Audi R18 e-Tron quattro #2 – Spark

R18 #2
2014 Audi R18 e-Tron quattro #2
Pilots: A. Lotterer, M. Fässler, B. Tréluyer
Team: Audi Sport Team Joest
Race: 1st overall (LMP1 class) at Le Mans in 2014
Spark - 43LM14 (resin)

Published 01/12/24

Audi debuted at La Sarthe in 1998, with the R8C and the R8R. Though the R8C proved to be a flop, the R8R was the opposite – third place in its maiden race. Despite the fantastic result, the R8R was only a test project for Audi. Based on the experience gained with the R8R, In the following year they introduced the mighty R8. The R8 annihilated the competition, finishing in first, second and third. That was the beginning of Audi’s domination of Le Mans, winning again in 2001 and 2002. Bentley got in the way in 2003, however the R8 won again in 2004 and 2005. And by then, FIA intervened – for future races the R8 should carry ballast and use bigger air restrictors. However, Audi wasn’t standing still, they already had a successor – the R10. Powered by a diesel V12, the R10 won in 2006, 2007 and 2008.

R18 #2
Powering the R18 #2 was a 3.7 liter-V6 with added electric motors for the front wheels.

In 2009 it was Peugeot’s turn to upset Audi, with their 908 HDi. Undeterred, in 2010 Audi came back to the podium with R15. For the following year, FIA changed the rule sauce, and from 2011 onward a closed-cockpit design was necessary. That being so, Ingolstadt unleashed the new R18. And again, it was a champion car, winning Le Mans in 2011, 2012 and 2013. The following year would be the last year for an Audi at La Sarthe. Audi’s factory team, Team Joest, arrived at La Sarthe with two R18 (e-Tron quattro, written just like that). Though starting in fifth and sixth, by the ninth hour car #2 took the lead. Later on Porsche’s 919 got ahead, however with two hours to go it had mechanical issues. With that, the R-18 #2 took the lead and stayed there to the checkered flag. It was Audi’s 13th Le Mans win.

R18 #2
As always with Spark, detail level is top-notch.

In 1:43rd scale, the R18 #2 is just as gorgeous as my other Audi winners from Spark. And in the same boring Audi-white-silver-red-black livery of all the other R18 🙄. Oh yes, I had to write “2014” with a sharpie on the undercarriage, just like I did with my Toyotas. Nonetheless, lack of enticing livery aside, I’m thrilled to finally have one. 

Finally! All the Audi winners are in the W-143 Garage!

I’ve been after the 2014 R18 #2 for years. Though I can’t fathom why, this model became absurdly hard to find. I had no trouble getting the other Audi winners, except for this one. Low run? Who knows, the fact is that it took a looooong while to get one for the W-143 Garage. And I only got one because fortunately Spark reissued the model last year. Now that it’s here, I finally have all the Le Mans winners from Audi 😊.

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