September 29, 2023

Wade Through Films

The Ultimate Driving Machines

Audi tests its plug-in hybrid RS Q E-Tron Dakar rally car

Audi ready its staff, its motorists and its autos for the 2022 version of the Dakar Rally by carrying out a series of checks in the Moroccan desert. Run by a gasoline-electrical powertrain, the RS Q E-Tron sprinted, braked tricky, drifted and expended a large amount of time in the air.

Dakar legends Stéphane Peterhansel and Carlos Sainz and lengthy-time touring automobile racer Mattias Ekström took turns putting an RS Q E-Tron prototype through its paces in Morocco. Sand storms and one hundred-furthermore-degree temperatures tortured the powertrain it truly is the desert, immediately after all. Not every thing went smoothly, which is inevitable, but the crew would rather discover complications while screening than while racing.

“Some new complications arose in the higher temperatures, which frequently brought on interruptions to the screening and wanted to be solved prior to the subsequent test,” defined Sven Quandt, the crew principal of Q Motorsport. All informed, the crew expended two months south of the Mediterranean.

It seems like much of the screening hovered all over the powertrain, which consists of a TFSI motor sourced from Audi’s now-shuttered DTM touring automobile crew and set up to demand a 50-kilowatt-hour battery pack on-the-go. It operates in between 4,five hundred and six,000 rpm. Electricity reaches the 4 wheels by means of a pair of electrical motors borrowed from Audi’s Formula E autos, while a 3rd motor will help demand the battery. It is a rather sophisticated method some of the components are off-the-shelf parts, but the battery was designed specially for the RS Q E-Tron.

An additional place that was fantastic-tuned for the duration of the checks is ergonomics. Race autos are built for effectiveness, not consolation, but quirks like an odd seating position, very poor visibility, and a cramped cabin can lead to the motorists and the copilot to eliminate valuable seconds. Audi for that reason manufactured small but major modifications to the cockpit to carve out more room for the crew and permit for much better interaction.

“The insights we attained in Morocco is invaluable, but they also exhibit us that we nonetheless have a large amount to do prior to the Dakar Rally, and there is not much time still left,” concluded Andreas Roos, the head of manufacturing unit motorsport assignments at Audi Sport. He’s appropriate: the race commences in January 2022.

Audi Sport will go on screening the RS Q E-Tron in a range of disorders and spots in the coming months. In the meantime, personnel at its facility in Germany have started setting up one particular of the two autos that will contend in the race. It wears chassis range 104. Lovers will be equipped to see the duo in motion for the duration of the 2022 Dakar Rally, which commences in commences on January two in Ha’il, Saudi Arabia, and finishes in Jeddah twelve days later on. In the dunes, the RS Q E-Tron will will need to fend off opposition from a varied listing of rivals such as the BRX Hunter.

Curiously, some of the lessons acquired while screening the Dakar racer in Morocco and elsewhere will trickle down to output autos in the coming several years. Audi is notably getting important information about controlling a higher-voltage battery pack’s temperature in excessive disorders.

Connected Online video: