VW reveals new Dakar machine

Volkswagen has revealed the Race Touareg 3, the car it hopes will carry it to a third successive victory on the Dakar marathon

VW reveals new Dakar machine

The new car was launched in Trier last night - and features a radical overhaul of the aerodynamic cooling. Following intensive tests in Spain and Morocco, the RT3 will make its competitive debut on the Silk Way Rally next month.

This year's Dakar winner Carlos Sainz will drive the only RT3 on the event, which starts in St Petersburg. VW's other three Dakar 2011 crews Nasser Al-Attiyah, Mark Miller and Giniel de Villiers will start Silk Way in Race Touareg 2s.

Vokswagen has won the last two Dakars, but motorsport director Kris Nissen says he is taking nothing for granted when it comes to next January's South American event.

Nissen said: "We are favourites and we will be well prepared, but when you take on the Dakar, first of all you take on the event itself, then you take on your competitors."

The RT3's aerodynamic revisions are the most obvious outward changes to the car, with an additional air intake mounted on the roof to take cool air to the radiator, dampers and fuel cell.

The new car was tested against its predecessor in Spain and Morroco recently, where the RT3 completed two Dakar distances in three weeks of running, in temperatures as high as 48 degrees around Mahmid.

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