The car that cares

Dakar greats Peterhansel and Sainz will drive electric Audi in next rally

Carlos Sainz, still left, Stephane Peterhansel and Cyril Despres sign autographs at the 2019 Dakar Rally. (Reuters)


“Mr Dakar” Stephane Peterhansel and triple champion Carlos Sainz have joined Audi’s bid to get the 2022 version of the stamina rally with an electrical prototype, the Volkswagen-owned maker said on Monday.

Frenchman Peterhansel, 55, has won the Dakar a document fourteen moments such as this yr. Spaniard Sainz, fifty nine, triumphed in 2020 with each motorists lately competing for the X-Raid Mini JCW crew.

They will be joined by forty two-yr-aged Swede Mattias Ekstroem, a two-time winner of the Germany Touring Car or truck (DTM) championship and planet rallycross champion, in the Jan two-fourteen occasion in Saudi Arabia.

Audi hope to be the first maker to acquire all round victory with an electrified powertrain.

“The Dakar is 1 of the final adventures in this planet. And it is on the verge of a radical modify: the future is electrical,” said Peterhansel.

“The Dakar is an serious check for this technology. We want to be the first crew to get the Dakar Rally with an electrical powertrain.”

Sainz is currently competing in electrical racing with his personal crew in the Extreme E off-highway SUV series that began this yr.

“Even at fifty nine, I’m continue to hungry, normally I would not have taken on this new challenge,” he said.

The prototype cars will use an electrical drivetrain provided by a substantial-voltage battery which can be charged by way of a combustion engine.

The once-a-year rally began in 1978 as a race from Paris to the Senegalese capital, Dakar, but moved from Africa for security causes in 2009.

Just one of motorsport’s most hazardous and grueling gatherings, the rally is now held fully in Saudi Arabia right after a stint in South The usa.