Volkswagen to Take on Pikes Peak with Electric Racing Car and Romain Dumas

VW electric race car teaser 1 photo
Photo: VW
Last October, German automaker Volkswagen announced its return to the Pikes Peak, 30 years after it last entered the world's most famous hill climb. The comeback is supposed to be the stuff of legend, staring a purpose-built electric vehicle, VW's first fully electric racing car.
To handle the electric monster, VW convinced Le Mans winner Romain Dumas to take the wheel on June 24. One factor that weighed in his favor was the fact that he is no stranger to electric car racing, having competed in the FIA World Endurance Championship as part of the Porsche works team in a hybrid prototype.

The Germans chose to make a comeback to the Race to the Clouds with an EV because the climb's regulations allow for “a high level of technical freedom in this class.”

“This allows us to demonstrate the efficiency of Volkswagen's future battery and drivetrain technology in a competitive environment. An additional challenge lies in the fact that the race track on Pikes Peak is a normal road, where both the weather and road conditions are more frequently subject to change,” said Volkswagen Motorsport Director Sven Smeets in a statement.

The Pikes Peak Hill Climb is an annual automobile and motorcycle race climbing 4,720 ft (1,440 m) from the start at Mile 7 on Pikes Peak Highway, to the finish at 14,110 ft (4,300 m). The road consists of over 156 turns spread over a 12.42 miles (19.99 km) distance.

There are no details yet on what the performances of Volkswagen's race car will be. It is to be expected that the carmaker will use the event as a proof-of-concept tool designed to showcase the viability of a fully-electric race car in low-oxygen environments.

Not using a combustion engine, the race car will be capable of maintaining constant power as it climbs to the top, a trait which promises to make a big difference.
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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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