Volkswagen heading to 2018 edition of the famous hill climb with the all-electric course record in its sights and a win is predicted for the new I.D. R Pikes Peak.
Volkswagen has revealed its all-electric hill climb racer set to compete will in the 2018 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb this June.
Called the I.D. R Pikes Peak, Volkswagen is aiming to break the course record for electric vehicles at this year's Pikes Peak meeting. The current 8:57.118 time set in 2016 is in the firm's sights, with reigning overall champion, Romain Dumas, set to be behind the wheel.
Confirming the all-electric powertrain and four-wheel drive set-up, VW described the I.D. R Pikes Peak as its “technological ambassador for electromobility”, noting the “intensification” of the relationship between its Volkswagen R and Volkswagen Motorsport divisions.
The hill climb car's powertrain develops 671bhp thanks to two electric motors. 0-100km/h is quoted at 2.25 seconds, while hard, regenerative braking is expected to generate up to 20 percent of the required energy for the 19.99km run. The benefit of electric racecars is the instant maximum power at your disposal throughout the race. No more building up revs.
The I.D. R Pikes Peak forms part of a broader VW plan to introduce dozens of electric and plug-in hybrid models by 2025, with the first production I.D. hatch set to arrive in 2019.
Dr Frank Welsch, Volkswagen Member of the Board of Management with responsibility for Development, said: "We want to be at the forefront of electromobility with Volkswagen and the I.D. family.
"Competing in the most famous hill climb in the world with the I.D. R Pikes Peak not only has symbolic meaning but is also a valuable test for the general development of electric cars."
Volkswagen has competed at Pikes Peak three times before, with entries spanning from 1985 to 1987.
On those occasions, VW used a twin-engine Mk 2 Golf, finishing fourth fastest in 1986. The following year, the 652bhp Golf retired with suspension failure only a few corners from the end, having led proceedings during most of the run. The current Pikes Peak record was set in 2013 by Sébastien Loeb in a Peugeot 208 T16.
"It is about time we settled the score," said Volkswagen Motorsport Director, Sven Smeets, referring to the marque’s unsuccessful efforts at the Colorado hill climb. "The I.D. R Pikes Peak represents an extremely exciting challenge for us, to show what is possible with an electric engine in motorsport. The entire team is behind our driver, Romain Dumas, who is highly motivated to set a new record for electric cars."
The more high-end technology that goes into all sorts of motorsport, the more we will see this same technology roll out to production street cars thanks to all the research and development that motorsport delivers.