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    Audi done with LMP1

    http://www.autocar.co.uk/car-news/motorsport/audi-set-lmp1-and-le-mans-withdrawal-updated

     

    I guess I called this one when diesel gate happened. Actually when Porsche rejoined Le Mans in 2014.

    Cost cutting needed to be done and it's pointless and expensive to run 2 LMP1 teams, one of them has to go. Le Mans has always been Porsche's playground, they have the history and records, so it's just natural to pull Audi.

    Despite the 'records' that Audi was establishing the last almost 2 decades of Le Mans racing, they are still the new comer, sports car racing is really not their thing, rally racing is.

    When Audi entered Le Mans, it was for Piech's ego, to have his baby win it all. It did. Many times over. But now that Piech is not in power, his baby is getting chopped up. 

    But the silver lining for this news is that perhaps the R8 will be gone soon, and be replaced by the 960.


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    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Whoopsy:

    http://www.autocar.co.uk/car-news/motorsport/audi-set-lmp1-and-le-mans-withdrawal-updated

     

    I guess I called this one when diesel gate happened. Actually when Porsche rejoined Le Mans in 2014.

    Cost cutting needed to be done and it's pointless and expensive to run 2 LMP1 teams, one of them has to go. Le Mans has always been Porsche's playground, they have the history and records, so it's just natural to pull Audi.

    Despite the 'records' that Audi was establishing the last almost 2 decades of Le Mans racing, they are still the new comer, sports car racing is really not their thing, rally racing is.

    When Audi entered Le Mans, it was for Piech's ego, to have his baby win it all. It did. Many times over. But now that Piech is not in power, his baby is getting chopped up. 

    But the silver lining for this news is that perhaps the R8 will be gone soon, and be replaced by the 960.

    The 960 is coming but seeing the R8 go will be painful because no matter how good the 960 will be, it will never sound as good as that V10 equipped Audi (or Lamborghini). It makes sense though...the R8 is not a car which "belongs" to Audi and it only made sense when Porsche was not a part of the VW Group.


    --

    RC (Germany) - Rennteam Editor Porsche 991 Carrera 4 GTS Cabriolet, Porsche Macan Turbo, Audi R8 V10 Plus (2017), Mini JCW (2015), Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT (2014)


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Doubt R8 disappears. It sells well and it costs very little to design and engineer given the sharing of the platform.

    Plenty of room for Audi, Porsche, and Lamborghini in the $175-300K range. Different designs and luxury for different tastes, and a slightly different tune for different performance.


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    noone1:

    Doubt R8 disappears. It sells well and it costs very little to design and engineer given the sharing of the platform.

    Plenty of room for Audi, Porsche, and Lamborghini in the $175-300K range. Different designs and luxury for different tastes, and a slightly different tune for different performance.

    Right now, Audi is very very "confused" of what to do with the R8 and R8 marketing, at least over here in Germany. I do not have the feeling that they are taking the R8 marketing too seriously to be frank. So this could be an indication of what could happen or what Audi expects to happen. Audi marketing wanted to market the R8 as some sort of track car so far but this didn't work well for them (also because they didn't try too hard). Now it seems they want to take a different approach but it is still unclear what kind of approach exactly. 

    Once a 960 shows up, a R8 doesn't make much sense in my opinion but you are right, if the price is lower and the R8 has a different approach in design and tech, the R8 could still find customers. I still believe however that a 960 and the Huracan make more sense than the R8. The next gen 911 will share the same (base) platform, so no big deal for VW Group to put a R8 on the market as well.

    For me, abandoning the R8 would be a godsend gift because I would certainly keep my car...the last R8 and the last V10, what do I want more?! Smiley


    --

    RC (Germany) - Rennteam Editor Porsche 991 Carrera 4 GTS Cabriolet, Porsche Macan Turbo, Audi R8 V10 Plus (2017), Mini JCW (2015), Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT (2014)


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    The R8 was a tied in to the Audi LMP program. Now that the LMP program will be gone, it will be an orphan. 

    Yes, it does race in other sports car racing series, but it's primary link was the LMP cars.

    Each brand has a certain built-in image for consumers, no matter what the brand try to change it to, the old image will still sticks.

    Within the VAG group:

    VW means cheap. Doesn't matter what VAG do to the brand, but to North Americans at least, VW means cheap, that's why the Phaeton failed miserably.

