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Romain Dumas and the Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak Racer Shatter the Pikes Peak Time Attack Record

Romain Dumas and the Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak Racer Shatter the Pikes Peak Time Attack Record

There’s a new king of Pikes Peak!

Volkswagen’s all-electric I.D. R hummed its way into Pikes Peak lore after smashing the International Hillclimb’s record with a time of 7:57.148, becoming the first-ever race car to complete the 12.42-mile course in under eight minutes. The record-setting run happened over the weekend, etching the car and its driver, Romain Dumas, into the Pike Peak International Hillclimb record books.

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The Volkswagen I. D. R Pikes Peak Qualifies First, Setting Expectations for Winning and Record Breaking

The Volkswagen I. D. R Pikes Peak Qualifies First, Setting Expectations for Winning and Record Breaking

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.

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VW Gears Up For Pikes Peak With I.D. R All-Electric Racer: Video

VW Gears Up For Pikes Peak With I.D. R All-Electric Racer: Video

Lots of electrons, lots of wing

The 2018 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is rapidly approaching, and Volkswagen will be there to challenge the standing course record with this - the I.D. R, an all-electric racer purpose-built for the job. The event is set to take place at the end of the month, but VW is already onsite in Colorado, prepping for the big day with a few test runs in an effort to sort out any lingering issues with the new racing machine. Chronicling the latest efforts is this 2-minute, 46-second teaser vid, which shows the I.D. R in action alongside an interview with its driver, Romain Dumas.

All told, the I.D. R certainly has the right specs for something like this. In addition to simply ludicrous aero, this carbon monster is powered by a dual-motor powertrain making 671 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque, enough to propel it to 60 mph in just 2.25 seconds.

That’s quick, but Mr. Dumas has the skills to make it work, boasting a resume that includes wins at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, 24 Hours of Nurburgring, and 12 Hours of Sebring, not to mention outright victories at Pikes Peak in 2014, 2016, and 2017.

That said, even the best driver and car in the world won’t make this a cake walk. The Pikes Peak course is highly technical and extremely dangerous, composed of 156 turns spread over 12.42 miles, rising nearly 5,000 feet. The finish line towers above the surrounding landscape at 14,110 feet above sea level, which has a profound effect on cooling and aerodynamics, not to mention the driver’s mental state.

Will VW pull it off? Tune in June 24th to find out.

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Volkswagen Tunes Aero Package for Run at Pikes Peak

Volkswagen Tunes Aero Package for Run at Pikes Peak

A cartoonishly oversized rear wing fixes many problems

The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is an absolute monster of a challenge. Composed of 156 turns laid across 12.4 miles of narrow two-lane switchbacks, The Race to the Clouds lives up to its name by climbing some 4,720 feet, with the peak touching the sky at over 14,000 feet above sea level. As such, aero set-up is particularly tricky to work out, as the extreme high altitude conditions make wings and cooling substantially less effective, even when compared between the start and finish lines. Volkswagen is tackling the problem by testing and tuning in the wind tunnel is it preps for a run at America’s Mountain with the new I.D. R all-electric racer.

Continue reading for the full story.

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Volkswagen's I.D. R Pikes Peak Racer is Not For the Weak of Heart

Volkswagen’s I.D. R Pikes Peak Racer is Not For the Weak of Heart

VW claims it accelerates quicker than a Formula E and Formula One race car

The Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak racer is no joke. The German automaker finally unveiled its all-electric time attack racer and, judging by the technical specifications; it looks like it’s ready to conquer the 2018 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. The I.D. R Pikes Peak has a serious amount of power at its disposal. More importantly, all that power translates to performance abilities that make it quicker than a Formula E race car and a Formula One racer.

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Volkswagen Teases Electric Race Car For 2018 Pikes Peak

Volkswagen Teases Electric Race Car For 2018 Pikes Peak

The German brand returns to the mountain after 30 years

A few years ago Volkswagen revealed that it wants to transform itself into one of the leading producers of electric vehicles. This statement was further emphasized after the "Dieselgate" emissions scandal. Now, the German firm is making another big step toward electrification by including its racing division into these plans. Specifically, Volkswagen Motorsport is working with the company’s Technical Development center in Wolfsburg on an all-electric prototype car for next year’s Pikes Peak International Hill Climb race.

