Le Mans Ultimate Online: Two Things To Check Before Racing

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Playing Le Mans Ultimate online can be a great sim racing experience – there are two things to keep an eye on that might otherwise hold you back, however.

Le Mans Ultimate has hit Early Access in late February, and its online mode has proven popular since. The Race Control system first tested in rFactor 2 provides players with Daily and Weekly Races, as well as Special Events. The Daily events look to provide an even playing field, with setups usually being fixed.

That means that for these races, you simply need to show up, click ‘drive’ and compete, right? In theory, yes – but despite setups being fixed, there are two key things that you should keep an eye on and that LMU does not tell you about.

Le Mans Ultimate Online: Engine Mode​

UPDATE: After checking and testing things again, it does seem that engine maps indeed do not have an effect in the LMP2 at this point. The experience described below was a combination of a stronger grid in the first race and some good ol' placebo, too. Still, making it a habit to check this setting is a good idea so you are on top of things once the engine maps actually do have an effect on the car.

After the release of Patch 1 for the game, I streamed Le Mans Ultimate online, taking on some of the daily races. Two were alternating at this point, those being LMP2 Fixed at Monza, and GTE Fixed at Sebring. It was the former that was up first, which should have been a decent starting point – most sim racers could probably do Monza in their sleep.

And yet, I qualified a lowly 15th out of 19 cars. Now, I am certainly no alien, but this seemed a tad low to me – but hey, could be that a bunch of very fast people raced at that time, too. However, what made me really think was how I could not keep up with other cars in a straight line, despite being in their draft (which must have been down to them getting better exits, as it turned out).

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It was the following GTE race when it finally clicked, though. Going through the MFD pages, I noticed that my Porsche 911 RSR-19 GTE had its engine mode set to ‘Race Lean’ by default, so I cranked that up. This raised a suspicion – was this also the case in the LMP2?

"Slow Mode" By Default​

So, back to Monza it was, and sure enough, the engine mode was set to ‘Safety Car’. That certainly explained things – and the Oreca 07 only features two engine modes, the other being ‘Race’.

Long story short: Make sure to switch your engine mode up from the slowest mode. Ideally, this should also get changed in a future update so the cars start in a more appropriate engine mode by default in the future.

Le Mans Ultimate Online: Fuel Load​

Aside from the in-car adjustments, Fixed Setup races mean that everyone should start the race with the exact same car parameters. That is not quite the case, however. At least in the races I tried, it was possible to adjust your car’s fuel load.

And normally, LMU overfills the tank by quite a margin. You will not need a full stint’s worth of fuel to compete in a 16-minute Weekly Race, and even less for qualifying. So, to find out how much you want to be carrying, simply drive a few practice laps and check the average fuel consumption in the MFD.

Once you know your lap average (after adjusting your engine mode, of course), you can then calculate how much fuel you will need for the race based on lap times and the race length. Make sure to put in one or two more laps worth of fuel to account for an unexpected extra lap should you be faster than anticipated, though.


How has your Le Mans Ultimate online experience been so far? Let us know on Twitter @OverTake_gg or in the comments below!
About author
Yannik Haustein
Lifelong motorsport enthusiast and sim racing aficionado, walking racing history encyclopedia.

Sim racing editor, streamer and one half of the SimRacing Buddies podcast (warning, German!).

Heel & Toe Gang 4 life :D

Comments

Premium
These are valid points. But another issue is that assists are enabled below Gold level. Want ABS on your GTE car? No problem, just stick that assist on. Stability control? Yes please! Some people are reporting fairly significant lap time gains with these. There are supposed to be weight penalties for them, but they seem to have little effect.
 
Unless they fixed it in the last patch and never bothered to put it on the changelog, engine maps do nothing at the moment, as there is no change in speed or fuel usage from Safety car map to qualy map.

