The most successful driver in the history of the World Rally Championship is to make his debut at the gruelling Dakar cross-country event in January
Matt Burt
29 September 2015

Sébastien Loeb will tackle the gruelling Dakar Rally for the first time in a Peugeot 2008 DKR in January 2016.

The Frenchman, a nine-time winner of the World Rally Championship, will be navigated by Daniel Elena, with whom he claimed all of his WRC successes.

Loeb and Elena will join a strong Team Peugeot Total line-up that also includes Carlos Sainz, Stéphane Peterhansel and Cyril Despres.

This year’s Dakar crosses Argentina and Bolivia over 13 days. Loeb had tested the 2008 DKR in Morocco in June, and he will return to the country to compete in the next round of the World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies, the Rallye du Maroc, on 3-9 October.

In Morocco, Sainz will drive the latest Peugeot 2008 DKR16 whereas Loeb will drive a 2015-specification car.

Under the skin of the Peugeot 2008 DKR 

Loeb, who has been competing with Citroen in the World Touring Car Championship this season, said: “The Dakar is completely different from the racing I’m doing at the moment. It will be very long, more than two weeks, and you need to have the endurance to look after the driver and the car. It’s another approach to racing but I’ll discover that in January.”

“When I tried the Peugeot 2008 DKR out in June, it was immediately very impressive for me – and of course it has changed a lot since then.

“What struck me most of all is how the Dakar car was a completely new experience: in the WRC I have been used to going round obstacles but with this car you can just drive straight over them, and it takes some time to have the confidence to believe it. “I’ve also been used to having very detailed pace notes: in Cross Country, you have to find the road for yourself and improvise your route.

"And this is actually the first time I have driven any type of diesel car in competition too. So there is a lot for me to learn, but I am eager to find out more.”

Now 41, Loeb is arguably the greatest all-rounder in the modern sport, having competed with success in rallying, touring cars, sportscars and specialised events such as the Pikes Peak hill climb.

Get the latest car news, reviews and galleries from Autocar direct to your inbox every week. Enter your email address below:

Our Verdict

Peugeot 2008

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

Join the debate


29 September 2015
The dream team comes back.

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Ford Mustang
    First Drive
    24 March 2018
    Sixth-generation Mustang gets a leaner face, revised suspension, improved safety equipment and a more power V8. We see how it fares on southern French roads
  • First Drive
    23 March 2018
    Fully-loaded, big-hitting diesel CLS shows the potential perils of ticking too many options boxes on your order form. A good car with a bad suspension combination.
  • BMW M5
    First Drive
    22 March 2018
    Super saloon deploys four-wheel drive to improve every facet of its driving experience. Faster and more capable than any, and more exciting than most, of its celebrated predecessors
  • Range Rover Sport SVR
    First Drive
    22 March 2018
    More power and an intoxicating soundtrack have breathed new life into our love affair with the biggest, baddest Range Rover Sport variant
  • First Drive
    21 March 2018
    The new Vantage has been developed as a Porsche 911 beater, and our first taste on UK roads suggests it can live up to that bold claim