Audi discuss hydrogen-powered LMP1 possibilities

  • 03 Aug 2016 10:28
  • comments 0
  • By: Dominik Wilde

Audi have said they would be able to build a hydrogen-powered Le Mans prototype but has no plans to do so at the moment.

Speaking to Autocar magazine, Audi's head of road car technical development Stefan Knirsch said that using a hydrogen cell in a LMP1 car "could be possible".

The German marque unveiled the hydrogen-powered h-tron quattro SUV in Detroit earlier this year to demonstrate the technology.

Audi's racing division, however, is not working on anything utilising the technology at the moment according to Audi Sport boss Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich.

"At the moment Audi Sport is not working on a project, but that doesn't mean that we won't look into it in the future," he said.

The next set of LMP1 regulations, set to be introduced some time after 2021, is currently being discussed and whilst not ruling out the possibility of having hydrogen cars alongside the existing petrol and diesel hybrids, Dr. Ullrich said that it would be difficult.

"It has to be discussed, but introducing hydrogen alongside diesel and petrol [gasoline] will not be easy," said the Austrian.

Audi has also warned that the development of hydrogen technology must mirror their road car plans before they commit to using it in a racing environment.

A hydrogen-powered entry was set to compete in the 2013 24 Hours of Le Mans but was withdrawn. The Swiss GreenGT team was awarded the Garage 56 entry for experimental cars and despite not competing, they have continued to develop the technology and they demonstrated the latest version of their car at this year's 24 Hours of Le Mans race.

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