|FIA World Cup: Premiere - The all new Evoque RaBe Desert Warrior of Excite.|
We´ve heard a lot about the Land Rover Evoque for the rally-raid sport - now the car is for real. "Excite Rally Raid Team" driver and team Principal John Hardy recently took delivery of the new "Desert Warrior 3" off-road race car in satin black, also well known as "RaBe" car and now with the look of the Land Rover Evoque.
There were certainly fireworks as the team put the new car through its paces during a 2-day shakedown in Holland some days before. Initial feedback was all very positive, ranging from comments of "so beautiful" to "what a beast!"
UK-based Excite Rally Raid is an all-professional, all-British Dakar Rally team aiming to enter the 2013 FIA Cross Country World Cup. The team has spent several years planning to take on the gruelling Dakar Rally in 2014.
For 2013 and 2014, the team aims to start with a single vehicle but build up to running 3 vehicles, all specially-commissioned from RaBe Race Cars, driven by Martin Rowe, John Hardy and Andrew Coley.
"I’m really pleased with the new car" said John Hardy. "Sometimes manufacturers lose something between the initial concept and the real-world, finished version. Not this time! The vehicle has a real presence. It’s very well put-together, it’s strong and it’s rugged. And it looks the business!"
With over 20 years’ British National Rally Championship experience behind him, John Hardy will provide reliable and highly important support to both Martin Rowe and Andrew Coley, while being equally competitive. John Hardy has also spent many years working as a rally driving instructor, helping many British Championship drivers with car setup and driver training.
Ex British, Chinese and World Rally Championship winning driver, Martin Rowe, brings a wealth of success and experience only comparable to a few other ‘works’ FIA CC World Cup and Dakar teams. Martin’s list of achievements is impressive, with works drives for Peugeot, Renault, Ford and Porsche. Testing and development roles within both the Ford and Subaru works teams add to his profile.
"The thought and attention to detail in the design is mind-blowing: All the dials are at eye level, all the switches are where they need to be and the space in the cockpit will be critical as we’ll be spending hours strapped in" added John Hardy.
"In the hands of someone like Martin Rowe, it’s potentially a race-winning vehicle. Now the whole Excite team is itching to get racing and prove to the world that Britain still produces championship-winning cars and world-class drivers."
Mike Jones of RaBe Race Cars (manufacturer of the Desert Warrior 3), said: "The Desert Warrior 3 is designed to meet the new T3 FIA regulations. Therefore, it must run an engine from a car eligible for homologation as a T2 production car for FIA Rally Raid events."
"It runs a 3 litre twin turbo diesel capable of 350 BHP when unrestricted. The engine is all alloy and weighs an amazing 135 kg. This is mated to a 6-speed sequential box. The car has a bespoke chassis made from T45 tubes, all designed in-house and tested over the last three Dakars."
"The car is built with comfort in mind, although not quite the comfort of something like a road-going Range Rover Sport or Evoque. It is very roomy, even for big people, as fatigue can be a killer on the Dakar. The fuel tank is 260 litres, which gives us a range of 1,200 kilometres. The Dakar organisers specify 880 kilometres, but we know the Dakar and sometimes you drive much further than people believe is possible in one day, especially off road!"
"We have worked hard to get the handling and reliability perfect but also keeping fantastic dune-driving ability, which is all too easily lost when designing such cars. Just about everything on the car is bespoke, but of the OEM parts we do use, a very high proportion are from Land Rover. It took Volkswagen hundreds of millions of Euros and 5 years to win the Dakar, but being British we will do things our own way. Mark my words: we have produced a winning car!"
The Excite team’s preparations and training programme are now starting to peak and running in parallel with this, the team’s business arm is currently in partnership talks with several global brands about title sponsorship of the team. For obvious reasons, the team would love to be backed by a British sponsor to round off the all-British package.
David Jones, Excite Rally Raid's team manager, said: "Things may have been a little quiet for the team for a while as the new vehicle was under development, but with this fantastic car now in our armoury, we’re definitely back and ready to make a lot of noise! Congratulations to RaBe Race Cars for producing such a stunning piece of automotive engineering!"
Engine: Diesel 3.0 litre
Power: 275 Hp / 850 Nm with FIA restrictor.
Transmission: 6-speed sequential gearbox.
Dampers: 8 x Reiger coilovers.
Wheels: 16” Compomotive Atacama Rally Raid wheels.
Tyres: BF Goodrich Desert Race G series.
Fuel Tank: 260 Litres.
Length: 3.8 m.
Width: 2.0 m.
Height: 1.9 m.
Wheel Base: 2.8 m.
Weight: 1,900 Kg.
CCV (Corner Control Valve): This is a Reiger patented system which detects whether you are on a straight or in a corner. In a corner it makes the compression damping of the outer wheel stiffer so that you have less roll. This allows you to run a softer anti-roll bar or even no anti roll bar because this system does take over a part of the anti-roll bar function.
RCV (Rebound Control Valve): This system is developed to gain more grip. It detects if the wheels are on the ground or not. If not, it softens the rebound damping so that the wheel drops quicker.
LCV (Lateral Control Valve): This Reiger-patented system detects, during compression, if this compression is caused by the wheel that is going up or the chassis that is going down. If the chassis is going down, because for instance you jump into a hole, it further stiffens the compression damping. This allows you to run a softer, more comfortable basic damper setup.
HPDP (Hydraulic Progressive Double Piston): This is a double piston system with a damper that has a speed-dependant characteristic. On an impact with high damper speed, the double piston damping will be stiffer than with a low damper speed. The double piston comes in earlier with a high damper speed than with a low damper speed.
2012/11/09 | 18:39 CET | ARTICLE: MR/HS/JONES