It smashed five years old all-time record by a full 16 seconds and became the first car to set sub-8 minutes time.
Yesterday, Colorado state hosted 96th edition of famous international hill climb race on Pikes Peak. First edition took place more than 100 years, back in 1912, however we can safely say, this year's race is going down in history and for all the right reasons. It was the first time, that electric-driven racecar won the race. It also broke the all-time record and did it by a fair margin, all thanks to Volkswagen and their I.D. R Pikes Peak race car.
It has been 250 days ago, when Volkswagen announced, that they are going to 'race to the clouds' in 2018 and are going to do it with electric car, first ever modern electric car from the company to serve its purpose. And it passed the test with flying colors. With absolute record of the track from 2013 with 8 minutes and 13 seconds being held by Peugeot 208 T16, that was driven by Sebastien Loeb, while the best time among electric cars 8:57:118 from 2016, no one could imagine, electric cars would beat petrol-driven cars any time soon.
How wrong they were. I.D. R Pikes Peak with 500 kilowatts of power and French driver Romain Dumas behind the wheel did it. With a time of 7:57:148 it not only beat Rhys Millen's said time by a full minute, it also beat Loeb's record from 2013 by 16 seconds and became the first ever racecar to finish the 19.99 kilometers long race with 156 corners under eight minutes.
"Awesome! We exceeded even our own high expectations with that result. Since this week's tests, we have known that it was possible to break the all-time record. For it to come off, everything had to come together perfectly – from the technology to the driver. And the weather had to play ball too. That everything ran so smoothly is an incredible feeling, and the new record on Pikes Peak is the icing on the cake. I still cannot believe that Volkswagen and my name are behind this incredible time. The I.D. R Pikes Peak is the most impressive car I have ever driven in competition. The electric drivetrain means that many things are different and I learned a lot during the project. The team did an indescribably meticulous, yet at the same time relaxed, job. Not only did we get the desired result, but the team spirit was also spot on. I am incredibly proud to have been a part of it," said excited Frenchman after the race.