An event that has become a popular venue for carmakers and privateers experimenting with electric drivetrains, the Pikes Peak Hill Climb will see Volkswagen debut it’s most daring race car yet. And the German firm doesn’t want to join the event just for kicks; it’s also planning to set a new record for electric cars on the 12.4-mile-long course. "The Pikes Peak hill climb is one of the world’s most renowned car races. It poses an enormous challenge and is therefore perfectly suited to proving the capabilities of upcoming technologies," explained Dr. Frank Welsch, Member of the Board responsible for Development. Although data is still under wraps, Volkswagen released a teaser photo of the car. But more on that below.

Continue reading for the full story.

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Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross Unveils New Livery, Battle Damage To Follow

Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross Unveils New Livery, Battle Damage To Follow

Yes, this bug can most definitely fly

If you like watching 600-horsepower rally cars going wheel to wheel on loose-surface racetracks with huge jumps and lots of contact, then odds are you’re excited for the upcoming 2017 season of the Red Bull Global Rallycross championship. Carrying the momentum after a dominant performance in 2016 is the Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross team, which just revealed a duo of race-ready Beetles decked out in fresh racing liveries at the Chicago Auto Show. Once again taking the helm will be two-time title winner Tanner Foust, as well as defending champ Scott Speed.

“We’ve been working really hard to improve our cars over the off-season,” said Speed, “and I can’t wait to get to racing so we can defend our title again.” Speed managed to secure an impressive back-to-back championship win last year, and will once again pilot the No. 41 Beetle. No. 41 is covered in green, red, and white, and features prominent branding from sponsors Oberto All Natural Beef Jerky and Circle K, both of which appeared on the car previously, but now enjoy a more permanent spot on the Beetle’s body panels.

Meanwhile, former Top Gear USA co-host and Scott’s current teammate Tanner Foust will once again pilot the No. 34 Beetle, which is draped in long-time sponsor Rockstar Energy Drink’s black and yellow livery. Foust managed a

record

breaking 25 consecutive Heat wins last year, as well as a second-place championship finish. This will be his 12th consecutive year with backing from Rockstar.

“It feels like the 2016 season ended a long time ago,” Foust said, “so I’m really eager to get back behind the wheel of this ferocious machine. Last year we had a lot of great results, and I’m confident that with all our hard off-season effort we can be up at the front of the field again in 2017.”

The 2017 season of the Red Bull Global Rallycross championship will feature 12 events taking place at venues across the U.S. Look for the season opener on April 29th in Memphis, Tennessee.

Continue reading for the full story.

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Volkswagen To Leave World Rally Championship

Volkswagen To Leave World Rally Championship

Yep, it’s Dieselgate’s fault again

The motor racing world is still reeling from Audi’s decision to leave endurance racing at the conclusion of the 2016 season and now, it appears that the bad breaks aren’t over yet. Volkswagen has also announced plans to exit the World Rally Championship after the 2016 season.

The revelation is no less shocking than Audi’s departure from endurance racing, including Le Mans, because of Volkswagen’s outright dominance in the WRC ever since it entered the rally series in 2013. In fact, since it’s arrival, Volkswagen has yet to lose a driver’s or manufacturer’s title, having won both championships for four consecutive years.

But apparently, even outright dominance in the WRC is no match from the debilitating fallout of the diesel emissions scandal, which the German automaker admitted as being one of the primary reasons behind its exit from the WRC. The departure is even more upsetting when you consider that Volkswagen won’t get to line up in the same grid as Toyota, which announced its return to the world’s premier rally series in 2017.

The good news is that Volkswagen’s involvements in the WRC and rally racing altogether aren’t going to be shut down completely. The company still plans to develop new rally cars, including the new Polo rally race that’s being developed to R5 specifications. But instead of having an actual team like it has done during its short-lived, four-year dominance, the German automaker will develop these rally cars for customer teams. In addition, the company said that its involvement in the Global Rallycross program will remain intact with the possibility of the program even expanding past its current capacity.

So that’s the good news here. The bad news is that we won’t get to see Volkswagen compete in the WRC as its own team anymore, leaving behind the possibilities of what a Volkswagen-Toyota rally battle could have become.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

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2017 Volkswagen Polo R WRC

2017 Volkswagen Polo R WRC

The Germans are working on a more powerful, aerodynamic WRC weapon

Introduced for the 2013 racing season as Volkswagen’s first

WRC

spec factory car since the 1990 Golf Rally G60, the Polo R WRC went on to dominate the sport by winning three back-to-back World Rally Championships through 2015. Having dominated each and every season since it returned to WRC, Volkswagen is gunning for more success starting 2017 with a new

Polo

based racer.