    Porsche means sports cars. It doesn't matter now they sell more SUVs than sports cars, people still associate sports car with the Porsche brand.

    Lamborghini means outrageous cars, the rebel to the more gentleman-like Ferrari. It still runs true.

    For Audi, the Quattro brand name is more famous than Audi itself. When people think of Audi Quattro, they immediately think of rally cars. That's Audi's bread and butter. Not sports cars, not sedans, but rally cars. No matter how many Le Mans Audi wins, people always will think of rally cars first when mentioning Audi Quattro.

    Bentley, the sportier version of Rolls Royce. The old RR/Bentley marriage was too deeply rooted in people's mind to have them separated even when they are now owned by different companies. It doesn't matter how sporty Bentley can make their cars, people will still think of them as a big heavy luxurious living room on wheels, with Bentley being the sportier living room. 


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    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Whoopsy:

    The R8 was a tied in to the Audi LMP program. Now that the LMP program will be gone, it will be an orphan. 

    Yes, it does race in other sports car racing series, but it's primary link was the LMP cars.

    Each brand has a certain built-in image for consumers, no matter what the brand try to change it to, the old image will still sticks.

    Within the VAG group:

    VW means cheap. Doesn't matter what VAG do to the brand, but to North Americans at least, VW means cheap, that's why the Phaeton failed miserably.

    Porsche means sports cars. It doesn't matter now they sell more SUVs than sports cars, people still associate sports car with the Porsche brand.

    Lamborghini means outrageous cars, the rebel to the more gentleman-like Ferrari. It still runs true.

    For Audi, the Quattro brand name is more famous than Audi itself. When people think of Audi Quattro, they immediately think of rally cars. That's Audi's bread and butter. Not sports cars, not sedans, but rally cars. No matter how many Le Mans Audi wins, people always will think of rally cars first when mentioning Audi Quattro.

    Bentley, the sportier version of Rolls Royce. The old RR/Bentley marriage was too deeply rooted in people's mind to have them separated even when they are now owned by different companies. It doesn't matter how sporty Bentley can make their cars, people will still think of them as a big heavy luxurious living room on wheels, with Bentley being the sportier living room. 

    I think you have summed things up well. Interesting how difficult it is to change people's brand perceptions even with outstanding products  - R8, and ^75 LT being great examples. The LT coupe is down to £40K above list yet 458 Speciales are still at £80K or more above list  - go figure Smiley


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    R8 is here to stay, I guarantee it. New high-end cars are being added constantly to all brands. Overlap isn't a problem and Audi/VW aren't short on cash. The only reason they dropped out of LMP1 is because it's literally pointless for Audi to compete against Porsche. It's literally a waste of money. The fines for VW will be spread out over like 10-20 years, and their cash flow is enormous.

    Audi's rally image is gone. They're just an upper-middle class car company now. US and China are the biggest global markets and I assure you that no one even talks about quattro or rally cars.


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Audi leaving? I'll believe it when I see it.


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Their only focus might be on Formula E from now on? http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/125975


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Spyderidol:

    Audi leaving? I'll believe it when I see it.

    My feelings exactly.  How long has this rumor been circulating?


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    DuckieRS:

    Their only focus might be on Formula E from now on? http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/125975

    Everyone is getting in on forumla E nowadays. If you think about it, it makes more sense than LMP now, to some extent.

    Everything is going electric, so better off spending money to race in a series that's all electric. At the end of the day, it doesn't matter if it's LMP, Formula 1, Formula E, or carnival bumper cars. So long as there are big names competing, the benefits will be the same and they can still learn a ton from the technology they employ.

    Having F1 and LMP be such a popular series is unfortunate for the automakers. They'd be better off with a popular and much cheaper series. Eyeballs are eyeballs at the end of the day.


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Adam R:
    Spyderidol:

    Audi leaving? I'll believe it when I see it.

    My feelings exactly.  How long has this rumor been circulating?

    2003 I believe was the first time it was floated.


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Audi out! This time the rumors were true.


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Spyderidol:

    Audi out! This time the rumors were true.

    With Audi out, is there any reason to keep LMP1 alive, or will we see LMP2 take over and teams go for LMP3 and GT cars ??


