It used to be that racecar builders like Alfa Romeo, Porsche and Ferrari would construct special low-drag “longtail” versions of their sport prototypes for high speed tracks like Le Mans, Daytona and Monza. But as those tracks were reconfigured to reduce vehicle speeds, the need for such extended-rump specials disappeared; the last one we can think of is the McLaren F1 GTR Longtail of the late 1990s. This makes us sad.
However, the fact that Audi has created a longtail version of its R18 e-tron quattro diesel-electric hybrid (set to debut at this weekend’s 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps) has turned our frown upside down. And this video taken by Italian racing paparazzo 19Bozzy92 makes our smile even bigger. It shows Audi’s latest LMP racer blasting right past Monza’s tight first chicane and hauling the mail through the long, sweeping Curva Grande at a speed our cameraman estimates to be above 211 mph. And that sound? Just plain incredible! If we close our eyes we can almost picture that 3.7L V6 turbodiesel is wooshing its way through turn 1 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in the back of a Dallara DW12. Oh well, maybe it is in some parallel universe (maybe the one where we’re behind the wheel of it).