The headlines and the record time speak volumes about the I.D. R’s recent performance at Pikes Peak, but it’s a bit challenging to fathom just how quickly the car can manage such speeds on this unforgiving, sinuous road. With the aid of a helicopter and a fantastic camera rig, we get a better sense of the slot-car acceleration and outrageous cornering grip the I.D. R possesses, the commitment of its driver, and the sheer cliffs he had to run alongside to snag the record lap.
Last month, the 671 hp, fully-electric I.D. R Pikes Peak, as driven by Romain Dumas, outran cars powered by conventional drivetrain technology and, with a time of 7:57.148 minutes, not only smashed the previous electric car record, but bested the all-time record by a full 16 seconds.
That much thrust is not record-setting in itself, as there have been far more powerful cars that have carved up the winding, 12.4-mile course. However, the combination of immediate torque from the two electric motors — one powering each axle — as well as the four-wheel drive system, amount to stellar acceleration out of the course’s numerous hairpins. Factor in a slinky body weighing just 2,45o pounds and an aerodynamic package more outlandish than that of an LMP1 car, the cornering speeds are immense.
As remarkable as the equipment might’ve been, it was the Le Mans ace’s commitment which made this lap possible. Seeing Dumas flirt with the cliff’s edge simply needs to be seen! Thanks to the staggering footage Volkswagen have gifted us with, we get a better sense of how skilled (and possibly nutty) some top-tier drivers truly are.