Under development since summer 2015, when the FIA released the new regulations for the World Rally Car class, the 2017 Polo R WRC is previewed as a significant improvement over its predecessor. Just like any evolution out there, the new

rally

spec compact is set to be lighter, more powerful and more aerodynamic. In other words, Ford and Hyundai have plenty of things to worry about for 2017 if they don’t shape up over the next 12 months.

Details about the next-gen Polo R WRC are still very limited, and the actual car was only shown as a rendering, but Volkswagen provided just enough information for us to have a closer look at Wolfsburg’s upcoming rally weapon. An unveiling is planned toward the end of 2016 with the official debut to take place at the Rally Monte Carlo in January 2017. Stay tuned for updates!

Continue reading to learn more about the 2017 Volkswagen Polo R WRC.

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2016 Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR

2016 Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR

The Golf GTI TCR is ready for the 2016 racing season

Back in June of 2015, Volkswagen dropped news of the Volkswagen Golf TCR that was basically a 2013 Seat Leon Cup Racer with a Golf body. That car was a concept that was designed to see how the gold could stand up in racing events. Its final testing was completed by Liqui Moly Team Engstler, which led to a win at the Red Bull Ring in Austria in 2015. With that initial testing Volkswagen was able to add the finishing touches to its customer-focused race car, and now we’re graced with this – the 2016 Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR.

You’ll notice a striking resemblance to the Golf GTR concept that proved itself at the Red Bull Ring, but the finalized product is a little more refined and sports its own subtle little differences. It still boasts a rather powerful four-cylinder engine and still has the blood of the Seat Leon Cup Racer flowing through veins, but this car will surely find itself right at home at the track, just as the Golf TCR did last year, and the Seat Leon Cup Racer has for the past few.

This car is an exciting development, and if you’ve had a chance to drive the 2016 Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport or the lesser 2016 Volkswagen Golf GTI, you already know why. The road going variants of the Golf are responsive and handle quite well, which is why the Golf – at least in some form – deserves a place on the track. There’s just something about a hatchback racer that works, and this Golf GTI TCR is no exception. Keep reading to find out more about Volkswagen’s new race car.

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WRC 2015 Season Highlights: Video

WRC 2015 Season Highlights: Video

If you wanna talk about the World Rally Championship, you could sum up 2015 by saying Sebastien Ogier took home his third championship title, but you’d be skipping out on most of the excitement of an action-packed season. Alongside the Frenchman’s nearly flawless performance was drama of every sort, including the rise of young talent (Elfyn Evans), the brief return of a legend (Sebastien Loeb), and a truly epic three-way battle in Sweden. Of course, it’s difficult to fit all the thrills and spills of WRC 2015 into a single introductory paragraph, but if brevity is what you’re after, hit play for two and a half minutes of rally-style goodness.

You know the drill – spectacular natural scenery, sky-scraping high-speed jumps, expertly executed power slides, and jaw-dropping crashes. These are the things you can count on when it comes to professional rally racing, and WRC 2015 delivered as expected. Add some angles from the helicopter up top, and footage of AWD systems churning for traction down low, and you’ve got icing for that cake.

This is the kind of thing that gets me stoked for the upcoming season. WRC 2016 kicks off in Monte Carlo on January 22nd. Look for coverage right here on TopSpeed.

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2016 Volkswagen Golf TCR

2016 Volkswagen Golf TCR

On its best days, badge engineering is usually a cynical exercise in marketing and recycling of used chassis. On its worst day, it makes for brand-killers like the Cadillac Cimmaron and Catera. But every once in a great while, when the stars align just right and Venus is in the proper stage of ascension, re-badging a used chassis might just get you something beautiful and glorious. A car that feels like what it was always meant to be — a car like the VW Golf TCR.

While we here in the States eagerly await the new 2016 Volkswagen Golf R, Volkswagen has unveiled one pretty sweet re-badging job. The car you’re looking at is, in no uncertain terms, a 2013 Seat Leon Cup Racer with a new Golf body. No more, and certainly no less. Of course, it’s also still a Golf, because the Seat itself is a re-badged Golf. So maybe this is just a case of a car returning to its brand. Still, this is one sick little race-ready ride for those who just can’t wait to represent Wolfsburg on the race track.

Continue reading for the full story Volkswagen Golf TCR.

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