Audi R8 Grand-Am to debut at Daytona 24 Hours’ 50th staging

Article by Anita Panait, on January 25, 2012

The Audi R8 GRAND-AM will debut on the 50th season of the Daytona 24 Hours, scheduled on January 26-29. Two customer teams, the APR Motorsport and Oryx Racing, have chosen the Audi R8 GRAND-AM as their entries for the GT class of the endurance classic. The event, which has been running since 1962, is considered one of the finest in international motorsport. 

The “Rolex 24 at Daytona” has featured on its podium some of the greatest racers in history, including Jacky Ickx, Hans Herrmann, Hurley Haywood, A. J. Foyt, and Derek Bell. The founder of the Audi Sport Team Joest, Reinhold Joest, also won a classic race in Florida. Mike Rockenfeller, Audi’s current factory driver, has also won a classic but it was with an American team.

The 50th running of the classics is expected to be a bash, with organizers planning numerous events during the race. Audience will be treated to a champions party with numerous racing legends, an exhibition of historic overall-winning cars, autograph sessions and pit walks. Audience could also go to the carnival complete with a Ferris Wheel, or join a 5-kilometre run on the race track.

 "We are proud to be part of the action for the first time at the event’s special anniversary," said Werner Frowein, Managing Director of quattro GmbH, which has developed the Audi R8 GRAND-AM. Frowein said they are currently in negotiations with other buyers who wish to field the R8 GRAND-AM in the classics. After Daytona, the R8 GRAND-AM will also be seen at the other 12 rounds of the GRAND-AM series, said Frowein, adding that Audi of America will directly support customers in the future.

"Entering the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series is the biggest challenge APR Motorsport has taken on so far," emphasises Stephen Hooks, President of APR. "Our team prepared for this step at previous runs in the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge. APR is known around the world as one of the leading tuners of Audi, Volkswagen, Seat and Škoda vehicles. We’re looking forward to the Audi R8 GRAND-AM with huge anticipation, our customers and fans are really excited and since the ‘Roar before the 24’ test we’ve just been dying for the 24-hour race to start."

The Audi R8 is the athletic model in the carmaker's lineup. The Audi R8 is now made even more dynamic featuring new features on the outside, the brakes and the cabin, as well as the S tronic transmission. The back of the car now features dynamic turn signals for the first time. The new Audi R8 V10 plus gives you 550 hp of power, allowing it to accelerate to 100 kilometers per hour from standstill in 3.5 seconds. This is partly due to the very light construction, which gives the car a curb weight of only 1,570 kilograms.

The new lineup has two body styles: Spyder and Coupé. It also makes use of three engines. Using the seven-speed S tronic, sprint times have been increased by 0.3 seconds and fuel savings have similarly been increased by up to 0.9 liters per 100 km, while carbon dioxide emissions are rated at 22 grams per kilometer.

Further, the Audi R8 V8 engine gives you 430 hp of power and 430 Nm of torque anywhere from 4,500 to 6,000 revolutions per minute. With the seven-speed S tronic, the Audi R8 Coupé goes from standstill to 100 km/kilometers per hour in just 4.3 seconds and can reach maximum speeds of 300 kilometers per hour. Meanwhile, the Audi R8 V10 accelerates in only 3.6 seconds and gives you maximum speeds of 314 kilometers per hour. This engine gives you 525 hp of power and torques of 530 Nm at speeds of 6,500 revolutions per minute.

Also, the new Audi R8 V10 plus gives you power of 550 hp, torque of 540 Nm, and sprints to 100 kilometers per hour from 0 in just 3.5 seconds. It also registers a top speed of up to 317 kilometers per hour. Note, however, that this top of the line model is available exclusively as a Coupé.

You can also choose the six-speed manual transmission or you can opt for the seven-speed S tronic. The S tronic that takes the place of the R tronic and is what you find on all V10 models. The dual clutch transmission also has a launch control feature that gives you optimal traction at the start. Lastly, the quattro permanent all-wheel drive system delivers all the power.

Topics: audi, audi r8, race car

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