One would have thought that royally stuffing the opposition at this year’s Le Mans 24 hrs would have been enough for Audi. But as it turns out, as well as the first win at La Sarthe for a hybrid racecar, the Bavarian marque had another legendary track in its battery-powered sights.
Audi has just announced that its R8-etron – with GT1 World Championship race winner Markus Winkelhock at the wheel – has set a new record lap around the Nurburgring for a production vehicle with an electric drive system.
The new world record (bearing in mind that the petrol-powered V10 R8 counterpart lapped the same circuit three years ago in 7m 44s) is a pretty impressive 8m 9s. Or 8m 9.99s if we’re going to quibble.
Now we’ve learnt over the years at crankandpiston that electric cars – even if we often speak about them in hushed tones and when those of a judgemental temperament has left the room – can be fast. Very fast. Take the Tesla Roadster, for example, which raised many an eyebrow when the team got its grubby mitts on it not too long ago.