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Thread: 2016 WEC, IWTSC, ELMS thread.

  1. #211
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    The new Audi R18

    For the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) and the Le Mans 24 Hours, Audi is emphasizing focal areas in the 2016 season: The Audi R18 that has been redesigned from scratch has almost nothing in common anymore with its predecessor. It features a more radical aerodynamics concept, including a new safety cell, its hybrid drive system is battery-operated for the first time, the V6 TDI engine has been revised, and new system solutions have been added. As a result, Audi’s LMP1 sports car is a vehicle that is more powerful and – once more – clearly more efficient than its predecessor. While the new R18 is Audi’s strongest race car to date, it consumes less fuel than any of the generations before it.


    The new Audi has been redesigned from scratch with almost nothing in common with its predecessor.

    The car features a more radical aerodynamic concept, including a new safety cell, its hybrid drive system is battery-operated for the first time, the V6 TDI engine has been revised too with multiple new systems added into the mix.

    As a result the new Audi is more powerful and more efficient than its predecessor, consuming less fuel than any of the generations before it.

    The combined power output of the TDI engine and hybrid system is more than 1,000 hp but with a 10% percent reduction in fuel consumption.

    With the 2016 regulations demanding a reduction of the upper limit for fuel consumption by 10 megajoules per lap at Le Mans the focus has been on efficiency:

    “The result is a race car that manages energy even more effectively than before. This is an objective we’re pursuing for our road-going automobiles as well,” says Head of Audi Motorsport Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich. “This type of motorsport continues to set an example for automotive engineering. For Audi, production relevance has been a core topic of all racing programs for 35 years.”

    All development engineers at Audi Sport were challenged to enhance the efficiency of the Audi R18.

    As a result of switching to the 6-megajoule class, the hybrid system now recovers 50 percent more energy.

    The car’s aerodynamics concept is fundamentally new. Nearly all vehicle systems have been refined or redesigned. Consequently, energy consumption decreases, the race car has become lighter, and allows for more favourable packaging of the component assemblies. This has resulted in an R18 which even visually clearly differs from its predecessor.

    New Aero

    The new Audi R18 is visually very different from its predecessors.

    The proportions of the front end and the cabin within the overall vehicle length have changed and the conspicuous nose of the race car is clearly slimmer than before.

    “The new proportions influence weight distribution and aerodynamics,” explains Jörg Zander, Head of Engineering at Audi Sport. “Our most important objective was to improve airflow.” At the front end, airflow has to be directed across the top of the race car and between the wheel wells, enter the cooling ducts through the body shell, and optimally approach the underfloor. “In this process, vortices must be avoided, as this costs energy,” says Zander.

    Undesirable vortices and turbulent flow reduce the energy in the airflow and increase resistance. The smaller the space which the monocoque occupies in this area the larger are the clearances for low-loss airflow.

    Thanks to the new proportions, the new Audi R18 directs airflow even more effectively to optimally approach the underfloor.

    At the rear, the air exits again through the diffuser. As a result, it produces a major portion of the downforce under the race car, which is beneficial in cornering. Audi developed a new monocoque, modified the proportions within the prescribed maximum length of 4,650 millimetres, and designed all the component assemblies accordingly.

    New as well are the dimensions and positions of the prescribed openings in the front wheel arches. They are intended to reduce undesirable aerodynamic lift effects in the case of lateral airflow. Their areas have been enlarged by 45 percent compared with the 2015 season.

    Chassis Changes

    Due to the new monocoque, the mounting points for the front suspension have significantly changed.

    To make them more compatible with the position of the drive shaft for the hybrid system, the new mounting points have been rearranged. Suspension kinematics have been significantly revised.

    Wishbones featuring a new design are now used for wheel guidance. The lift and roll spring-damper elements are actuated via pushrods at the front.

    The rear suspension kinematics has been optimised as well. As in the case of the previous-generation vehicle, the spring-damper elements are controlled using pullrods.

    Optimum balance of the race car in all speed ranges is guaranteed by balancers of the Linked Suspension System (LSS) in the chassis

    The transmission is a new design as well. Audi’s simulations revealed that the optimised engine allows a very good gear ratio spread with minimal rpm jumps even in combination with a six-speed instead of the previous seven-speed unit. As a result, the engineers managed to further reduce the weight of the transmission. In the other areas of the vehicle’s structure, Audi rigorously pursued its lightweight design approach as well, while retaining the high torsional stiffness of the chassis.

    In addition, new solutions for the actuators of individual systems of the Audi R18 help reduce weight. While in the previous-generation vehicle electrical actuators were still operating in the braking, transmission and engine systems, the new Audi R18 uses an all-new development of a high-pressure central hydraulic system. The regulations prescribe a minimum weight of 875 kilograms for the LMP1 hybrid sports cars. In spite of a more powerful and therefore necessarily heavier hybrid system, Audi does not exceed this limit.

    New Hybrid System

    Audi was the first manufacturer to win the Le Mans 24 Hours with an energy recuperation system, using a flywheel energy storage system from 2012 to 2015.

    For 2016 a battery will be accumulating the energy.

    Electrokinetic technology is being replaced by an electrochemical storage system.

    “The flywheel accumulator definitely proved viable for the lower energy classes,” explains Thomas Laudenbach, Head of Electrics, Electronics and Energy Systems at Audi Sport. “But due to the fact that we now have to process even more energy than before, a technology change suggested itself.”

