Volkswagen returns for the first time in more than 30 years with a vengeance

The Pikes Peak Hill Climb is just days away, and it already looks like Volkswagen and its I.D. R Pikes Peak Racer is going to propose itself as a strong proposition, setting the fastest qualifying time thus far.

Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak and its Infamous Run

Romain Dumas, has managed to set a qualifying time of 3:16.083 – the fastest time thus far and offsetting second place by more than 11 seconds.

The Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak is an all-electric racer designed in-house by Volkswagen and is built around the brand’s latest EV tech. It is the companies first all-electric race car and Pikes Peak is the first competition it will be driven in. And, so far, things are looking good. Its driver, Romain Dumas, has managed to set a qualifying time of 3:16.083 – the fastest time thus far and offsetting second place by more than 11 seconds.

“That was a very good day for us,” said Romain Dumas. “The I.D. R Pikes Peak is incredible. I have never experienced acceleration and power like that in a racing car. I am noticing how the car and I are becoming more and more of a unit with every kilometer,”

Keep in mind that this isn’t necessarily mean that Volkswagen will win the Pikes Peak Hill Climb in the all-electric class or set any records. The qualifying run is merely the first section of the course, or 8.3 km of the 19.99 km overall distance. Should the I.D. R Pikes Peak retain the best qualifying run, however, it will be the first to start when it comes time for cars to start heading up the hills. Motorcycles kick off in the morning, and for now, Dumas is scheduled to make the first car run as early as 18:00 CEST or about 2 hours after the event starts.

The Volkswagen I. D. R Pikes Peak Qualifies First, Setting Expectations for Winning and Record Breaking
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If Volkswagen looks to break the record for electric vehicles, Dumas will have to pilot the I.D. R Pikes Peak from start to finish in less than 8:57.118

If Volkswagen looks to break the record for electric vehicles, Dumas will have to pilot the I.D. R Pikes Peak from start to finish in less than 8:57.118 – a record set by Rhys Millen in an eO PP100 back in 2016. It’s a tough nut to crack, no doubt, but so far things are looking pretty promising for Volkswagen this year. For the record, the I.D. R Pikes Peak pumps out 671 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of all-electric torque, not a staggering number when compared to the 1,595-horsepower eO PP100. It does feature a purpose-design aero package that delivers some outrageous downforce, even at the highest point of the course and it weight just 2,425 pounds (1000 kg.) When you consider the fact that Volkswagen hasn’t participated in 31 years, this could make for one hell of a return, don’t you think?

Further Reading

2018 Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2018 Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak.

2016 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb – Preview
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What You Need To Know About The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.

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Read more Volkswagen news.

Press release

Romain Dumas and the Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak made a clear statement of intent in qualifying ahead of the 2018 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in the US state of Colorado. The Frenchman, at the wheel of Volkswagen’s first fully-electric racing car, was the fastest of all the competitors, setting an eye-catching time of 3:16.083 minutes. The three-time Pikes Peak winner went 11.049 seconds quicker than second-placed Simone Faggioli in his Norma M20 SF PKP with its combustion engine. “That was a very good day for us,” said Dumas. “The I.D. R Pikes Peak is incredible. I have never experienced acceleration and power like that in a racing car. I am noticing how the car and I are becoming more and more of a unit with every kilometer,” said the Frenchman.

Sven Smeets, Volkswagen Motorsport Director, was also happy with the way qualifying panned out: “A big compliment to the entire team. We completed an important test yesterday, the findings from which have helped us to further optimize the set-up of the I.D. R Pikes Peak. The result is that the car was superbly prepared today, and the time speaks for itself. However, that was only qualifying. We are optimistic about the race, but must always bear in mind that we only have one single attempt.”

In qualifying for the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, each competitor is only running the first section of the 19.99-kilometre course – from the start to the 8.3-kilometre mark. The times are used to determine the starting order for the race. The competitor with the fastest qualifying time starts first. As it stands, this will be Romain Dumas in the I.D. R Pikes Peak.

Volkswagen’s pursuit of the record for electric vehicles, which currently stands at 8:57.118 minutes, begins on Sunday (24 June). First onto the route, from 08:00 local time (16:00 CEST), are the 24 registered motorcycles. They are followed by 62 cars in six different classes. Romain Dumas is scheduled to start in the I.D. R Pikes Peak at about 10:00 (18:00 CEST).

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