The Nurburgring is every automaker’s backyard circuit it seems, a yardstick to both test against and measure how far you are ahead of the competition, even if what you’re driving will evolve to become a passenger car that will likely never be taken to the track.
Volkswagen has been taking its I.D R electric racer to various sporting events over the past year, pitting its Le Mans-inspired body and powerful electric powertrain against the best internal combustion cars there. And winning.
Not long ago, the I.D R set the all-time record for the ascent of the Pikes Peak hillclimb in Colorado, becoming the first car to complete the stage in less than less than 8 minutes, breaking the record held by Peugeot 208 T16 Pikes Peak.
Back in June, at the ‘Green Hell’, the Volkswagen I.D R lapped the 20.8km Nordschleife in an astonishing 6 minutes 5.336 seconds. For comparison, the current record holder for the fastest production car to lap the track was 6 minutes 44.97 seconds, set by the Lamborghini Aventador SVJ.
Their previous visit to the Nurburgring snatched the track’s lap record for electric vehicles, previously held by the NIO EP9, but now that the company have released more comprehensive findings from the run, it appears the I.D R also broke the record for consuming the least energy in doing do.
Throughout its flying lap, the EV racer consumed a mere 24.7kWh. While it isn’t a figure that you would parade about achieving, Volkswagen says the average Porsche 911 GT3 (which is significantly slower) requires four times more energy to complete the same lap, making the case for electric endurance racing that bit more robust.
The I.D R uses a fully carbon fibre construction and a slew of other weight-saving measures to bring mass down to just under 1,100kg. To press it to the ground and have it achieve the insane levels of grip through the circuit’s high speed corners, the I.D R utilises aerodynamics taken from Formula 1 and WEC endurance racing.
Powering the car is dual motor setup for a combined output of 500kW with energy being stored in an integrated array of lithium ion cells amounting to 43kWh, 9.2 percent of which the car generated itself thanks to its onboard brake energy regeneration, similar to the KERS system used in Formula 1.
Romain Dumas, the Volkswagen Motorsport works driver to piloted the I.D R, had to ensure tremendous amounts of centrifugal forces, topping out at 3.49g while storming through the “Kallenhard” section of the track. Sensors recorded the a top speed of 273km/h and posted an average speed of 204.96km/h.