So you must have found the straight line speed in another way
 
Club Staff
Premium
These are valid points. But another issue is that assists are enabled below Gold level. Want ABS on your GTE car? No problem, just stick that assist on. Stability control? Yes please! Some people are reporting fairly significant lap time gains with these. There are supposed to be weight penalties for them, but they seem to have little effect.
I believe weight penalties will be implemented in the future.
 
These are valid points. But another issue is that assists are enabled below Gold level. Want ABS on your GTE car? No problem, just stick that assist on. Stability control? Yes please! Some people are reporting fairly significant lap time gains with these. There are supposed to be weight penalties for them, but they seem to have little effect.
It spoils it for me. It's a simulator - if you can't drive a certain car without traction control competitively, you shouldn't be racing it competitively.

The weight penalties in RF2 are nothing. If you want ABS or TCS for example, it's normally something like 5-15kg. Which is not even close to the advantage that ABS or TCS brings. I hope they are a lot harsher with these in LMU. Don't give people the fastest car because they have all the assists on, that is no fun at all.
 
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These are valid points. But another issue is that assists are enabled below Gold level. Want ABS on your GTE car? No problem, just stick that assist on. Stability control? Yes please! Some people are reporting fairly significant lap time gains with these. There are supposed to be weight penalties for them, but they seem to have little effect.
Over the years, from as far back as Nascar3, I always felt the AI were more affected by weight penalty's than human drivers. No matter how much weight we piled on, the fast guys were stil the fast guys.
 
It spoils it for me. It's a simulator - if you can't drive a certain car without traction control competitively, you shouldn't be racing it competitively.

As stated by the devs themselves, it is a game made for everyone to play that also happens to be a fairly in-depth simulator. I don't use the assists myself, but they are trying to broaden the game's appeal. Whether the user has a wheel, gamepad, keyboard or whatever your favoured form of controller is. They want, understandably, as many people as possible to get into it.

Also, it is only bronze licence races where full assists are allowed. Once you get your safety licence to a place where you can do the silver (low assists only) and gold (no assists allowed) licence races, it'll become less of an issue over time. I'm sure we'll see more events for silver and gold as more people attain those licences over time.

Some people want to play the game more casually, whether that be online or offline, and there's nothing wrong with that.
 
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I bought this game, but have yet to install it. I will wait until it "opens it's eyes". I find it interesting that game developers refuse to call beta software, beta. Early access is beta. You can put high heels and a dress on it, it's still a cow.
 
Premium
As stated by the devs themselves, it is a game made for everyone to play that also happens to be a fairly in-depth simulator. I don't use the assists myself, but they are trying to broaden the game's appeal. Whether the user has a wheel, gamepad, keyboard or whatever your favoured form of controller is. They want, understandably, as many people as possible to get into it.

Also, it is only bronze licence races where full assists are allowed. Once you get your safety licence to a place where you can do the silver (low assists only) and gold (no assists allowed) licence races. I'm sure we'll see more events for silver and gold as more people attain those licences over time.

Some people want to play the game more casually, whether that be online or offline, and there's nothing wrong with that.
The problem isn’t the assists as such , more that they are not balanced . Someone using abs can gain seconds a lap . So if you want to compete you either have to be significantly faster or use the assists yourself .
 
The problem isn’t the assists as such , more that they are not balanced . Someone using abs can gain seconds a lap . So if you want to compete you either have to be significantly faster or use the assists yourself .
I absolutely understand this point of view. From what they've said in the Discord they are investigating the best way to tackle the outright advantage the assists seem to offer. We'll hopefully get a solution soon. :)
 
Premium
Of course none of this matters if you managed to qualify in the top 4 and get punted in the first corner:) What they really need in the "low level races" is a way to eliminate punting in the first two corners. They also need to figure out the start so that the front cars go at a steady pace until the green light goes on. I have had way to many races ruined by the leaders brake checking the cars behind and then it bunches everyone up so that there is random violence in the first corners. I just wish they could keep the cars at a steady gap until the green light so that a rolling start actually helped.
 
Premium
I'm also interested in whether cockpit view is mandated. I get the impression that a lot of the cars are driving from the bumper or hood view. That would explain why they drive over you when you are right beside them.
 