    The previous flywheel accumulator guaranteed high power density. Now, favourable energy density has to be achieved as well, as Audi is switching to a higher hybrid energy class.

    Starting in the 2016 season, the amount of energy will increase by 50 percent to 6 megajoules. When comparing this level with the one from the 2014 season, the engineers have even tripled the amount of recuperated energy within this period of time.

    For the first time, Audi will be relying on a lithium-ion accumulator as the hybrid energy storage system. Since 2009, the batteries for the electrical system of Audi LMP1s have been based on this technology.

    The production-based cells of the new hybrid storage system use advanced and powerful cell chemistry and are serially connected.

    The system is located within the high-strength safety structure in the monocoque in their own cell.

    Electrical and electronic safety systems monitor various parameters – from individual cells through to the overall high-voltage system – and will intervene if necessary. The shutoff logic naturally includes crash detection.

    The energy stored by the system is generated by an MGU (Motor Generator Unit) at the front axle. The Audi R18 converts the rotary motion of the front wheels into electrical energy when the driver brakes before entering a turn and feeds it into the storage system. This way, the hybrid sports car utilizes energy that would otherwise be lost. If the race driver accelerates again on exiting the turn, the current flows in the opposite direction to power the MGU. As a result, the front axle of the R18 helps accelerate the race car again. A low-temperature cooling circuit, which is separate from the engine cooling system, cools the battery cells, MGU, and power electronics.

    From the 2016 season on, there will be a track-specific limitation imposed on power output in addition to the previous energy classes. Although the MGU may recuperate any desired amount of energy, it may now only supply 300 kW (408 hp) in the race at Le Mans.

    Audi has designed its MGU for an output of more than 350 kW (476 hp) in order to recover as much energy as possible. The reason is that even when braking at high speed, the braking phases of an LMP1 race car last only three to five seconds. The high system output helps efficiently recover the required energy. At Le Mans, the system may only supply 300 kW during subsequent acceleration. Accordingly, the energy from the hybrid system will be available for a longer period of time. This limit does not apply to the other FIA WEC rounds.

    By opting for the 6-megajoule class, Audi has presented its most powerful MGU so far. In 2012, Audi started with about 150 kW (204 hp) of electrical power output. To date, this level has far more than doubled. Conceptually, the previous and the new MGU are akin to each other. However, the power electronics, stator, and rotor are new developments. This generation of the hybrid drive system delivers high output and develops strong torque, as a result of which the loads acting on the components that transmit power to the front axle increase accordingly. Audi uses a limited slip differential at the front axle to transfer torque with minimal loss.

    Efficiency

    Whilst the developers of the hybrid drive system were allowed to increase output, the engine development team headed by Ulrich Baretzky was confronted with the opposite challenge for the 2016 season.

    The 4-litre V6 power-plant now receives less fuel, which initially reduces its output.

    Cionsider also that Audi switched to a higher hybrid energy class – and the regulations allocate less fuel to race cars which recuperate large amounts of energy.

    This aspect results in a minus figure in the power equation of about three percent.

    At the same time, another change is taking effect. With development pushing forward the pace of LMP1 technology and with faster and faster lap times the FIA, the WEC and the ACO have now allocated less fuel energy to the hybrid race cars.

    “This is a development which, as a manufacturer, we principally support in order to control the lap times,” says Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich.

    The basic concept of the V6 TDI engine dates to 2011. With its double-flow VTG mono turbocharger, 120-degree cylinder bank angle, the exhaust gas side within the V angle, and innovative detailed solutions the unit tends to be regarded as unusual. The initial displacement volume of 3.7 litres increased to four litres in 2014.

    “We’re now using the basic engine concept for the sixth consecutive year. This shows how sound the basic idea still is,” says Ulrich Baretzky. “Due to efficiency increases, we partially compensate for the lower amount of fuel.”
    Among other things, the turbocharger is now lighter and more efficient.

    Externally, the V6 TDI has changed as well. Individual components are now arranged differently in order to make room for the new aerodynamics concept. The prescribed limitation of the charge pressure to a factor of 4 does not change the engine’s torque of more than 850 Newton metres. The higher efficiency pays off, as the fuel cell capacity of the race car has been reduced further as well – by eight percent to 49.9 litres.

    The current V6 TDI consumes 32.4 percent less fuel than the first generation did in 2011.

    This progress is even more substantial in a comparison with the original year of 2006. Back then, Audi used TDI technology for the first time.

    Since the diesel-fuelled TDI technology was adopted Audi have claimed eight Le Mans victories, a distance record, plus two world championship titles.

    The 2016 car uses 46.4 percent less fuel at Le Mans. Still, it achieves lap times that are ten to 15 seconds better than a decade ago with aerodynamics, lightweight design and the powertrain all making major contributions.

    Safety

    Audi complements the exacting requirements of the regulations by in-house research that far exceeds these rules. In the field of active safety – in other words the detection of hazards and accident prevention – the Audi drivers can draw on a wealth of tools. Whilst the driver information monitor in the cockpit to display race control flag signals is prescribed, Audi has a number of other systems in play.

    Matrix LED headlights combined with Audi laser light optimize the light beam of the race cars that can reach speeds of up to 340 km/h. Since 2015, Audi customers have been able to order laser light in the second generation of the Audi R8 road car as well. Matrix LED technology has been making its way into a growing number of model ranges.

