Volkswagen first teased its all-electric racer in October and boldly declared that it had been conceived with one goal in mind: to finish the Pikes Peak mountain race in record time. Electric vehicles have a had a good time of it recently on Colorado's most famous (at least in automotive circles) hill.
First and second place went to electric cars in 2015, and then Rhys Millen broke the nine-minute barrier in 2016 in a modified electric eO, a first for an EV, finishing the race in eight minutes and 57.11 seconds. A Tesla SP90D, meanwhile, holds the record for a production EV at 11 minutes and 48 seconds.
And Volkswagen's newly named I.D. R Pikes Peak is built specifically to best them all. There remains little detail available on the four-wheel drive racer, although the company has offered a couple of new renders to go along with the mysterious silhouette it shared last year.
Volkswagen sees its Pikes Peak ambitions as an important step not just in racing, but in its overall electric vehicle strategy. It has previously outlined plans to offer more than 20-fully electric cars by 2025, and sees the race as a valuable proving ground for the tech that will go inside them. It last entered Pikes Peak in 1987 with a dual engine Golf.
"It is about time we settled the score," says Volkswagen Motorsport Director, Sven Smeets. "The I.D. R Pikes Peak represents an extremely exciting challenge for us, to show what is possible in motorsport with an electric drivetrain. The entire team behind our driver Romain Dumas is highly motivated to set a new record for electric cars."
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