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  Volkswagen Race Touareg 2

  Article Image gallery (6) Specifications  
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Country of origin:Germany
Produced in:2006
Introduced at:2005 Essen Motor Show
Source:Company press release
Last updated:December 05, 2005
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Click here to download printer friendly versionAt the Essen Motor Show the new Volkswagen Race Touareg 2 celebrated its German debut for the desert classic. After the historical success of recording the first ever podium place for a diesel vehicle in January and winning the 2005 FIA Cross Country Rally World Cup title with Bruno Saby/Michel Périn, Volkswagen starts the 'Dakar' in top form. With the new Volkswagen Race Touareg 2, the works team enters a vehicle that has been developed in every area in this, the latest running of the desert classic, and lines up at the start with five driver-teams - the largest squad so far.

The driving squad was increased from four to five teams for the 2006 Dakar Rally: In addition to the long-serving Volkswagen duos of Jutta Kleinschmidt/Fabrizia Pons (D/I) and the 2005 FIA Cross Country Rally World Cup winners Bruno Saby/Michel Périn (F/F), three equally competitive driver pairings were signed during the 2005 season: The South African-Swedish crew of Giniel de Villiers and Tina Thörner scored two second places for Volkswagen in the 2005 Cross Country Rally World Cup. Two-time world rally champion Carlos Sainz, with 26 wins to his credit the most successful driver in the World Rally Championship, seeks a new challenge in his 'Dakar' debut. With two-time 'Dakar' winner Andy Schulz alongside, he puts his trust in an experienced co-driver. The American Mark Miller is also new to the team. His co-driver is the German Dirk von Zitzewitz, who competed alongside Robby Gordon during the 2005 Dakar Rally for Volkswagen and who has already completed the 'Dakar' on two previous occasions together with Miller.

Every aspect of the extremely successful Volkswagen Race Touareg, with three victories and a World Cup title to its name, was further developed for the 2006 Dakar Rally. In particular the suspension and visibility for the driver and co-driver were optimised. The Race Touareg 2 is once again powered by a five-cylinder TDI-engine, whose power and throttle response characteristics have been measurably improved. In it first competitive outing in October at the Rally Baja Portalegre, the new Race Touareg 2 claimed second, third and fourth positions in the hands of Volkswagen works drivers Jutta Kleinschmidt, Carlos Sainz and Bruno Saby.

The 2006 Dakar Rally starts in Lisbon on 31 December. The route runs through Portugal, Spain, Morocco, Mauritania, Mali and Guinea to Senegal, where the teams are expected at the finish at Lac Rose on 15 January. With Kleinschmidt/Pons, Saby/Périn and Gordon/von Zitzewitz, Volkswagen occupied third, fifth and twelfth places respectively at the 2005 Dakar Rally. In addition, a total of four stage victories and twelve top-three finishes in the day's stages were achieved; furthermore Volkswagen drivers led the overall classification for four days.

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  Article Image gallery (6) Specifications