    Particularly good rearward vision is provided by a lightweight and energy-efficient camera system in combination with an ultramodern AMOLED screen that serves as a digital rear view mirror.

    Since the 2001 season, the drivers and pit crews have been keeping their eye on tire inflation pressure using a tire pressure monitoring system. And, last but not least, the Audi R18 automatically controls brake force distribution with respect to the hybrid system in the respective operating condition.

    In the event that an accident cannot be avoided, the passive safety systems take effect. The monocoque consists of a high-strength CFRP structure with an aluminum honeycomb core and has a front crash nose for energy absorption.

    In 2011, Audi was the first manufacturer to use a single-piece monocoque. The cell has been provided with additional side impact protection, as Zylon layers integrated into the cockpit walls prevent the intrusion of objects.

    In rear-end collisions a CFRP structure at the transmission absorbs the impact energy.

    Double wheel tethers have been successfully used since the 2014 season and reduce the risk of wheels separating from the race cars in accidents. Due to their rotary motion, wheels have high levels of kinetic energy.

    The high-voltage protection systems ensure that the electrical currents in the hybrid system can be safely controlled.

    There is no other motorsport discipline that uses an equal amount of high technology to protect the driver before or during an accident.
    Last edited by Rob; 23rd March 2016 at 10:49.
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  2. #212
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    Porsche Reveal New 919 Hybrid and 2016 Livery

    Porsche have this morning released the first official shots of the new 2016 version of the 919 Hybrid in its 2016 FIA WEC livery.

    The factory team tested at Paul Ricard last week and has been on site, but behind closed doors, ever since.


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  3. #213
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    Very exited who had done the better work
    I must admit that when I saw the first pictures of the new Audio I thought that was some kind of future study ... very interesting concept on the chassis ... wow ... I mean looking at it from the front it looks like a "fighter" from star wars
    whereas Porsche looks very traditional LMP1 style
    "If I was driving for Red Bull [from 2008] probably I would have more championships, but because they were dominating between 2010 and 2014 probably I would never have driven for Ferrari. I am very happy and very proud to drive for Ferrari, all my time there.

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    What a difference in the new Porsche and Audi long distance runners..both r awesome, but so different.
    The blue Equity One car looks awesome also.
    Great pix.
    The Porsche looking the more traditional WEC car..the Audi looks like an F1 car with semi enclosed front wheels and a canopy...

  5. #215
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    Two very fast cars! I like the "old F1" nose on the Audi & the front view is killer, just can't get over the canopy being so squared off. The Porsche is more to my personal liking overall, mostly due to the more rounded, fastback look to the roofline.

    Really interesting details on the R18, I was surprised to read they still used flywheel last year, for some reason I thought they had switched already!
    Forza Ferrari !
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  6. #216
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    bit late with ELMS news...

    Successful end to Two Days of Testing at Le Castellet
    ELMS - 23/03/2016

    After the Official Test at the Circuit Paul Ricard, the European Le Mans Series it is on a countdown to the 4 Hours of Silverstone on Saturday 16 April, which is just 24 days away. The final three hour session ended on a wet note as rain fell on the 5.7km circuit for the final 60 minutes of the day.
    The fastest car on Day 2 was the no46 Thiriet by TDS Racing ORECA in both the morning and afternoon sessions. Mathias Beche set a lap of 1m48.569, but this was 0.469 seconds adrift of the best time of the two day test set by Olivier Pla in the no40 Krohn Racing Ligier in first session on Tuesday morning. The Krohn Ligier was third quickest on Day 2, with the no41 Greaves Motorsport Ligier of Memo Rojas second quickest and just 0.027s behind the Thiriet by TDS Racing ORECA.


    In LMP3 the United Autosports Ligiers continued to lead the way. With the no2 car setting the quickest times on Day One and the best of the two day test, it was the no3 Ligier that led the P3 class on Wednesday morning with Matt Bell setting the fastest lap before the time was bettered by the no16 Panis Barthez Competition JS 03 of Simon Gachet with a 1m53.908. The final session of the day was led by the no19 Duquiene Engineering Ligier, with Dino Lunardi setting a 1m55.368.


    In LMGTE it was the no51 AF Corse Ferrari that was quickest once again after setting the fastest time on Day One. Marco Cioci set a 1m 57.252 lap which was 0.052s faster than his best time on Tuesday. The no66 JMW Motorsport Ferrari of Rory Butcher was the quickest in the final session with a 1m57.897.

    Next stop is Silverstone in three weeks time with a two day event on Friday 15 and Saturday 16 April.
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  7. #217
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    What The Drivers Said......
    ELMS - 22/03/2016 - Jeff Carter

    Five drivers give their thoughts during the first day of the 2016 ELMS Official Test
    Aaron Scott, no55 AF Corse Ferrari 458 Italia

    “This year having the same drivers as last year is going to be an advantage. We all know each other and we have the same crew, it is always nice to have the continuity. This is my second year with the GTE car and being with AF Corse is a huge plus.

    “Having a lot of P3 cars will definitely change the racing as you have quite a mix of drivers. It’s good to see that they are a little bit quicker overall than last year but at places like Imola it is going to make the job a bit harder, we will see.

    “I think the three day events could be good as we will have a bit more time but we’ll see when we start the season.”

    Johnny Laursen, no60 Formula Racing Ferrari 458 Italia

    “It feels great to start the season as the champion and also to know we will be going to Le Mans in June, which is our big goal. We are eager to get started. The grid is bigger this year and the problem with the LMP3 is they are not fast enough, the speed difference between them and the GTEs is not big enough and we might have some problems between some of the slower LMP3s and us at the starts, but we will see.”



