Coming off the back of a successful Dakar and Silk Way Rally campaign with the Peugeot 2008 DKR this year, Team Peugeot Total and Red Bull have revealed the new Peugeot 3008 DKR.
This is the all-new successor to the famous machine with which Stéphane Peterhansel claimed his resounding 12th victory on the Dakar back in January, and Cyril Despres clinched his first win on four wheels on the Silk Way Rally in July.
The all-new Dakar challenger is based on an entirely new model of Peugeot SUV, to be revealed at the Paris Motor Show next month, following eight months of intensive work in Velizy, France, since the Dakar finish ramp in Rosario. The new 3008 SUV forms the inspiration for the latest evolution, following the company’s return to Dakar after 25 years in 2015.
The new Peugeot 3008 DKR also remains loyal to Peugeot’s two-wheel drive philosophy, with the first Dakar win for a two-wheel drive car in 15 years nine months ago proving that you don’t necessarily need four wheel drive to conquer the toughest landscapes in the world.
Sébastien Criquet is Peugeot’s senior exterior designer, responsible for the aggressive lines of the both the new Peugeot 3008 DKR and the corresponding road car. The Dakar car’s dimensions and features are governed by technical rules laid down by the sport’s governing body, but its inspiration is still very clear through a number of unique design cues.
“While the previous car was durable enough to win the Dakar this year and claim nine stages (including seven one-twos), in any competition machine there is always room to improve on reliability. Peugeot Sport’s engineers went through every aspect of the car in fine detail in order to refine the package still further, focussing both on mechanical strength and also complex electronic processes, such as engine management. The Dakar is the toughest race in the world, taking in 10, 000 kilometres at high speeds and altitudes, which makes it the ultimate test of reliability for any machine. Peugeot Sport has now ensured that the car’s 3.0-litre V6 twin-turbo-diesel engine is even more driveable for next year’s Dakar, delivering greater torque at lower revs. Adding to the challenge for the engineers is the fact that the latest Dakar regulations have imposed a smaller restrictor on the engine (38mm as opposed to 39mm last year) with a net loss of around 20 horsepower. However, this power is now accessible from further down the rev range, meaning that the car is easier to drive and potentially even faster.
Before the Dakar itself, Carlos Sainz will test the Peugeot 3008 DKR in race mode against other Dakar competitors and Cyril Despres in the 2008 DKR, during Morocco’s Rally in October (October 3 to 7).