As stated by the devs themselves, it is a game made for everyone to play that also happens to be a fairly in-depth simulator. I don't use the assists myself, but they are trying to broaden the game's appeal. Whether the user has a wheel, gamepad, keyboard or whatever your favoured form of controller is. They want, understandably, as many people as possible to get into it.

Also, it is only bronze licence races where full assists are allowed. Once you get your safety licence to a place where you can do the silver (low assists only) and gold (no assists allowed) licence races. I'm sure we'll see more events for silver and gold as more people attain those licences over time.

Some people want to play the game more casually, whether that be online or offline, and there's nothing wrong with that.
There's nothing wrong with it at all. Drivers of all ranks should have an option to race in modes where only real/no assists are allowed though. I know the first response is something along the lines of splitting player groups being bad with a small population, but to force people of any rank to either play unrealistically and ruin their sim experience or to race realistically and be handicapped is poor form. Accessible or not, this is a far cry from forza or gt7.
 
I've taken to verifying before each race just to make sure... Seems to nearly always pick up missing files... And I haven't had the CTDs I was having before starting that ritual... Do it for AMS2 as well because it's also painful sometimes...

But this is by far the best experience I've had from a developer for Hypercars and multiclass racing...

If only there weren't so many things to keep me away from those 90-120 minute races... I have to make more of them during winter...
 
Wonder if it's going the simcade direction with those assists enabled, majority uses those now even on split 1
 
OverTake
Premium
I believe weight penalties will be implemented in the future.
Weight penalties are already in the system from rf2. I have not tried the final release of LMU yet, given MSG took the game away from me ;)

But in rF2 online there were not a way to disable aids, perhaps they fixed that for LMU.
It is very well known that aids usually helps, also why every driver in LMVS used ABS.
1710491624389.png

URD car example.

LMU was designed for "the masses" even rf2 online was that as well, to let more people join - call it simcade or not, but yeah it would be fixed by using correct "aidpenalties" in the .veh files or simply allow it in rookie but not in advanced etc.
 
IMO in the rookies it is fine, seems they crash way to much there anyway, but that would be about it. But, yeah, depends on what audience they target, hard to keep all happy.
 
OverTake
Premium
Slight update on my end: It does appear that the engine map in the LMP2 does nothing as of right now. So the finding described in the article was a combination of a stronger grid in the first race and some nice placebo :D I have updated that section accordingly.
Thanks @Vitor M Sousa for bringing it up and making me check this again!
 
Premium
I also noticed that it always starts me in the 'Race Lean' engine map, at least in the cars I've raced by now, but it didn't take me long to chek beforehand. I'm used to checking the setup from AMS2 anyways. Also, if there is no effect yet, then no harm done anyways.

What I find more irksome is that track and weather conditions aren't saved, at least after restarting the whole game. I always have to set them again, even on the same car & track combo. And that I think the low grip on cold tire is a bit overdone on the LM(D)h cars, but they're fine after two or three laps. I have not played it recently, so both of those could be fixed by now.

All in all I have quite some fun, the LMP2 at Fuji is my favourite currentl, drives really really great.
 
These are valid points. But another issue is that assists are enabled below Gold level. Want ABS on your GTE car? No problem, just stick that assist on. Stability control? Yes please! Some people are reporting fairly significant lap time gains with these. There are supposed to be weight penalties for them, but they seem to have little effect.
I can't believe this & why I did not realize this earlier. Thanks for the hint!
Maybe that is the case why I have to break so much earlier & different than the other players.
It would explain why I get rear ended in breaking-zones a lot!
 
I can't believe this & why I did not realize this earlier. Thanks for the hint!
Maybe that is the case why I have to break so much earlier & different than the other players.
It would explain why I get rear ended in breaking-zones a lot!
I found in RF2 that I was really competitive in the BMW M2, which happens to have ABS built in, but mid-field or worse in anything else. It was this that made me realise that everyone else is using assists like ice cream toppings.
 

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