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    LMP1 will live on. New manufacturers will come in (Look for Peugeot)


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Spyderidol:

    LMP1 will live on. New manufacturers will come in (Look for Peugeot)

    I hope you are right, but I could get worried the way ACO has been out marking the territory with regards to LMP3 lately in the case against Creventic. 


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    tso:
    Spyderidol:

    LMP1 will live on. New manufacturers will come in (Look for Peugeot)

    I hope you are right.

    Me too.Smiley


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    GerardNeveuWEC ‏@GerardNeveuWEC  3h3 hours ago

    One manufacturers is leaving, other will be arriving and 32 cars on the grid with LMp1 / Lmp2 ang GTE. This is the life of a championship.


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Very nice article from Pruett. And...1 billion dollars anually for Audi and Porsche in LMP1!!!

    http://www.roadandtrack.com/motorsports/a31331/audis-exit-from/


    --

    sportcars-history.com


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    It never made sense for Audi to ran Le Mans anyway. Back then Audi entered to race simply for Piech's ego. HIS Audi almost broke Porsche's record at Le Mans. 

    Audi's famous for rally racing, and to an extend sedan circuit racing. Endurance racing was never their forte. But Piech dumped enough money over the years to make Audi where it is now.

     


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    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Exactly right, Audi should continue rallying and doing the Quattro thing. They should have also done all SUVs and leave Porsche making the sports cars with of course Le Mans presence and ideally dominance like Audi had.


    --

    1986 BMW 325i Cabrio Alpine Weiss/Black Leather - German Spec 
    2006 Mercedes-Benz CLS 500 Black/Black Leather 

    Ex: ''91 BMW 535i, '91 BMW 318i, '89 BMW 525i, '74 Mercedes-Benz 280E, '87 BMW 325is, '86 BMW 325e, '05 Ford Focus ZX4 S, '85.5 Porsche 944

     


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Im going to post what i did on fchat, so i can see what this side thinks, even though we know it won't happen: 

     What they need to do is bring back the old "GT1" Modus-Operandi. Have car companies compete with cars that they have to sell to customers. This way, they can keep advancing tech, keep entertaining the fans and customers, and have a top-notch series with extreme and cutting tech. Take the AM-RB 001 vs the Mercedes R50 vs whatever, and there is your new top series. "New-Gen GT1". Or "GT1 Gentem".

     


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Just a few observations:

    1. There is nothing strategic about Audi's withdrawal from LMP1. It is a cost-cutting measure fairly and squarely, spurred by Dieselgate, heavy capex needs to rejuvate the model line-up and investment in new EV models.

    2. Their future focus on Formula E as an integral part of their EV road vehicle strategy is a joke, because all E- performance components in Formula E are standard-issue parts with no cutting-edge development taking place as in LMP1.

    3. They remain committed to the domestic German DTM racing series with their A5 model, based on outdated V8 dinosours even without DFI technology. No word on their future in WRC rallying, though...

    4. The future of LMP1 is in disarray, it is like the endurance version of Formula 1 in terms of speed and high-tech, but now with only 2 competitors left and an expensive rule change in the pipeline for 2018 with the upgrade to the 10 MJ hybrid class...plus the poor marketing of WEC apart from LeMans hardly justifies the effort from a manufacturer's vantage point. Understandably, Peugeot is still sitting on the fence.

    5. The real future of WEC could well be in GTE, with lots of cars and manufacturers competing there, plus BMW joining in 2018. 

     


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Olli, I would expect that aco is working actively now with porsche, toyota and peugeot to introduce the lmp1l class for customers+manufacturers where hybrid is not required, so much lower budget is required to be competitive. Also aco works on hydrogen solution in regulations (hi to bmw). So, nothing really bad there. Lets wait and see.


    --

    sportcars-history.com


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    olli:

    Just a few observations:

    1. There is nothing strategic about Audi's withdrawal from LMP1. It is a cost-cutting measure fairly and squarely, spurred by Dieselgate, heavy capex needs to rejuvate the model line-up and investment in new EV models.

    2. Their future focus on Formula E as an integral part of their EV road vehicle strategy is a joke, because all E- performance components in Formula E are standard-issue parts with no cutting-edge development taking place as in LMP1.

    3. They remain committed to the domestic German DTM racing series with their A5 model, based on outdated V8 dinosours even without DFI technology. No word on their future in WRC rallying, though...

