Like so many of its rivals, Volkswagen is in the midst of ramping up its EV game. What may very well set it apart is the prototype with which it aims to stake its claim.
To get there, the German automaker has devised a racing prototype that it claims is quicker off the line than an F1 car. 2.25 seconds is all it takes to hit 62 miles per hour (100 km/h) from a standstill.
That mind-bending performance comes courtesy of an electric powertrain capable of producing 680 horsepower (500 kW) and 881 lb-ft (650 Nm) of torque. That’d be enough to motivate most road-going supercars, but the ID R weighs much less: under 1,100 kilograms (2,425 lbs), according to the manufacturer.
The Lamborghini Huracan Performante, by comparison, weighs nearly a thousand pounds more, packs 40 fewer horses, and over 200 fewer lb-ft of torque. And that street-legal supercar managed a sub-7-minute lap time at the Nürburgring Nordschleife.
Showcasing VW’s Electric Technology
“Volkswagen’s goal is to reach the pinnacle of electromobility with the I.D. family. As such, Volkswagen’s involvement on Pikes Peak not only sets the trend for our future in motorsport, but is also of great symbolic significance in the truest sense,” said Volkswagen R&D chief Dr. Frank Welsch. “Customers have always benefitted from the findings made in motorsport, and we expect to take these findings and use them as a valuable impetus for the development of future I.D. models. The hill climb on Pikes Peak will definitely be a real acid test for the electric drive.”
The task of driving the lightweight, high-powered machine falls to one Romain Dumas. The French driver not only won the 24 Hours of Le Mans for sister-company Porsche, but has claimed three victories at Pikes Peak.
“As with the Volkswagen brand’s production vehicles, fully-electric racing cars will also play an increasingly important role for us in the future,” said VW Motorsport director Sven Smeets. “The cooperation within the group really helped us, particularly given the tight schedule. For example, we received support from the Volkswagen battery plant in Braunschweig and worked together with the technical development department in Wolfsburg.”