Peugeot has emerged as the dominant force to be reckoned with in the Dakar Rally as the French team not only took overall victory in the famously grueling event, but locked out the final podium with a 1-2-3 finish.
Despite a hard-fought campaign by nine-time World Rally Champion Sebastien Loeb, it was ultimately his teammate Stephane “Mr. Dakar” Peterhansel who took top honors for the second year in a row.
That makes thirteen Dakar wins for Peterhansel, who has won the event seven times in the cars category and six more on bikes to make him the most victorious driver in the history of the landmark rally.
After winning the final stage, Loeb emerged second in the cars category – 5 minutes and 13 seconds behind his teammate – with Cyril Despres finishing third (33 minutes off the lead).
Toyota‘s Nani Roma and Giniel de Villiers finished fourth and fifth, respectively, ahead of X-Raid/Mini‘s Orlando Terranova. The latter team had previously won the Dakar Rally four times running between 2012 and 2015, following Volkswagen’s dominance with the Touareg three years in a row (2009-11) and the seven consecutive wins for the Mitsubishi Pajero before that.
This year’s event also saw Sam Sunderland win the motorcycles category in the KTM 450 Rally (which wins the class year after year). The Russian team of Eduard Nikolaev, Evgeny Yakovlev, and Vladimir Rybakov won the trucks class in their Kamaz 4326, while fellow countryman Sergy Karyakin won the quads category in his Yamaha Raptor 700, and the Brazilian pair of Leandro Torres and Lourival Roldan took the new UTV class in the Polaris RZR 1000 XP.