Volkswagen test driver Romain Dumas described his record-setting run up the Tianmen Mountain in China as “my most spectacular outing” after setting yet another hillclimb benchmark in the electric ID.R prototype.
Having already beaten the records at both Pikes Peak and Goodwood, and broken the electric lap record of the Nürburgring, VW opted to be the first to run a car competitively up the 11km (6.8-mile) ‘Big Gate Road’ that climbs the mountain toward Heaven’s Gate – a 131.5-metre natural arch.
Dumas completed the 99-turn run in 7min 38.585sec to establish the record. After the run, Dumas said: “The road is incredibly narrow and winding, but the drive was unbelievably fun. The huge torque of the ID.R was a big advantage on the short straights, while the aerodynamics helped on the fast sections.”
Currently there are no further plans to run the ID.R, posing the existential question for VW of what to do with a record-breaking car when there are no more records around to be broken?
V-to-C Miscellany, September 1986
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