VW ID.R snatches Goodwood hillclimb record
At this point in time, Volkswagen seem to be invincible when it comes to records. Wherever they aim their pure electric ID.R race car, it steals yet another killer lap time! This time, VW shipped their ID.R down to the South of England, to the infamous Goodwood Festival of Speed straight off the back of their Nürburgring record which had the whole world in awe. Why the Goodwood Festival of Speed you may ask? Well, only last year the Germans took the original variant of the VW ID.R up the hillclimb and claimed the record for the fastest EV. But, that isn’t good enough, VW want to show that EVs are the way forward in both efficiency and performance.
So, which car held the past record? Quite possibly one of the most impressive engineering marvels of modern motorsport history, a Mclaren MP4/13 Formula 1 car driven by the man himself, Nick Heidfeld in 1999. This record was held for 20 years, which is pretty groundbreaking considering how far technology in motorsport has come, and just how many talented drivers have blitzed the hill in a brave attempt to claim the record.
However, as we all know, nothing is too much for Romain Dumas, as long as he’s at the helm of a race car. And, the VW ID.R definitely was THE car to use. A flurry of adjustments had been made to the all electric race car to put it in it’s best stead to take the record. The “sprint” version of the VW ID.R had many systematic modifications including a smaller battery which gives the new sprint version of the ID.R a weight saving of more than 1,000 kilograms, with the driver on board, claims François-Xavier Demaison, Technical Director at Volkswagen Motorsport. Moreover, the Drag Reduction System which was engaged for the Nürburgring record was disabled, as downforce is very much needed for the tight corners around the Goodwood hillclimb.
Somethings don’t change, however, Bridgestone still hold the tyre provider record for the hillclimb, as they provided the VW Motorsport team with a special slick compound alternative of the Potenza tyre, the Mclaren MP4/13 of the ’99 record used Bridgestone rubber too, showing the brand’s potential!
The VW ID.R claimed the record on the Saturday 6th July, with a truly astounding time of 39.90 seconds, a whole 1.7 seconds faster than the 20 year old record. However, the record attempt on Sunday (during the “Sunday Shootout”) wasn’t so successful as it had rained, in typical British fashion throughout the morning, so the car’s physical grip was impacted severely, hence why the time achieved was 42.32 seconds. This has raised the question of whether or not the record was officially the fastest, of which the Goodwood Press team answered with “The ID.R broke the record – unofficially. The 39.90s run was not in the Sunday Shootout and so, just as a Qualifying lap is usually faster than the Fastest Lap in a race, it doesn’t count”. So, the record isn’t “official” so to say, but in everyone’s head, we all know that the VW ID.R is the true king of the hill!
In many ways, the Volkswagen Motorsport team, Romain Dumas and their creation, the ID.R, is a visionary project! Proving to the masses that electric cars are more than a tool to save fuel money and the environment, but instead that the technology has many advantages over combustion engines! The achievements that this car has claimed has secured a new form of admirer over typical electric cars, with even the most anorak motorsport enthusiasts having to pick their jaws up off the floor!