• Concept stage for new Audi sports prototype largely completed.
• Close cooperation with fellow group brand Porsche.
• First race planned for January 2023 at the Daytona 24 Hours.
• For more motoring stories, visit Wheels24.
Audi will return to familiar surroundings at the 24 Hour of Le Mans, and to sports prototype racing with an electrified sports car in the 2023 season.
The successor to the R18 is being built in close cooperation with the brand's sister company Porsche.
"A great strength of the Volkswagen Group is the collaboration of the brands in the development of road cars. We are now transferring this proven model to motorsport. Nevertheless, the new sports prototype will be just as much a genuine Audi as the Audi RS e-tron GT1 that was launched recently and has also been developed on a platform shared with Porsche," says Julius Seebach, Managing Director Audi Sport GmbH and responsible for Motorsport at Audi.
The sports prototype for the new LMDh category is currently being created at Audi Sport in parallel with the innovative SUV for the Dakar Rally.
Ready to go
"Our goal is for the first prototype to be on its wheels early next year and to complete its roll-out in the first quarter. An intensive test program will follow in 2022. The first race is planned for the Daytona 24 Hours (USA) in January 2023," says Andreas Roos, who is responsible for all factory motorsport commitments at Audi Sport.
With Audi set to return to the 24 Hour of Le Mans, do you think it will affect Toyota's dominance in the race? Please email us, or share your thoughts in the comments section below.
"The Audi R8 was not only the most successful prototype of its time from 2000 to 2006, with 63 victories in 80 races, but it was also very successful in the hands of our customers and easy for the teams to handle," Roos continues.
Audi holds the distance record at the Le Mans 24 Hours and has won the world's most important endurance race 13 times. Audi customer teams scored overalls victories at Le Mans in 2004 and 2005.