Defending champions Audi on Le Mans pole

Audi R18 E-Tron Quattro N°1 driven by German Andre Lotterer competes during the third qualifying session of the 80th edition of Le Mans 24 hours endurance race, in Le Mans, western France

Audi's Andre Lotterer, Benoit Treluyer and Marcel Fassler, the defending champions, took pole on Thursday for this year's Le Mans 24 Hour Race.

German driver Lotterer set the best time of 3 min 23.787sec, two seconds better than the time set by Treluyer last year.

The 80th edition of the famed endurance race, which will feature 56 vehicles, gets underway on Saturday.

"It's great to have pole," said Lotterer. "I took my chance, we had a clear lap. We did a good job and the car was well-prepared for the course.

"For the moment, it's all going well."

Audi, with 10 wins in the last 12 races, locked out the front row with the Toyota of Anthony Davidson in third place.