It is not going to be easy. Toyota has a very strong challenger and Audi is prepared to defend their title with their best LMP1 car yet. So how does the 919 Hybrid stack up?
The monocoque is made out of carbon fiber with an aluminum honeycomb core. The engine is a V4 gasoline engine with 2.0 liters of displacement that is turbocharged. It is said to make over 500 horsepower. The hybrid drivetrain features a KERS energy recovery system with water cooled lithium-ion battery packs that feed an electric motor on the front axle good for about 250 horsepower. Additionally, Porsche has two energy recovery systems including one that recoups thermal energy from the exhaust gases using an electric generator. This is a major point of differentiation between Porsche and the LMP1 competition.
Porsche is likely sandbagging their power ratings a bit especially considering Toyota is bringing 900+ horses to the table.
How much does it weigh? 870 kilograms, the minimum allowed and the exact same as the Audi R18 E-Tron Quattro. They managed to meet the minimum while conforming to updated safety regulations which certainly is impressive.
How will Porsche fare after a 16 year absence during which Audi has dominated while Porsche did not participate in LMP1 competition? That is a good question. Toyota, Audi, and Porsche all have hybrid drivetrains but where they differ significantly is in their internal combustion approaches. Will Porsche's car with its 2.0 liter turbo gasoline motor and its thermal energy recovery system revving to 9000 rpm beat its larger displacement competition? Will Audi's turbo 3.7 liter diesel approach win out? Will Toyota's naturally aspirated 3.4 liter V8 prove to be too much to overcome?
It is going to be a lot of fun to watch the world's best duke it out in a competition of endurance, engineering, and team driving on one of the most famous and storied Motorsport stages.
Video and photo credit to Dr. Gumo Lunatic https://www.youtube.com/user/DrGumoLunatic