December 2005
Audi diesel marks 'biggest ever challenge'.
The V12 TDI diesel engine, which will propel the Audi R10 in the 2006 Le Mans 24 Hours, marks many motor racing 'firsts' - and breaks new engineering ground.
The totally new powerplant has a cubic capacity of 5.5 litres - the maximum permitted at Le Mans - sending Audi into previously unexplored diesel-engine terrain with power exceeding 650 hp and a massive torque of more than 1100 Newton metres.
"This engine is the specifically (for its size) most powerful diesel there is in the world and, up until now, the biggest challenge that Audi Sport has ever faced in its long history," explained Ulrich Baretzky, head of engine technology at Audi Sport. "There has never been anything remotely comparable. We started development with a clean sheet of paper."
The V12 TDI used in the R10 is the first Audi diesel engine with an aluminium crank case. The cylinder-bank angle is 90 degrees, while the engine has four valves per cylinder and twin overhead camshafts.
The fuel induction is made by a modern "Common Rail System". The injection pressure easily exceeds the 1600 bar achieved in production cars, while the ignition pressures also reach values never previously seen in any Audi engine.
The turbo pressure produced by the two Garrett turbochargers is limited by the regulations to 2.94 bars (absolute), while the diameter of both engine air intake restrictors is also restricted, to 2 x 39.9 millimetres.
The engine's power and the high torque are available to the driver practically from idling speed - a characteristic of diesel technology - with the usable power band between 3000 and 5000 revs per minute, much lower than racing petrol engines.
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Results of the 2006 running of the 24 Hrs. of Le Mans and reader comments