Two-time 24 Hours of Le Mans winner files an exclusive video blog for RoadandTrack.com, discussing the unique flywheel-based energy recovery hybrid system that powers the front wheels of his .
Here are a few of the more interesting comments about the 200 hp boost the e-tron system adds to the 510 hp the 3.7-liter single-turbo diesel V-6 delivers to the prototype's rear wheels:
"We're debuting the Audi R18 e-tron quattro at Le Mans this year, and it's quite a different car—certainly for us."
"We're also running a quattro [4-wheel drive] system with a hybrid. So therefore, under braking, we harvest the energy through the front wheels which go into a motor generating unit (MGU), transfers that to electricity, goes to a flywheel which basically sits next to me, spins up to 45,000 revs per minute, I accelerate again, that energy goes back to the MGUs, they fire it through the driveshafts to the front wheels, and off we go."
"We weren't exactly sure how it was going to be in terms of car balance coming out of corners, and how it was going to affect things like tire wear or the feeling over the course of a race or what it would be like in the wet. So all of these things we're still developing even today and trying to build up our understanding and knowledge."
Exclusive Photos: 2012 24 Hours of Le Mans >>