NEWS: Audi R8 e-tron Sets Nürburgring Nordschleife EV Lap Record
Audi's exciting new R8 e-tron has just set a new lap record at the ultra-challenging Nürburgring Nordschleife for electrically powered production vehicles. Racing driver, Markus Winkelhock put in a time of 8:09.099 minutes on the 12.92-mile track, in the new all-electric sports car with 280 kW (equivalent to approximately 380PS)... adding another Green Hell accolade to their overall wins at the 24-hour races at the Nürburgring (oh, an and Le Mans!). "The R8 e-tron has given a magnificent demonstration of its potential on the toughest race track in the world," said Michael Dick, AUDI AG Board Member for Technical Development. Dick, who completed a fast lap himself in the R8 e-tron, added: "The record-setting drive confirmed that we are on the right track. To us, electric mobility has never been about sacrifice, but rather is about emotion, sportiness and driving pleasure."A comparison with the current record lap driven by a production car with a conventional combustion engine shows just how impressive the 8:09.099-minute time really is. The record time of 7:11.57 minutes was achieved by a Gumpert Apollo Sport, which is powered by a 700PS Audi V8 petrol engine. The all-electric Audi R8 e-tron was just over one minute behind that. Impressive...
The drive system of the Audi R8 e-tron that Markus Winkelhock drove to the world record is identical to that of the road-going model that will enter production towards the end of the year. The car’s electric motors generate a combined output of 280 kW and 820 Nm of torque; more than 4,900 Nm (3,614.05 lb-ft) is distributed to the rear wheels virtually from a standing start. The Audi R8 e-tron accelerates from zero to 62mph in just 4.6 seconds. Its top speed is normally limited to 124mph (and Markus Winkelhock drove two fast laps in one go in a second R8 e-tron that was limited to 124mph, recording 8:30.873 and 8:26.096 minutes, both well under the important nine-minute threshold); 155mph was approved for the record-setting lap. It has a range of 133 miles, although most likely not at this sort of race pace. And it weighs in at just 1,780 kilograms, despite the large battery, thanks to an all aluminium body.
"The record drives were a fantastic experience for me," said Markus Winkelhock. The 32-year-old, who lives near Stuttgart, has a high standard for comparison – the Audi R8 LMS ultra, in which he, along with Marc Basseng, Christopher Haase and Frank Stippler, won the 24-hour race at the Nürburgring a few weeks ago. "Of course, the R8 e-tron is a production car, not a racing car with the assistance of aerodynamics," Winkelhock emphasised. "But with its low centre of gravity and rear biased weight distribution, it brings with it a lot of sporty qualities. The torque with which the electric motors propel the car uphill beats everything that I know – even if they make hardly any noise in the process, which at the start was really a completely new experience for me. In places where I really need traction, the torque vectoring – the displacement of the torque between the powered wheels – really helps me."
Michael Dick proudly summed up events after the record-setting drive at the Nürburgring. "Within just a few weeks we’ve taken on some big challenges and in the process we’ve shown that we are at the forefront with all of our drive concepts," he said, adding: "We won the 24-hour race at the Nürburgring in May in the Audi R8 LMS ultra with a ten-cylinder engine. In mid-June we triumphed at the 24 Hours of Le Mans with the Audi R18 e-tron quattro – the first overall victory for a hybrid-electric vehicle in the toughest race in the world. And now we’ve set another record with the all-electric-drive R8 e-tron on the most demanding track there is."