December 5, 2006 Despite Renault’s second successive Formula One driver/manufacturer double, it was Audi’s revolutionary R10 TDI that really shook up the motorsport world in 2006 and a flurry of significant awards is now confirming that. A panel of experts from the British specialist magazine "Race Engine Technology” recently voted the V12 TDI engine from the Audi R10 TDI as "Race Engine of the Year 2006” and "Alternative Race Engine of the Year”. To top it off, on Sunday night Audi won the "Pioneering and Innovation Award” of the British magazine "Autosport” for the most important innovation of the 2006 motorsport season. The diesel race engine not only puts out 650 bhp but also produces brutal mid-range torque and has remarkably good fuel consumption. It finished its first season undefeated including taking the Le Mans 24 Hour Event.
Head of Audi Motorsport Dr Wolfgang Ullrich accepted the prestigious trophy Sunday evening in London in front of over 1,000 guests. The 650-hp diesel sportscar won the legendary Le Mans 24 Hours in June just 200 days after its roll-out. Audi has thus become the first car manufacturer in the over 80-year long history of Le Mans to win the endurance classic with a diesel engine. The R10 TDI remained also unbeaten in its first American Le Mans Series’ season winning all seven races it competed in and giving Audi another title in the world’s most popular sportscar series. "When we informed our potential suppliers about the diesel project, they asked us if we really wanted to do this,” said Head of Audi Motorsport Dr Wolfgang Ullrich at the prize giving ceremony in London. "It was taking a big risk. We knew that. But who else could have done it except Audi?”