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How the Audi RS Q e-tron will electrify the Dakar Rally | Autocar

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A driver line-up that endures

The ultimate essential aspect of any doubtlessly race-winning bundle is the driving force. In its Dakar Rally line-up, Audi boasts three of the perfect. Frenchman Stephane Peterhansel is called ‘Mr Dakar’, because of his six wins on a bike and eight wins in a automobile. Carlos Sainz is a three-times World Rally Champion, who has since added three Dakar wins to his tally. Lastly, there’s former DTM touring automobile champion and World Rallycross ace Mattias Ekstrom, an Audi veteran.

“Ultimately, the drivers and co-drivers make the distinction within the Dakar Rally,” says Andreas Roos. “The truth that we’ll have three groups of drivers and co-drivers competing on the very highest degree is reassuring.”

Equally, endurance as simply as necessary as velocity for surviving – and finally successful – the Dakar Rally. During the last 5 months, the Audi RS Q e-tron has undergone a complete and gruelling testing schedule throughout rocky and desert roads in Spain and Morocco. “With all the pieces you develop, it’s a must to suppose: ‘Will this final? Will this be potential?’,” says Andreas. “Prior to now, our Le Mans prototypes needed to final 24 hours. Now we’d like a automobile which has to final 14 days within the desert.”

As Q Motorsport staff principal (and Dakar Rally veteran) Sven Quandt factors out, Audi’s bid to take the primary electrified win within the Dakar Rally’s historical past shouldn’t be not like the problem of the 1969 Moon landings. “Again then, the engineers didn’t know what was coming or what to anticipate,” he jokes. “It’s the identical for us as we speak.

“Audi has all the time chosen new daring paths in racing, however I feel this is without doubt one of the most complicated vehicles I’ve ever seen. The Dakar is without doubt one of the final nice distinctive adventures on the earth, and you’ll study rather a lot from it – particularly if you happen to select an revolutionary path like Audi with its electrical drivetrain. 

“You will have all of the issues that matter – totally different terrains, robust situations, excessive and low temperatures, rain, solar and plenty of kilometres pushed per day. In case your know-how can survive the Dakar Rally, it is going to be profitable in all places.”


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