Last year Volkswagen debuted an innovative racecar called the VW ID.R. The car set the motorsport world alight when it won overall at the famous Pikes Peak Hillclimb and set a new record in the process. You can read that story by clicking here. Now the chaps from VW have their eyes on more lofty ambitions
Incidentally, ID.R was the precursor of VW’s ID family of all-electric series production models.
Close to home
The VW ID.R is aiming to set a new lap record for all-electric vehicles are the Nurburgring Nordschleife. In preparation for the run VW engineers have been developing the car in the wind tunnel and at racetracks in Le Castellet and Alès (both in France). VW’s main objective in testing was to establish the ideal set-up for the electric drivetrain ahead of the record attempt in the summer of 2019. Romain Dumas, the current Pikes Peak record-holder, will be at the wheel.
Power on tap
To set a new record the onboard electronics will have to manage the energy stored in the batteries so that Dumas can go on the attack for an entire lap of the 20,832 Nordschleife. The two electric motors in the ID.R provide 500 kW of power to drive all four wheels. The car uses advanced torque vectoring to eliminate as much understeer as possible. The VW ID.R has no transmission and therefore no clutch.
Dumas will be aiming to beat the current fastest time of 6 min 45,90 sec. The current record is held by Chinese start-up brand Nio, with its EP9 hypercar. While they haven’t said it aloud, we are pretty sure that VW will be aiming for the outright record (5 min 19,55 sec) as well, currently held by sister brand Porsche. You can see that lap at the bottom of this post.
Power isn’t the only consideration over the lap, as downforce is needed in the corners and low drag on the long straights. Revisions on the VW ID.R are an adapted ﬂoor and a new spoiler at the front of the vehicle. A newly designed rear wing will be much lower than the variant used at Pikes Peak.
To further reduce the drag, the rear wing will deploy a Drag Reduction System (DRS). DRS allows for opening an element of the rear wing to preserve the energy reserves. DRS effect will be signiﬁcant on the 3 km Döttinger Höhe straight at the end of the lap.
In his own words
“The ID.R is the most high-performance race car ever developed by Volkswagen Motorsport”, says François-Xavier Demaison, Volkswagen Motorsport technical director. “The 2019 evolution of the racecar has taken every aspect of the technology to the next level. This is also true of the electric drivetrain, which has become even more efficient ahead of the e-lap record attempt on the Nordschleife. We have used computer simulations to develop tailored energy management. The most recent tests in Le Castellet and Alès focused on this software, alongside the new aerodynamics of the ID. R. Next up is the first test session on the Nordschleife.”