Gallery: This is the new Audi R18 Hybrid, caught testing at Sebring

Rumors of an R18 Hybrid have been floating around for awhile now, but it wasn’t until today that we had confirmation that the cars testing at Sebring were of the new Hybrid variety. In addition to the hybrid components, the car is also rumored to have an entirely new monocoque that is aimed to provide with improved visibility. You can see very clearly that the R18H and R18 from this season have several subtle design differences. Audi hasn’t come out and announced their plans yet but the fact that they are now testing out in the open like this lends us to think that we will be hearing official word soon. Once thing is certain, Audi is preparing very hard for the FIA World Endurance Championship for 2012 and we couldn’t be more excited! 

To make this a bit easier we have paired together a few pictures comparing the 2011 R18 and 2012 R18 Hybrid. 

Our spy photographers were able to capture these high resolution images. Enjoy!

13 Responses to “Gallery: This is the new Audi R18 Hybrid, caught testing at Sebring”

  1. 1 Mike

    This year for Audi Team America was lucky and unlucky at the same time at Le Mans 24 hour race because they won but rest of the cars got crashed.

    But this new hybrid looks stunning and hopefully will beat the competition next year.

  2. 2 Zachary

    Looks like an absolute beast!

  3. 3 Audi

    What leads you to believe this is a hybrid, and not just an updated R18?

  4. 4 Jose

    It seems weird. If it is a Hybrid why it still says TDI (Turbo Diesel Injection) in the rear spoiler ;-). I expect to see something like TDI-Hybrid or TDIH.

    Also after taking a closer look at the pictures I can see that the front and lower rear spoiler are a little different. Maybe this is just a slightly modify TDI R18 to comply with new Le Mans or American Le mans regulations.

  5. 5 John Carter

    TDI stands for Turbo Direct Injection, not Turbo Diesel Injection. This is a common misconception.

  6. 6 Audi

    Agreed, but there is nothing on this vehicle to suggest it is a hybrid of any sort. So I’m skeptical to believe there is a hybrid R18 in the U.S, and not just an “updated” R18 diesel.

  7. 7 Mike

    As this is a test vehicle why are you expecting the outside livery to be accurate? The final cars will not be black.

    The meta tags on the Official Audi Sport Photos where labeled R18H. It looks like somebody inadvertently gave it away.

    As well as the easily noticeable changes. We believe this car has a whole new tub and suspension setup. The suspension was re-designed to increase the mechanical grip and increase the speed of the R18.

  8. 8 R.Molina


  9. 9 Flying Lizard

    As far as actual proof that the car is running a hybrid system, from what I can see:
    1)there is a bulge on the left hand side of the engine compartment behind the door, meaning they are accomidating a new component at the sacrifice of aero.
    2)thre are two new slit intakes on the sidepods for cooling (again, most likely a new component, since further cooling of existing components could have been done in other ways.
    3)(speculation) the intake looks wider to me, and the only way the intake would be allowed to get BIGGER would be if the class of powertrain changed, saaayyy from non hybrid to hybrid.
    4)(speculation) the engine cover itself looks like it has been made to curve a bit higher than it used to, to give more space for new components.
    5) (1/2 speculation) in the rear shots you can see an orange duct that is not there in the 2011 version. I’ve worked on race cars and that type and color ducting is almost always cooling related. If the inlets mentioned earlier are indeed to cool a new component, then that means there is cooling air that has to be exhausted somewhere, and it is not ideal,aerodynamically speaking, to just pet it loose in the engine compartment. I think that is the temporary exhause exit to a new component which is taking the place of a permanent duct that is still in the works.

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