    Chris Hoy, no25 Algarve Pro Racing Ligier JS P2-Nissan

    “It’s gone really well today actually, I enjoyed it. I feel that I have settled into the team relatively quickly. The Ligier is a different type of car to the Greaves Motorsport Gibson I tested, it handles differently, it’s a lot more twitchy, which you get used to. But I really enjoyed it. I didn’t particularly enjoy this circuit last year, it wasn’t my favourite but I feel I am getting to grips with it better. With regards to the times, myself, Mike [Munemann] and Parth [Ghorpade] were virtually the same times but there is more to come, I’m losing time at Signes and I’m losing time at the double right after that but I’m improving in the slower technical corners. It’s been a good day.”

    Bert Longin, No8 Race Performance Ligier JS P3-Nissan

    “At the moment we are still too slow but we are learning a lot. The LMP3 car is new for me, so I did a 56.8 lap so I need to find at least one second for sure. But that is why we are here. I feel really good in the car and I am very happy to be here. I see so many friends from the GT1 days in the ELMS paddock so it is really very nice, a big family! Apart from Spa, I am looking forward to Imola as I won my first GT1 race there, so I have some good memories there.”

    Memo Rojas, no41 Greaves Motorsport Ligier JS P2-Nissan

    “It’s been very good. Obviously it is the first official test, I am very happy to be here. I’m getting acquainted with the new team, the new car, a new circuit; everything is new with many differences between America and here. The way of racing, the way the team works but it is very professional and interesting to me. I’m really looking forward to racing in the ELMS.”
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    Toyota have become the third and final LMP1 manufacture to show off their 2016 challenger. The brand new Toyota TS050 will be the car that Toyota hope will get them back to the top of LMP1 after a disappointing title defence 2015

    The TS050 will use a turbocharged V6 rather than the V8 of its predecessor (The TS040). Toyota will also step away from their supercapacitor hybrid system and instead take a step in the direction of Porsche’s system, harvesting energy from the breaking as well as from the exhaust. This new system see’s Toyota’s LMP1 effort jump from the 6mj class to the 8mj class within LMP1.

    According to Rob Leupen, Toyota’s vice president, the team have carried over some parts from the TS040. The main area of interest in the new car is saving weight. Leupen added, “we need to leave no stone un turned to be at the same level as our competitors next season.”

    As has been the case with the already released 2016 spec Audi R18 e-tron quattro and Porsche 919 Hybrid, the Toyota TS050 has a brand new livery. The Japanese manufacture have stepped away from their blue theme which has been their LMP1 colours since their LMP1 debut back in 2012 and instead will use a red white and black livery.

    Also changing are the numbers that Toyota will be racing with in 2016. After failing to retain their #1 and #2 numbers from last season due to loosing out in the championship to Porsche, and Audi already claiming the #7 and #8 that Toyota had run up to 2014, Toyota will run all new numbers in 2016. Anthony Davidson, Sebastian Buemi and Kazuki Nakajima will race in the #5 machine. Mike Conway, Stephane Sarrazin and Kamui Kobayashi will drive the second TS050 with the #6 aboard.

    The car will be officially revealed over the weekend at Paul Ricard for the FIA World Endurance Championship’s offical pre-season test session.



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    couple paddock shots from WEC Prologue..




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  10. #220
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    aaaaand...

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  11. #221
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    Quote Originally Posted by abbottcostello View Post
    Two very fast cars! I like the "old F1" nose on the Audi & the front view is killer, just can't get over the canopy being so squared off. The Porsche is more to my personal liking overall, mostly due to the more rounded, fastback look to the roofline.

    Really interesting details on the R18, I was surprised to read they still used flywheel last year, for some reason I thought they had switched already!
    Audi, wow, what a different design route they gone down. Im with you on the cockpit, looks, odd. But im sure there is very good reason for it. Both, Porsche and Toyota, look, smooth lines. Its going be, yet another great year.
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  12. #222
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    The new Toyota looks very similar to the old one, aside from the livery which is a bit of a mess (but not as bad as say the SF16-H). If its competitiveness does not make up for the loss of that glorious naturally aspirated V8, I will be very disappointed.

    The Audi is very striking, almost a formula car with a closed cockpit.

  13. #223
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Architect View Post
    The new Toyota looks very similar to the old one, aside from the livery which is a bit of a mess (but not as bad as say the SF16-H). If its competitiveness does not make up for the loss of that glorious naturally aspirated V8, I will be very disappointed.

    The Audi is very striking, almost a formula car with a closed cockpit.
    All the LMP1 cars, got pretty much same colour schemes. Will try get some good close ups of the Audi. Be good chance i be getting grid passes, so be on grid before the start. But it all depends on few things.
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    TS050 HYBRID: NEW CAR, NEW CHALLENGE FOR TOYOTA GAZOO RACING
    Thursday 24 March 2016

    TOYOTA GAZOO Racing today revealed the all-new TS050 HYBRID, the car which will carry its hopes into a new season of World Endurance Championship (WEC) competition.

    Following a difficult defence of its World Championship titles in 2015, TOYOTA has set itself tough performance targets in order to compete once again at the front of a fiercely-competitive WEC field, featuring fellow LMP1-Hybrid manufacturers Porsche and Audi.

