Peugeot returns to the Dakar Rally for the first time in 25 years with 2008-based challenger

Peugeot has revealed its new Dakar Rally challenger at the Beijing motor show. The 2008 DKR marks Peugeot's return to the Dakar Rally for the first time in 25 years.

The car will be fielded in the event next year by Peugeot along with its partners, Total and Red Bull. While still looking similar to the 2008 crossover, signicant motorsport additions give the 2008 DKR a more muscular profile. Peugeot has done away with the rear doors of the crossover, giving the competing car a more coupe-like appearance with shorter overhangs.

Peugeot engineers were given a specific brief on the dimensions of the car, interior fittings, wheel sizes and suspension upgrades. Rather than opting for a 4x4 configuration, Peugeot says it has instead chosen to make the 2008 DKR two-wheel drive only in order to benefit from its ability to 'roll' over sandy terrain.

Piloting the new car will be 2010 Dakar winner Carlos Sainz, alongside new competitor Cyril Despres. Peugeot won the Dakar Rally for four consecutive years between 1987 and 1990, first with the 205 T16 Grand Raid and later with the 405 T16 Grand Raid.

The 2015 Dakar Rally gets under way next January, with the race starting in Argentina.

Read more Beijing motor show news.

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Peugeot 2008

Can the Peugeot 2008 crossover make more of a mark than the estate it replaces?

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21 April 2014
Mini (or MINI as it likes to be called) has had a bit of a hegemony the last few years and it would be nice to see a manufacturer give them a proper challenge. Being a French manufacturer will give them a bit of an edge in marketing as well (and perhaps rules interpretation as the French sometimes are want to do). In addition to weight I believe that the four-wheel-drive competitors are restricted in the size/horsepower of their engines versus the two-wheel drive cars which is why the majority opt for not going 4x4. Also, please stop referring to Cyril Despres as a new competitor. This will be his first drive in a car but he has won the Dakar on a motorcycle five times and is well-known to anyone with even a cursory knowledge of the event. I hope he transitions well like his bike-to-car rival Stephane Peterhansel.

25 April 2014
That car is awesome! Love the tires!

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