An historical 80th edition of the 24 hours race of Le Mans this weekend. For the first time in history, a hybrid vehicle claimed pole position on the 13.629 km long La Sarthe circuit near Le Mans. The German Audi R18 e-tron quattro with the 2011 winners Fassler, Lotterer and Treluyer set the best time early in the final qualifying session. Audi’s non hybrid ranked second in front of the first Toyota hybrid.

The differences between the Audi diesels (R18 Ultra), Audi hybrid diesels (R18 e-tron quattro) and Toyota TS030 hybrid petrols are small. It will be interesting to see how the cars will hold over a long distance. The Ultra has an advantage due to its optimised weight distribution but that the extra power and traction of the e-tron should make it ultimately faster as long as the drivers can make the e-tron’s 58 litre fuel capacity last for the same number of laps as the Ultra’s 60 litres.

“I think we will do the same number hopefully because the two litres less make it harder. It is difficult to be the same but we can manage it. We can use the hybrid system not in terms of performance but in terms of saving fuel. It will save a bit but it is not a big amount,” said Treluyer to Autosport.

2012 Le Mans 24 hours qualifying result:

Pos Cl Drivers Team/Car Time

1.  P1     Fassler/Lotterer/Treluyer           Audi e-tron                  3m23.787s

2.  P1     Dumas/Duval/Gene                    Audi Ultra                   3m24.078s

3.  P1     Davidson/Buemi/Sarrazin             Toyota                       3m24.842s

4.  P1     Capello/Kristensen/McNish           Audi e-tron                  3m25.433s

5.  P1     Wurz/Lapierre/Nakajima              Toyota                       3m25.488s

6.  P1     Bonanomi/Jarvis/Rockenfeller        Audi Ultra                   3m26.420s

7.  P1     Leventis/Watts/Kane                 Strakka HPD                  3m29.622s

8.  P1     Prost/Jani/Heidfeld                 Rebellion Lola-Toyota        3m29.837s

9.  P1     Belicchi/Primat/Bleekemolen         Rebellion Lola-Toyota        3m31.866s

10.  P1     Ara/Minassian/Bourdais              Pescarolo Dome-Judd          3m33.066s

11.  P1     Brabham/Chandhok/Dumbreck           JRM HPD                      3m35.421s

12.  P1     Montagny/Baguette/Kraihamer         OAK Pescarolo-Judd           3m35.584s

13.  P1     Collard/Boullion/Hall               Pescarolo-Judd               3m37.485s

14.  P2     Martin/Charouz/Graves               ADR ORECA-Nissan             3m38.181s

15.  P2     Nicolet/Lahaye/Pla                  OAK Morgan-Judd              3m38.598s

16.  P2     Panciatici/Ragues/Rusinov           Signatech ORECA-Nissan       3m39.152s

17.  P2     Beche/Thiriet/Tinseau               TDS ORECA-Nissan             3m39.252s

18.  P2     Perez-Companc/Ayari/Kaffer          Pecom ORECA-Nissan           3m39.711s

19.  P2     Firth/Hughes/Hartley                Murphy ORECA-Nissan          3m39.877s

20.  P2     Heinemeier Hansson/Leinders/Martin  OAK Morgan-Nissan            3m39.899s

21.  P2     Sims/Buurman/Iannetta               Status Lola-Judd             3m40.280s

22.  P2     Potolicchio/Dalziel/Kimber-Smith    Starworks HPD-Honda          3m40.471s

23.  P2     Briere/Petersen/Nakano              Boutsen ORECA-Nissan         3m40.727s

24.  P2     Ordonez/Brundle/Brundle             Greaves Zytek-Nissan         3m40.738s

25.  P2     Dolan/Hancock/Kurosawa              Jota Zytek-Nissan            3m41.287s

26.  P2     Mailleux/Lombard/Tresson            Signatech ORECA-Nissan       3m41.982s

27.  P2     Tucker/Bouchut/Diaz                 Level 5 HPD-Honda            3m42.224s

28.  P2     Zugel/Gonzalez/Julian               Greaves Zytek-Nissan         3m42.292s

29.  CDNT   Franchitti/Krumm/Motoyama           Highcroft Delta Wing Nissan  3m42.612s

30.  P2     Frey/Hirschi/Meichtry               Race Performance ORECA-Judd  3m43.619s

31.  P2     Holzer/Schultis/Moro                Kodewa Lola-Lotus            3m45.664s

32.  P2     Giroix/Johansson/Badey              Gulf Lola-Nissan             3m47.244s

33.  P2     Haezebrouck/Thirion/Rosier          Extreme Limite Norma-Judd    3m48.025s

34.  GTE P  Makowiecki/Melo/Farnbacher          Luxury Ferrari               3m55.393s

35.  GTE P  Fernandez/Mucke/Turner              Aston Martin                 3m55.870s

36.  GTE P  Gavin/Milner/Westbrook              Corvette                     3m55.910s

37.  GTE P  Bertolini/Beretta/Cioci             AF Corse Ferrari             3m56.484s

38.  GTE P  Taylor/Garcia/Magnussen             Corvette                     3m57.181s

39.  GTE A  Neiman/Pilet/Pumpelly               Flying Lizard Porsche        3m57.594s

40.  GTE P  Lieb/Lietz/Henzler                  Felbermayr-Proton Porsche    3m57.606s

41.  GTE P  Alfaisal/Curtis/Edwards             IMSA Porsche                 3m58.035s

42.  GTE P  Bergmeister/Long/Holzer             Flying Lizard Porsche        3m58.717s

43.  GTE A  Simonsen/Nygaard/Poulsen            Aston Martin                 3m58.725s

44.  GTE A  Ehret/Montecalvo/Jeannette          Luxury Ferrari               3m58.800s

45.  P2     Rostan/Ihara/Deletraz               Gulf Lola-Nissan             3m58.895s

46.  GTE A  Ried/Roda/Ruberti                   Felbermayr-Proton Porsche    3m59.181s

47.  GTE A  Bornhauser/Canal/Lamy               Larbre Corvette              3m59.192s

48.  GTE P  Walker/Cocker/Wills                 JMW Ferrari                  3m59.638s

49.  GTE P  Fisichella/Bruni/Vilander           AF Corse Ferrari             4m00.025s

50.  GTE A  Perazzini/Cadei/Griffin             AF Corse Ferrari             4m00.288s

51.  GTE A  Armindo/Narac/Pons                  IMSA Porsche                 4m00.332s

52.  GTE A  Kauffman/Aguas/Vickers              AF-Waltrip Ferrari           4m00.691s

53.  GTE A  Krohn/Jonsson/Rugolo                Krohn Ferrari                4m02.323s

54.  GTE A  Rodrigues/Ferte/Illiano             JMB Ferrari                  4m02.461s

55.  GTE A  Bourret/Gibon/Belloc                Larbre Corvette              4m02.969s

56.  GTE A  Camathias/Daniels/Palttala          JWA Porsche                  4m03.661s


Tim is co-founder of and works in international motorsport. He found his passion for sustainable racing by joining world's first competition for hydrogen electric vehicles in 2008. He does not doubt on the possibility of a break through of electric racing. And that deserves a platform to keep up to date and to interact. Tim operates on behalf of Formula Blue Media.


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