    The TS050 HYBRID, TOYOTA’s third new car since joining WEC in 2012, was unveiled publicly for the first time at the Paul Ricard circuit in southern France this morning.

    It features a significant change in powertrain concept. A 2.4litre, twin-turbo, direct injection V6 petrol engine is combined with an 8MJ hybrid system, both of which are developed by Motor Sport Unit Development Division at Higashi-Fuji Technical Centre.

    A new generation turbo engine with direct injection is better suited to the current regulations which limit fuel flow to the engine, and provides opportunity to continue technology and knowledge transfer from the track to road cars.

    Like TOYOTA road cars, the front and rear motor-generators recover energy under braking, storing it in a high-powered lithium-ion battery and releasing it as boost for maximum efficiency. The change from super capacitor to battery storage allows the TS050 HYBRID to move up to the more-powerful 8MJ hybrid class.

    The TS040 HYBRID was already used as a rolling test bench and contributed to current road cars. With turbo engines increasingly in use on the road, TOYOTA expects to use the technology and know-how from WEC to make ever-better road cars.

    A new powertrain concept brings different cooling and packaging demands, including an updated transmission to handle the significant increase in torque delivered by the turbo engine. Combined with a new aerodynamic concept, that means virtually every part on the TS050 HYBRID chassis has been redesigned by TOYOTA Motorsport GmbH in Cologne, Germany.

    Powertrain components have played their part too in the improved aerodynamic performance of the TS050 HYBRID; by relocating the front motor-generator unit, better under-floor air flow has been achieved which will contribute to overall performance. Suspension kinematics have also been revised to optimise tyre wear.

    The team, which includes several new faces, has already been busy testing the TS050 HYBRID, striving for performance and reliability, covering over 22,000km with positive results. The next test comes at Paul Ricard on 25-26 March, while the nine-race WEC season kicks off at Silverstone on 17 April.

    Toshio Sato, Team President: “This is a very exciting season for TOYOTA GAZOO Racing, particularly because we have a completely new car with a new powertrain concept. This reflects the current trend in road cars and gives us more opportunities to transfer know-how and technology into TOYOTA’s road car developments. Our WEC activities are motivated by the development of technology and people; we are already seeing the results of our activities in current road cars. But as well as helping TOYOTA to make ever-better cars, we also want to win. Our clear target this year is to compete again at the front, after a very disappointing 2015 season. In Higashi-Fuji and Cologne, there has been a huge effort to prepare for this season; everyone is highly motivated and pushing together to get back onto the centre of the podium.”

    Hisatake Murata, General Manager Motor Sport Unit Development Division: “The regulations for this season include a reduction in fuel flow and total fuel energy of approximately 7.5%. As motorsport engineers, we want to always increase the performance of the powertrain so it was important to compensate for this reduction with a more efficient, powerful powertrain. We believe a V6, direct injection, twin turbo engine achieves the best balance of power and efficiency considering the current regulations. Combined with our move into the 8MJ class, this will give us significantly improved torque compared to the previous powertrain; this was a key target for the new car. The new powertrain presents some challenges, particularly in terms of weight and cooling, but the team at Higashi-Fuji and Cologne has worked very hard to address these and I am confident we have met the challenge. We face tough opposition, as last year showed, but we are ready and I cannot wait for Silverstone.”

    Pascal Vasselon, Technical Director: “Aside from some principles which have been retained to capitalise on previous years’ development, we have changed every single part. In many areas, like the powertrain and the aerodynamics, the concepts themselves have changed. The aerodynamic concept, and particularly the front face of the car, has changed drastically. We have spent thousands of hours refining this new concept and this time we have done more than incremental changes; we have significantly changed the way we handle the flow structure after the front downforce-generating devices. There has been a significant progress rate in WEC recently so we cannot afford to have any area of the package which is not fully optimised. The TS050 HYBRID has been developed on that basis. We want to be competitive. That is the minimum target we set ourselves - to be back in the game and competitive.”

    Rob Leupen, Team Director: “The team has worked extremely hard on the TS050 HYBRID, which is the result of a close, productive cooperation. Our innovative motorsport technology, as well as the R&D opportunities in Cologne, is contributing to making ever-better cars and the development of road car engineers. At TMG we are delighted to welcome increasing numbers of colleagues from Japan to learn and utilise motorsport as a test bed for new technologies. We are continuously improving team work and this process is very positive; expertise is transferred between Cologne and Higashi-Fuji, and vice-versa, to help reach our targets in WEC. We have responded to a difficult 2015 by reinforcing our team with additional, younger faces throughout, including the driver line-up. The whole team has worked hard during the tests; we still have a long way to go but we expect to be competitive this year.”

    In the #5 TS050 HYBRID, 2014 World Champions Anthony Davidson and Sébastien Buemi are again joined by former Le Mans pole position winner Kazuki Nakajima to form a potent partnership.

    Multiple Le Mans pole position winner Stéphane Sarrazin once again links up with fellow WEC race winner Mike Conway in the #6. They are joined by Formula 1 podium finisher Kamui Kobayashi, promoted from test and reserve driver.

    While TOYOTA has no official test and reserve driver this year, young Japanese driver Ryo Hirakawa will be a part of the team, as a member of the TOYOTA Young Drivers Programme (TDP). Ryo, who is a race winner in Japanese Super GT and a former Japanese Formula Three champion, will also race an LMP2 car in the European Le Mans Series with the TDS Racing team.

