The Audi plus RS Q e-tron has passed the baptism of fire of the Dakar. All three examples of the car, making their debut in the most difficult rally raid in the world, reached the finish line after having covered a total of over 24,000 kilometers in the Saudi desert. Almost three times the distance accumulated in development. The crew made up of Mattias Ekström and Emil Bergkvist finished in the top ten (9th overall), making it the best of the Audi teams.
By deploying an avant-garde electric prototype with range extender, the House of the four rings has established itself as a pioneer of the energy revolution in rally raids.
“The innovative technical concept introduced in rally raids by the Audi RS Q e-tron, unique in the motorsport landscape, has proven to live up to the pioneering role entrusted to it by the Brand”, says Oliver Hoffmann, member of the Board for Technical Development by Audi AG. “The full electric drivetrain, the high voltage battery and the range extender system shone in terms of efficiency and performance.”
The Audi RS Q e-tron project was completed in about 12 months, and the three electric prototypes with range extenders inaugurated the T1 Ultimate category for low-emission vehicles. Stéphane Peterhansel, the most victorious driver ever in the Dakar with a palmarès of 14 wins, summed up his experience behind the wheel of the avant-garde prototype of the four rings: “I drove many cars with different technical configurations, but in the Audi RS dunes. The Q e-tron is simply sensational. The electric quattro all-wheel drive and the exceptional readiness to deliver torque are ideal for my driving style. “
The Frenchman, sailed by fellow countryman Edouard Boulanger, won the tenth stage of the Dakar, but in the initial stages he was forced to give up his ambitions of the classification due to the unfortunate impact with a stone that irreparably damaged the left rear suspension. From now on, “Mister Dakar” put himself at the service of the team, supporting the team when needed.
The three examples of Audi RS Q e-tron at the start, registered under the official Audi Sport aegis, were managed by the Q Motorsport GmbH team. “Audi has achieved 4 wins and 10 stage podiums. A result that surpasses all expectations for a debut car,” said Julius Seebach, CEO of Audi Sport GmbH and Head of the Brand’s international sporting activities. “Sainz’s victory already on the third day wrote a new chapter in the history of the Dakar.
Audi is the first manufacturer in the world to conquer a stage with an electric prototype with range extender. Added to this is an excellent team performance. The absolute victory of the next Dakar – he concluded – is our new goal “.
Source From: Ansa