Volkswagen has launched its latest race-spec Touareg to tackle the Dakar Rally: the Race Touareg 3.
The winner of the 2009 and 2010 events has been made faster and more efficient by VW.
Wind tunnel testing has led to improvements to the cooling systems around the roof, while the car also adopts some of the styling changes of the new Touareg road car, including new LED front headlights and a new front grille. A new window line, rear clamshell and wheels also feature.
The 2.5 TDI engine has also been improved to boost fuel economy, while retaining outputs of 296bhp and 442lb ft. Other changes to the engine allow it perform better at altitude; the Dakar Rally climbs to heights of more than 15,000ft. Improvements have also been made to the car’s three limited-slip differentials and five-speed sequential gearbox.
The VW Race Touareg 3 can get from 0-62mph in 6.1sec and reach a top speed of 117mph “in nearly all conditions”.
The car will compete in the Dakar Rally 2011 and has already undergone more than 10,000km of shakedown tests ahead of its competitive debut.