    He will join further tests this season as he acclimatises to the specific demands of an LMP1 car and, like his team-mates, will benefit from the experience of Alex Wurz, who has begun a new chapter in his career as an advisor and team ambassador for TOYOTA.

    Anthony Davidson (#5 TS050 HYBRID): “I’m looking forward to getting started this season with the new TS050 HYBRID; it’s always an exciting time of the year. Last year it was obviously a disappointment but this season we will be stronger and hopefully more like 2014 when we were really competitive. It’s not going to be easy because the competition is strong but we are pushing hard, working on reliability and performance. We are all focused on playing our part and making progress as quickly as possible, as you can see with this completely new car. I’m really impressed with the TS050 HYBRID; I like the different sound of the turbo engine and the 8MJ system is a huge step forward. All the drivers feel that and it makes us realise what we were missing last year. I can’t wait to experience it in race conditions.”

    Sébastien Buemi (#5 TS050 HYBRID): “I’m fully motivated to start the season. We’ve worked very hard and I’m sure that’s going to translate into lap times. The new car is definitely a big step forward. Our chassis has always been quite competitive and we’ve tried to make it even better and we have developed a lot in all areas. Obviously we have put a huge amount of effort into the engine as well as the hybrid system and we can already see the positive results. Thanks to everyone in Higashi-Fuji and Cologne for their hard work; it continues to be a big effort and we are still optimising everything. I cannot predict anything until we get out on track against the others in a competitive environment at Silverstone but my target for this season is clear; I want to be back at the top of the podium.”

    Kazuki Nakajima (#5 TS050 HYBRID): “I have been looking forward to the start of this season and our new car since early last season, so it’s great that it is finally getting started. Last season was tough but it just gave us all added motivation to come back stronger. Introducing this new car, including completely new powertrain shows how serious we are about competing again. The TS050 HYBRID definitely feels like a major improvement, particularly thanks to the new engine and hybrid system. It’s impressive how powerful 8MJ is and the duration of the boost is really cool; this is something really positive for us this season. Our motivation and team spirit is really high. Everyone has been working so hard to be ready for the first race. Now I am ready to win some races this year and to be competitive again; that is the target.”

    Stéphane Sarrazin (#6 TS050 HYBRID): “I’m really excited that the season is coming. We are testing a lot and the whole team is pushing really hard to make sure we have reliability and to fine-tune our car for the season. The Prologue will be the first time where we can see what Audi and Porsche did during the winter, so it will be interesting. Generally, of course I hope that we will be back in the game and that we can show good performance already in Silverstone. My first impressions of the TS050 HYBRID are very positive. It is definitely a big step forward and we improved every single part, particularly the powertrain. The battery itself is really incredible with 8MJ of boost; this is a very good point for us. We are in a busy period to prepare for the season but have a good starting point and we expect to be fighting at the front.”

    Mike Conway (#6 TS050 HYBRID): “I obviously have high expectations for the upcoming season; the target is to get back to winning races. It is nice to have Kamui in the car crew; we’ve tested together already and he is definitely quick so we’re ready to fight. As a team we have made good progress over the winter and the new TS050 HYBRID is cool. We have taken a big step by moving into the 8MJ class and the new battery is impressive. The whole team has made a massive effort to change every aspect of the car, which is not a simple task, and we are all hugely motivated to get back to the front. At the moment it’s hard to tell where we are compared to the other manufacturers but we definitely made a big step forward.”

    Kamui Kobayashi (#6 TS050 HYBRID): “I like the new car; it is definitely a big improvement which gives me a lot of hope for the season. I particularly like the new powertrain with turbo engine and 8MJ hybrid system; it’s great to drive this car! Of course, it is always challenging with such a new package and we have to work hard to maximise performance and reliability. This season is a new experience for me. I have raced in WEC before but that was only in the GT class; LMP1 cars are a totally different story and there are new things to learn. I’m happy to be part of the #6 car with Stéphane and Mike, who are really good drivers with a lot of experience. My target this season is to show strong performance and of course to win races. I can’t wait to get started in Silverstone.”


    2016 World Endurance Championship Calendar

    17 April 6 Hours of Silverstone (Gbr)
    7 May 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps (Bel)
    18 June 24 Hours of Le Mans (Fra)
    24 July 6 Hours of Nürburgring (Deu)
    3 September 6 Hours of Mexico (Mex)
    17 September 6 Hours of Circuit of the Americas (USA)
    16 October 6 Hours of Fuji (Jpn)
    6 November 6 Hours of Shanghai (Chn)
    19 November 6 Hours of Bahrain (Bhr)

    TS050 HYBRID Technical Specifications

    Type LMP1-H (Le Mans Prototype - Hybrid)
    Bodywork Carbon fibre composite
    Windscreen Polycarbonate
    Gearbox Transversal with 7 gears sequential
    Gearbox casing Aluminium
    Driveshafts Constant velocity tripod plunge-joint driveshafts
    Clutch ZF-supplied multidisc
    Differential Mechanical locking differential
    Suspension Independent front and rear double wishbone, pushrod-system
    Springs Torsion bars
    Anti roll bars Front and rear
    Steering Hydraulically assisted
    Brake calipers Akebono mono-block light-alloy
    Brake discs Carbon ventilated
    Rims RAYS magnesium alloy, 13 x 18 inch
    Tyres Michelin radial
    Front tyres 31/71-18
    Rear tyres 31/71-18
    Length 4650mm
    Width 1900mm
    Height 1050mm
    Fuel capacity 62.5litres
    Powertrain TOYOTA HYBRID System - Racing (THS-R)
    Engine V6 direct injection twin-turbo
    Engine capacity 2.4litre
    Fuel Petrol
    Valves 4
    Engine power 368kw / 500PS
    Hybrid power 368kw / 500PS (front and rear combined)
    Combined power 736kw / 1000PS
    Battery High-powered lithium-ion battery developed by TOYOTA 
    Front hybrid motor AISIN AW
    Rear hybrid motor DENSO
    Inverter DENSO
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    FIA WEC: Paul Ricard Prologue, GTE Paddock Notes