    4. The future of LMP1 is in disarray, it is like the endurance version of Formula 1 in terms of speed and high-tech, but now with only 2 competitors left and an expensive rule change in the pipeline for 2018 with the upgrade to the 10 MJ hybrid class...plus the poor marketing of WEC apart from LeMans hardly justifies the effort from a manufacturer's vantage point. Understandably, Peugeot is still sitting on the fence.

    5. The real future of WEC could well be in GTE, with lots of cars and manufacturers competing there, plus BMW joining in 2018. 

     

    Sadly I agree with you. Only addition would be a potential boost to LMP2/3, which I am afraid could ruin LMP2 should works teams enter.


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    The FIA-ACO will definitely have to find a way to cap budgets in LMP1 to entice new entrants such as Peugeot.

    Such a cap should not set at an arbitrary, artifical and hard-to-police level, but the rules themselves should be tweaked such that, with approx. 50 % of today's $ 200 million required investment, as manufacturer would have a shot at winning.

    Do away with the dying private LMP1 sub-class and fold it into LMP2 instead. Keep big industrial manufacturers out of LMP2, invite small racing manufacturers such as ByKolles to join.

    Upgrade BoP for GTE PRO to something like the EoT in LMP1 or model the rules on US IMSA approach to "science based BoP".

     

      


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Capping costs , in my opinion, will not work over the medium term.

    Not only are they hard to police, but manufacturers will always spend what their budgets allow them to spend. If you cap aero, they will spend it on engine development. If you cap both , they will spend it on hybrid. If you cap all three they will spend it on chassis. If you cap all four they will spend it on marketing....and so on and on. It is a fools errand, and only serves to dumb-down the series and manufacturers like Porsche will loose interest. They are interested in a dynamic series that allows technical development, not some dumbed-down almost spec-series.

    As for GTE. I agree that BoP (as we know it) needs to go.


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Totally agree. LMP you can't cap budget because they will always get around it. You have to make it worthwhile for companies to get into either through R&D wins or through being able to sell to privateers. How many 956/962s are out there because of this???

    GTE should go back to capped by displacement/turbo intake and weight. The best racing has always come when that is all that constrains them. LMP cars are fast enough not to have to massivley reduce the speed of GTE cars. Futch shoudln't have to drive a Ferrari race car that has a 6,000 RPM redline!

    Four classes LMP1 with Hybrid, LMP2 - same car without Hybrid, GTE1 - Homologized street based cars over 4.0 liters (and with a turbo multiple) and GTE2 - Higher number of Homologized street cars needed and under 4.0 liters. 


    --

    Past-President, Porsche Club of America - Upper Canada Region


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Spyderidol,

    You may have misunderstood me, because I agree with all of your points. What I was trying to say was that they should attempt to define LMP1 rules which naturally result in lower cost budgets.

    Toyota, the world's largest car manufacturer, has been much more frugal than either Porsche or Audi, and if you lower the "natural" cost bar a bit more, you may find that a few more manufacturers may wish to join the fray.

    Anyway, having 2 Toyota battle it out with 2 Porsche for $ 200 million a season for each team seems kind of ridiculous and unsustainable.


    Re: Audi done with LMP1

    Mithras:

    Totally agree. LMP you can't cap budget because they will always get around it. You have to make it worthwhile for companies to get into either through R&D wins or through being able to sell to privateers. How many 956/962s are out there because of this???

    GTE should go back to capped by displacement/turbo intake and weight. The best racing has always come when that is all that constrains them. LMP cars are fast enough not to have to massivley reduce the speed of GTE cars. Futch shoudln't have to drive a Ferrari race car that has a 6,000 RPM redline!

    Four classes LMP1 with Hybrid, LMP2 - same car without Hybrid, GTE1 - Homologized street based cars over 4.0 liters (and with a turbo multiple) and GTE2 - Higher number of Homologized street cars needed and under 4.0 liters. 

    I absolutely agree with you. Unfortunately we are in a minority and the go-to knee jerk reaction by the regulators will be to try and cap costs.

    Incidentally - part of the responsibility for the cost explosion has to be borne by the regulators and their rather fetish rule making.

    The regulators created a very technical and dynamic series , that also happens to be expensive. Now everyone wants to build a Rolls Royce , but at VW prices. It's simply not going to happen.

    As usual, they will land up killing the goose that laid the golden eggs.


     
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