You may remember the Volkswagen W12 supercar from the Nineties, also known as the VW Nardo, teasingly produced by the Wolfsburg Giant only as a concept to whet our appetite merely in video games and petrolhead dreams.

Volkswagen never did produce a supercar in the end leaving the task to other fancy brands in its Group portfolio, but now the company is at it again, teasing us with an impossible car that’s destined only to compete in the infamous Pikes Peak hillclimb in the US state of Colorado.

So no, you can’t buy this spectacular looking Volkswagen ID R, but you can see it silently whooshing up the Rockies — it’s electric — this June when the Pikes Peak race kicks off.

With batteries and electric motors powering all four wheels, the car is meant to be a technological demonstration of VW’s upcoming ID all-electric line of vehicles — the company plans to introduce more than 20 all-electric cars by the year 2025, with ID family line production starting from next year.

“We want to be at the forefront of electromobility,” said VW’s development head Dr Frank Welsch. “Competing in the most famous hillclimb in the world with the ID R Pikes Peak not only has symbolic meaning, but is also a valuable test for the general development of electric cars.”

The ‘Race to the clouds’ has been held since 1916 and runs 20km up the Pikes Peak mountain to a height of 4,300 metres above sea level. VW last ran for an overall with a twin-engined Golf producing 652 horsepower, but the ID R will serve up significantly more than that although the Germans are still keeping the performance specifications secret.

Although back in 1987 that twin-engined Golf narrowly missed out on a victory for VW, this time Wolfsburg is back to finish what was started 30 years ago.

“It is about time we settled the score,” said Volkswagen Motorsport boss Sven Smeets. “The ID R Pikes Peak represents an extremely exciting challenge for us, to show what is possible with an electric engine in motorsport. The entire team behind our driver Romain Dumas is highly motivated to set a new record for electric cars.”

Speaking of which, that record in the electric prototype class currently stands at 8:57.118 minutes, set in 2016 by New Zealand’s Rhys Millen in his electric e0 PP100. That car produced over 2,500Nm of torque and 1,600 peak horsepower, so that gives you an idea of what to expect from the VW.


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