    Proton Competition appear to only have three drivers here across their trio of Porsches (including the KCMG car), Khaled Al Qubaisi, Christian Ried and Joel Camathias.

    Ford Chip Ganassi Racing are, in common with several other teams, simply working their way through a lengthy programme of testing here:

    “This is only the second time we have had the full team together (after a test at Motorland Aragon) and the first time we have run the cars with all the required WEC kit (including the Magneti Marelli in-car marshal system) so there’s a lot of bedding in to do said Team Principal George Howard-Chappell.

    “Job one is to cycle the drivers through the cars and pick off any niggles that come along. There have been the inevitable minor gremlins but no major issues this morning.”

    James Calado on the new Ferrari 488 GTE: “It’s a really lovely car to drive, the 458 was a wonderful car but we had really maxed out on what could be done in terms of development. One immediate difference is that it is much, much quieter, and that will be a welcome thing at Le Mans.

    The Gulf Racing UK Porsche looks stunning out on track here, a few minor livery tweaks only adding to the visual appeal of a car that already really suits the iconic Gulf colours.

    Mike Wainwright meanwhile is looking forward to the season ahead as the team steps up to the WEC for 2016.

    “There are a number of reasons why it makes sense for us to be here, the shift over to three day weekends for ELMS gives us, and others a real issue, I should be at all of the races with Adam and Ben, there’s only one that presents a potential issue and we’ll know way before time if that is the case.

    “Of course we want to be at Le Mans too and, after missing out via the ELMS last year this was the only way to guarantee that. And, it’s a World Championship and that’s cool too.

    “I’m very happy with the Porsche, the car is just great, very predictable, very stable and very fast.
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    FIA WEC: Paul Ricard Prologue, Morning Session Day 1, Porsche Two Seconds Clear

    The best time of the 2016 WEC Prologue’s first session came from the Porsche camp, with Neel Jani in the #2 Porsche setting a 1:38.284 halfway the four-hour session.

    The Swiss driver’s time was good enough to stand for the remainder of morning; the entire session was led by the #2 Porsche crew. The #1 car is as announced, here at Ricard, but will only run tomorrow.

    2.253 second behind Jani’s 919 was the brand new #5 Toyota Racing TS050, which set a 1:40.517 with Sebastien Buemi at the wheel during the final hour. The #7 Audi was just under a further tenth back, coming in third fastest of the three factory prototypes present at Ricard.

    Both Porsche and Audi managed to clock over 70 laps each. Toyota meanwhile, only managed 50 tours of Le Castellet.

    Notably, with Davidson at the wheel the new TS050 was consistently running quickest of all the runners through sector two towards the end of the session, while coming in slower than some P2 cars through sector three.

    The #13 Rebellion Racing R-One of Dominik Kraihamer, Mathéo Tuscher and Alexandre Imperatori headed the P1 privateer runners with a time of 1:42.329.

    In the LMP2 ranks it was an Alpine 1-2, with the BAXI DC Racing A460 heading the pair. The best time of the class was a 1:37.340 set by Nelson Panciatici early in the session. Third in the class was the Strakka Racing Gibson, which managed 75 banker laps and a time of 1:47.921.

    GTE Pro was headed by Ford early in the session, as the #66 completed some longer runs. Eventually the class would be headlined by both new AF Corse 488s though. Gianmaria Bruni set the best GTE time of the session, a 1:57.808. His time was four tenths quicker than the sister #71 Ferrai and three tenths faster than the third placed #66 Ford.

    The Am class saw the #50 Larbre Competition Corvette finish the morning almost a second clear of the rest of the field after a 1:58.268. It wasn’t a completely clean run for the French team though, as Yutaka Yamagishi brought out the only red flag period of the session after an off. The car was undamaged however.

    DSC’s Mat Fernandez went down to Larbre’s garage and spoke to Pierre Ragues about the season ahead:

    “We stroke a deal very late with Larbre Competition,” Ragues told DSC. “I barely covered 35 laps with the car before this Prologue. My objective now is to get acquainted with a GT car again.

    “The last time I drove such a car was in 2003, in the early days of my career – it has been a long while. But things are coming together: I am starting to understand how the Corvette works in the curves and at breaking points. I am heavily relying on Paolo (Ruberti) ‘s set up for now.

    “Good news is, the car is well balanced at Ricard. My lap times are improving and I am getting closer to his”

    The Gulf Racing UK Porsche set a 1:59.188 to go second. And the top three of the Am runners was rounded out by the #83 AF Corse Ferrari, another team DSC spoke to during the session:

    “The car is new to totally new to us,” said Emmanuel Collard. “It is last year’s F458 from the GTE Pro category. This aero package is slightly different from the one we were used to having in 2015. Our drivers have not changed since last season. It’s great, in particular for Francois (Perrodo). He can fully be totally focussed on his driving. He has again improved a lot over the winter. He will surprise all of us this season – keep an eye on him.”
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  23. #233
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    Porsche that is impressive.

