World Rally Champion, Sébastien Loeb adds another accolade to his roll of honour with an astonishing win at Pikes Peak
Steve Cropley Autocar
30 June 2013

In a display of driving supremacy that will surely have implications for the way America's second oldest motorsport event is run in future, nine times WRC champion Sébastien Loeb yesterday slashed a staggering 92 seconds - or nearly six per cent - off the time for cars in the Unlimited class at the Pikes Peak Hill Climb, near Colorado Springs. 

Driving a specially built four-wheel-drive Peugeot 208 T16 on the 25th anniversary of Ari Vartanen's fondly remembered victory there in a 405 T16, Loeb recorded a time of 8min 13.878sec for the 12.4-mile course which rises 5000 feet, has 156 corners and at times has sheer drops of 2000ft beside the road. Hillclimbs have been held in the course since 1916.

Loeb, who was seconded from Citroën for this one event, was driving a car specially built for the event in four months, using proven components from Peugeot's 908 Le Mans cars. It has a steel spaceframe chassis, a mid-mounted 3.2-litre twin-turbocharged petrol V6, a six-speed four-wheel-drive transaxle, torsion-bar double wishbone suspension front and rear and carbonfibre racing brakes. The extraordinary power-to-weight and traction give the car 0-62mph acceleration of 1.8 seconds, and a 0-150mph time of 7.0 sec. 

Commenting on Loeb's performance, the managing director of Peugeot Sport, Bruno Famine, described Loeb as "an exceptional driver; one of the few in the world who could extract full performance out of this car". He said though Pikes Peak experts had predicted a time below nine minutes, Peugeot's own calculations had shown "the ideal time" was the one Loeb recorded. 

Peugeot says it will look for future one-off activities for the 208 T16, though it has nothing planned as yet. Global head of marketing Guillaume Couzy says the company would like to display the car at this year's Goodwood Festival of Speed, but final arrangements are yet to be made.

The top three results from some of the most popular classes can be found below:

Unlimited Class

1st - Sébastian Loeb - 8:13.878; 2nd - Rhys Millen - 9:02.192; 3rd - Jean-Philippe Dayraut - 9:42.740

Time Attack

1st - Paul dallenback - 9:46.001; 2nd - David Donner - 9:53.581; 3rd - Jeff Zwart - 10:13.856

Electric

1st - Nobuhiro Tajima - 9:46.530; 2nd - Hiroshi Masuoka - 10:21.866; 3rd - Greg Tracy - 10:23.649

Exhibition Powersports

1st - Carlin Dunne - 10:00.694; 2nd - Jake Holden - 10:24.058; 3rd - James Compton - 10:33.832

Pikes Peak 450

1st - Jeffrey Tigert - 10:32.964; 2nd - Davey Durelle - 10:38.697; 3rd - Dan Berendes - 10:56.724

Heavyweight Supermoto

1st - Jeff Grace - 10:57.928; 2nd - Joseph Bernard Toner - 11:04.319; 3rd - Eric Piscione - 11:05.278

Open Wheel

1st - Clint Vahsholtz - 11:07.305; 2nd - Donner Billingsley - 12:06.840; 3rd - Rodney O'Maley - 12:22.250

Pikes Peak Superbike 750

1st - Michael Henao - 10:31.499; 2nd - James McKay - 11:09.460; 3rd - Erik Dunshee - 11.42.837

 

 

Our Verdict

Peugeot 208

Peugeot has shown dynamic promise of late. Will the Peugeot 208 be a hit?

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Comments
10

30 June 2013

Watched this online, the coverage was poor but what an awesome achievement! I hope Romain Dumas is ok.

30 June 2013

The coverage was beyond poor, it was a joke how the two idiots presenting it kept on blowing their and red bulls trumpet about how wonderful it was.

Full credit to Loeb he was sensational today, I doubt there is another driver alive today who could have gone faster.

 

1 July 2013

please fix the news. Romain Dumas didn't go off, he had a mechanical failure (Battery)

1 July 2013

A great achievment,what next?

Peter Cavellini.

1 July 2013

An amazing, Peugeot Victory. Terrific. Showed the Yanks on their home soil.

 

www.KOOOLcr.com

 

1 July 2013

Bravo Seb! Incredible Loeb!

 

1 July 2013

Please put this into production. A fun Pug at last - its has been a while since the 306 Gti-6...

1 July 2013

You're underestimating the scale of this thrashing of the record, nearer 15%!

1 July 2013

That pretty much makes Sébastien Loeb the Usain Bolt of motoring.

4 July 2013

Pike's Peak is one of the most exciting motoring events to watch.

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