When the official launch of the Dakar 2021, which will take place in Saudi Arabia From January 3 to 15, the competition organizers also made their decision to turn the rally into a environmentally friendly competition, something that is expected to be achieved in 2030 when the car and truck classes only allow hydrogen-powered models. But that green path began to be traced in 2015 with the participation of an electric vehicle, the Activate 100% Ecopowered.
The prototype was an initiative of the Spanish company Acciona dedicated to the development of renewable energies. Although the 2015 and 2016 entries ended in dropouts, the third was the charm: In 2017, the buggy driven by Argentine Ariel Jatón reached the finish line of the toughest race in the world without consuming a drop of fuel or emitting a single CO2 molecule.
The Acciona 100% Ecopowered, built by the Jaton team, was packed with technology. Had a 250 KW AM Racing synchronous electric motor (about 340 hp), about 15.840 high performance batteries divided into modules that could be charged in 60 minutes, a solar panel and a regenerative brake that reversed the polarity of the impeller to generate more power.
With all these systems he achieved a autonomy of 300 kilometers and for this reason it was allowed to charge the batteries in special neutralizations of one hour each. To complete the Jaton race, which finished 57th and last, it took 111 hours and was 81 hours behind the French winner. Stephane Peterhansel (Peugeot), although it is worth clarifying that due to the energy charge it accumulated 41 hour penalty...
“With an electric car there are no problems with injectors, spark plugs, turbo, temperature… We raced the Rally of Morocco twice and the last two Dakar and we did not have the need to touch the engine. The factories are already realizing these advantages and in a short time there will be many categories of electric vehicles so that each brand can show its products "Jaton said as he reached the finish line.
Although at that time no brand had embarked on a project of this type, today there are already several projects. The most important, without a doubt, is Audi you hope to participate with your electric vehicle in 2022.