Volkswagen EV Smashes Pikes Peak Hill Climb Record
Volkswagen’s electric racing car beat the fastest climb record at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.
The record was set by the Volkswagen 500-kW ID R. The driver, Romain Dumas, not only beat the previous record for electric vehicles but also shattered the all-time record by 16 seconds.
Dumas’s new record of 7 minutes 57.148 seconds is now on top of the list of Pikes Peak champions, which includes accomplished drivers such as Sebastian Loeb, Walter Röhrl, Michèle Mouton, Stig Blomqvist, Nobuhiro Tajima, and Rod Millen.
The Pikes Peak Hill Climb, also known as The Race to the Clouds, is an automobile and motorcycle race at Pikes Peak in Colorado. Participants get one attempt to tackle 156 turns on the 12.42-mile track.
Dumas believes that he could have completed the race at least 10 seconds earlier if the weather were better. His turn was delayed due to an accident by an earlier competitor.
“When I got out of the second sector, the fog went and the grip came back at the top. I knew it was good, I braked early for the final hairpin to take no risk,” Damas told Autosport.
Volkswagen tailored the competing car to the demands of Pikes Peak. The company used simulation software to calculate how to achieve the best performance and results. More importantly, the car was developed in just eight months.
“The I.D. R Pikes Peak is the sporty forerunner of Volkswagen’s I.D. family. Today, we saw what this technology is capable of,” said Dr. Frank Welsch, member of the Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand’s board of management. “With a combination of outstanding engineering skills, passion, and commitment, the team has managed to create a fantastic racing car in just eight months. The Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak has now set the fastest time in the history of this hill climb, which spans more than 100 years — that speaks volumes for electric mobility.”
Moreover, Volkswagen used a new charging technology that charges the car quickly and without using too much energy. The car is fueled by glycerol, which combusts with almost no dangerous exhaust fumes or residue.
“The I.D. R Pikes Peak is the most impressive car I have ever driven in competition,” Dumas said. “The electric drivetrain means that many things are different and I learned a lot during the project. Not only did we get the desired result, but the team spirit was also spot on. I am incredibly proud to have been a part of it.”