We all are already well acquainted with the success of Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak at the famous Americam mountain climb. But less well is known about the events which preceded the 7:57.148 minutes, which Romain Dumas took to finish the 19.99 mountain kilometers.
After the I.D. R Pikes Peak project got a green light in September 2017 it was followed by six months of numerous tests over a distance of 4,000 kilometers. First the car started to get its shape on the computers in the development department and after it technicians, in order to gain some time, converted a Golf GTI TCR to use a twin-engine electric drive system with the power of around 400 KW. They used it for 15 days at the Ehra-Lessien test site with Dumas and Volkswagen development driver Dieter Depping behind the steering wheel. As they say at Volkswagen, the electric drive system was a new area of activity for Volkswagen Motorsport at that time and they had to understand how the individual components work together in a race car and how to find the ideal configuration.
On 22 April 2018 the I.D. R Pikes Peak finally made its first public appearance at the track outside Ales, France, where engineers also tried out different scenarios for suspension and aerodynamics setup. Ales was also important as Duimas' home circuit and the place where he already prepared for his previous victories at Pikes Peak. Later more tests took part in Ehra-Lessien and in mid May the Volkswagen Motorsport team made Pikes Peak International Raceway oval track its home for some time with Dumas and Depping changing their places behind steering wheel of the car.
In late May, just four weeks into the race,the team was finally able to go to the Pikes Peak road, but just for three days in the early morning hours, before the road opened for the public traffic. And so it happened that because of the severe weather conditions Dumas was not able to test the car on the upper section of the road and so he had to rely on his past experience with the track and work in a simulator.