Here's the thing about the Audi R18 and all the other 2014 LMP1 prototypes: they're tiny.
LMP1 prototypes are the top class at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, but what they have in importance, they don't have in stature.
Here are the stats for the 2014 Audi R18, pinched off of its French, German, and English Wikipedia pages.
- Length: 4,650mm (15ft,3in)
- Width: 1,900mm (6ft, 3in)
- Height: 1,050mm (3ft,5in or 41 inches if you're comparing it to the old Ford GT40)
Here are some things that are much bigger than the R18:
- Your apartment
- My apartment
- The world's largest rubberband ball
- Your dad's Toyota Camry
- Hell, your sister's new Corolla is bigger
- Your aunt's Solara, too
- Every GT racecar at the 24 Hours of Le Mans
Here are some cars that just barely bigger than the R18:
- Your rich friend's dad's Audi R8 (8 inches shorter and just as wide, but 9 inches taller)
- Your rich uncle's Porsche 911 (6 inches shorter and 4 inches narrower, but 10 inches taller)
- Your rich cousin's boyfriend's Ferrari 458 (5 inches shorter, but an inch wider and 7 inches taller)
Here are some things that are smaller than the Audi R18
- A bouquet of roses
- A Caterham Seven (without the windshield)
- A Caterham Seven filled with bouquets of roses
- Your couch (probably)
I hope that answers your question as to how small an Audi R18 is. Basically, it's about as long as a regular two-door coupe on sale today, but it's a good bit narrower, and much lower even at its highest point.
Take a look at the R18 in the pits and how small it is compared to the mechanics working on the car.
Moreover, most cars are shaped like boxes. Most of their dimensions is taken up by, well, the car itself. The Audi R18 and the other LMP1 cars cut out just about everything but the little turret where the driver sits and the fenders covering the wheels. The rest of the car is pancaked down into as little space as possible.
These LMP1 racers are even smaller than their small dimensions suggest.
For some reason Audi hasn't published any pictures of their R18 next to any other car, but it is identical in dimensions to its corporate cousin, the Porsche 919. Porsche put out these pictures comparing the 919 to their new 911 racecar.
Don't worry about the perspective here — the 911 just about dwarfs the prototype 919.
Below you can see the real difference in height. Much of what makes these LMP1 cars as tall as they are is just the roof scoop air intake. The height of the cockpit's roof is even lower.
You can imagine how much a regular sedan would tower over a 2014 LMP1 car at your local hardware store, let alone how a current SUV would lord over it. You couldn't fit a 2014 LMP1 car in the back of an F-350, but you might be tempted.
Please do not try and put any LMP1 cars in the back of any pickups. Audi would get mad at me.
Photo Credits: Audi, Porsche