Aston Martin Says No to Le Mans Diesel

Aston Martin Racing boss David Richards said his team will not switch to diesels like the dominant Peugeot and Audi teams have done in order to win the Le Mans 24 Hours race. Audi and Peugeot use diesel engines on their prototypes and the two brands have proven to be unbeatable since 2006, winning three (2006, 2007, 2008) and one (2009) races respectively.

But despite the diesel engine’s success at Le Mans, Aston Martin is determined to continue to use petrol engines. The team entered last year a Le Mans prototype that used a gasoline unit and managed to be the top petrol-powered car, finishing fourth overall, nine laps behing the winning Peugeot 908 HDi.

And petrol-powered cars could be helped by the organizing body (ACO), which will be modifying rules in the next 12 months in order to reduce the advantage of diesels compared to the petrols and hybrids. David Richards told Autocar that Aston Martin would continue to develope it’s V12 petrol unit instead of switching to diesel.

I cannot envisage Aston Martin building a diesel sports car. We have been promised a more level playing field next year by the Automobile Club de l’Ouest and we are seeking further assurances on that,” Aston’s racing boss said.

And Richards is not very pleased by the perspective of using hybrid technology either. “Will we need to adopt hybrid technology in the future? We’d rather see a scenario where there is greater variety. If Aston Martin chooses to build a lighter car that is powered by petrol, then we’d like that to be accepted and reflected in the rules,” Richards is quoted as saying by Autocar.
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