Peugeot unveils new 2008 DKR16 ahead 2016 Dakar Rally campaign.[Not a valid template]
Peugeot’s highly anticipated return to this year’s Dakar Rally didn’t go well. Granted, working to a brand new team setup and enormously tough competition from MINI and Toyota, a ‘solid result’ was realistically all the team could have hoped for. Even so, given support from Red Bull and a combined 18 former Dakar victories for team drivers Stéphane Peterhansel, Carlos Sainz and Cyril Despres, a best finish of 12th overall and performance almost 1.5s off MINI’s lead pace must have proven a bitter pill to swallow.
Business has been picking up throughout 2015 though. Recently Team Peugeot Total took its first endurance rally victory on the 5000+km China Silk Road Rally, success cemented by a 1-2 result for Peterhansel and Despres. And with an updated version of the 2008 DKR having now been revealed, Peugeot’s drive for its fifth Dakar victory is higher than ever.
Longer, wider and lower than its predecessor, the new 2008 DKR16 offers a more aggressive stance thanks to reduced front and rear overhangs for improved ground clearance, heavily revised bonnet and roof-mounted air-intake for improved downforce, and a new air scoop for better airflow. Peugeot has also opted to continue with its two-wheel drive configuration. Beneath the carbon body, redesigned – and lighter – suspension has been introduced to both deal more effectively with changeable terrain and for improved weight distribution, magnesium one-piece wheels, and lighter, grippier Michelin tyres. The 3.0-litre V6 twin-turbo diesel engine also offers more power, although details have yet to be revealed.
The new Peugeot 2008 DKR16 is set to make its competitive debut later this year before next year’s January Dakar.