Saturday, February 27, 2010

Audi's diesel-powered R10

Remember Audi's diesel-powered R10 TDI sports-prototype, which won the Le Mans 24 Hours last month? Well, the brits decided to put it against a Harrier GR7 "Jump Jet" multi-role combat aircraft in a race at RAF Wittering in England yesterday (6 July). If you think the Harrier gave it a beating, guess again….

Although the R10 didn’t actually win in the standing one-kilometre race, it gave the Harrier a scare as the Jet won just by one-tenth of a second !

The Audi, the first diesel-engined sportscar to win the famous Le Mans race, was quicker off the line - despite the R10 TDI being designed to start races from a "rolling" as opposed a "standing" start and faster to 150mph than the aircraft.

But the Harrier, piloted by Flight Lieutenant Pete Keenlyside, ultimately just beat the Audi to the 1km by literally a "nose" before the jet took off in a spectacular vertical climb.

Audi R10 driver, Allan Mcnish, comments: "I had a practice run against the Harrier moments before the race ‘proper’ and I came very close to beating it - it was a very close run contest. It was essentially a ‘fun’ race but when a racing driver and a pilot get together it quickly becomes serious. For our diesel-powered Audi, which we didn’t modify or prepare specifically for this event in any way, to come so close to beating a Harrier jet-fighter I believe was a tremendous achievement once again for TDI power."

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