    Not bad start for our boys either.
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    PROLOGUE 2016: SESSION REPORTS FROM DAY ONE

    25/03/2016 - 17h50

    Porsche, Signatech, AF Corse and Larbre ahead in morning session

    The anticipation and waiting is over. The FIA WEC cars and drivers blew the dust off the long winter and made sure it was a very Good Friday indeed at Circuit Paul Ricard today.

    Fine spring conditions in the South of France welcomed the 29 cars as they took to the track and welcomed in the fifth edition of the WEC, as preparations continued for the first round at Silverstone in three weeks’ time.

    The opening day was broken down in to three sessions – morning, afternoon and night, with a total of ten hours track running.

    The morning session saw reigning champions Porsche Team head the times with Neel Jani stopping the clocks at 1.38.264s in the heavily revised 2016-spec Porsche 919 Hybrid. The new Toyota TS050 HYBRID placed second with Sebastien Buemi setting the time of 1m40.517s, while the Audi R18 completed the most laps of the three LMP1 frontrunners (75 laps in total) to place third, as Benoit Tréluyer set a 1m40.612s best lap.

    The Rebellion Racing squad completed 131 laps with its pair of LMP1 Privateer Rebellion R-One AER cars to place 1-2 in the class ahead of the ByKolles CLM P1/01-AER, which was driven by new recruit Oliver Webb.



    In LMP2, Alpine had a fine start to the 2016 season as they placed 1-2 in the first session of the day. Nelson Panciatici just dipped below last year’s fastest Prologue test time by setting a 1m47.340s lap early in the session with the Signatech-run Baxi DC Racing Alpine A460-Nissan. Panciatici’s time eclipsed stablemate Gustavo Menezes’ best run of 1m45.544s.

    In the LMGTE classes it was Ferrari and Chevrolet that led the way. Gianmaria Bruni set a fastest tour of 1m57.808s in the striking new Ferrari 488 GTE, despite completing far fewer laps (18) than the opposition.

    LMGTE Am was dominated by the Larbre Competition Chevrolet Corvette C7-Z06 during the four hours. Paolo Ruberti peaked on a 1m58268s in the rumbling American muscle GTE car which, despite a quick spin by Yutaka Yamagishi, enjoyed a strong initial showing.


    Porsche top again in afternoon running

    With the clouds getting darker after the lunch break and spots of rain beginning to fall, the track conditions were not as favourable for some of the four hours of afternoon running.

    But, with a small window of dry running in the early afternoon, Romain Dumas scorched to a 1m37.960s lap in the No.2 Porsche 919 Hybrid to put down a clear benchmark. Set on only his second tour of the session, the lap was just shy of last year's best time of 1m37.220s, which indicates that the teams have found a variety of improvements over the winter to negate the 8% cut in fuel allowance this season.

    Audi was again frugal with its laps this afternoon. Only 28 were completed over the four hours, and just like this morning Benoit Tréluyer set the best lap of 1m39.393s in the new Audi R18.

    Toyota Gazoo Racing seemed to be keeping plenty in their back pockets at Paul Ricard as they concentrated on developing the spectacular TS050 HYBRID. Anthony Davidson set the third fastest time, just a tenth of a second away from the Audi R18.

    The LMP1 battle is set to be fierce in 2016, and although Audi and Toyota were over a second in arrears after the afternoon running, there is a feeling in the paddock that both have the package to offer the reigning champions a mighty challenge this year. More private testing will be undertaken before Silverstone in three weeks’ time.

    Rebellion Racing again headed the ByKolles team in the LMP1 Privateer class with Nicolas Prost getting seat time in the No.12 car and heading the No.13 Anglo/Swiss car driven by Dominik Kraihamer.

    The ferociously competitive LMP2 class saw five different constructors in the top five positions, and separated by just over a second. The session ended Gibson, Ligier, Alpine, ORECA and BR01, underlining the diversity in the popular class which always delivers excellent close racing.

    An excellent time set by Jonny Kane in the Strakka Racing Gibson 015S-Nissan resulted in the British team being top of the timing screens. The Northern Irish racer set a time of 1m46.976s to get a clear 0.6s gap on his rivals. The chasing pack was led by the Mexican-entered RGR Sports by Morand squad, as Bruno Senna continued to acquit himself well in the LMP2 class to place second.

    Ferrari again ran out top in the LMGTE Pro category with the new No.71 Ferrari 488 GTE car ahead of the No.67 Ford GT by just two tenths of a second. Davide Rigon’s 1m58.479s lap outpaced Andy Priaulx’s 1m58.697s, and the closeness of the battling manufacturers added more spice to the already highly anticipated Ford versus Ferrari battle.

    Larbre Competition consolidated its position at the top of the LMGTE Am times with GT returnee Pierre Ragues posting a quick time with a best of 1m58.957s. This was just under two tenths of a second faster than Emmanuel Collard’s second best time of 1m59.113s in the No.83 AF Corse Ferrari 458 Italia.

    The evening session will begin at 19.00 local time..
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    This Rebellion livery im really liking.
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    Last edited by Rob; 16th April 2016 at 20:26.
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