VW ID.4 SUV modified off-road to participate in 1000 mile race, looks set to win
The recently launched Volkswagen ID.4 electric SUV is ready to prove what it can do and show that it is up to the challenge. A racing challenge, that is to say. An ID.4 1st Edition RWD modified off-road is expected to compete in the upcoming Mexican 1000 Race of the National Off-Road Racing Association (NORRA).
Tanner Foust, professional driver and Volkswagen brand ambassador, and Rhys Millen took charge of modifying and testing the ID.4 for an extreme environment.
The main thing to change was the suspension. Millen and Foust did this by adding rally-style struts to the wheels, for better shock absorption. Additionally, 18-inch wheels were used to replace the 19-inch ones, while 255/70 R 18 tires help with cushioning and wheel travel.
The next step was to add 3.8-inch steel skid plates to the undercarriage and lift the radiator a few inches, for faster cooling and better approach angles.
The interior also had to be modified for racing and that involved replacing the heating, air conditioning and ventilation system with a roll bar. Safety racing seats and additional screens for important indicators such as battery temperature have been added.
In addition to these changes, the ID.4 will retain its standard 201 horsepower electric motor, drive systems and 82 kWh drums. According to Foust, the SUV did its best when it was left in its usual driving modes, with traction control. In this way, the modified ID.4 has been shown to be able to maintain good speed over different types of terrain.
Reloading the SUV throughout the competition is another important aspect to take into account. A 50-kW a portable fast charger powered by a portable biofuel generator was the solution.
The goal of the Volkswagen team is to complete almost 98% of the stages of the race in a loop without having to recharge. This will demonstrate the performance of ID.4 in an extreme environment.
“We worked closely with Volkswagen engineers to find the right driving style for different types of terrain that could strike a balance between speed and battery consumption. It’s the start of the competition with electric vehicles, but we already have several ideas of what we would like to do next year.. “Said Foust.
The NORRA race will take place April 25-29 in Baja, Mexico.