The current title holder in the Dakar Rally is going to try and defend the win this year with an all new challenger – the Peugeot 3008 DKR – which arrives to replace the predecessor, the very successful 2008 DKR.
The new racer has been developed starting from the second generation Peugeot 3008 SUV, which is set to receive its worldwide public premiere during the Paris Motor Show. The 3008 DKR is expected to make its introduction alongside Spanish rally legend Carlos Sainz in Morocco next month and comes with a wide array of upgrades compared to its predecessor, which was manned by Stephane Peterhansel for the win in the classic Dakar event this January. “The 3008 symbolises the next step,” said head of Peugeot Sport, Bruno Famin. “Our goal with this car was to take the weaker points of the existing car and make them stronger, while capitalising on all the existing strengths to improve them still further. There are also some new regulations, which we obviously needed to comply with.”
Since we’re dealing with an all new car, there are numerous upgrades to the reliability, driveability, suspension and air conditioning, alongside the new 38mm turbo restrictors on its biturbo V6 diesel engine, smaller than last year, as stipulated by the regulations. The automaker says they optimized the torque delivery at lower revs, in a bid to compensate for the power loss and the 3008 DKR is set to remain a front wheel drive machine, just like the predecessor. Last year the 2008 DKR brought the first victory in 15 years for a two-wheel drive vehicle.