electrification is changing even the world’s toughest rally

In 2021, the Dakar announced the launch of the energy transition program baptized “Dakar Future“. The objective? That in 2023 the hydrogen electric vehicles arrive, in 2026 for all the elite pilots and already in 2030 that all categories have low-emission vehicles.

This year, the kingdom of oil par excellence has seen participants as diverse as the impressive RS Q e-tron electrificado from Audi, fuels from agricultural residues from BRX or Gaussin’s hydrogen truck.

Audi RS Q e-tron: intelligent performance

Carlos Sainz has managed to impose himself in Stage 3 of the Dakar Rally at the controls of the Audi RS Q e-tron, becoming the first driver to win a stage in cars with electric technology.

The cornerstone of the RS Q e-tron a electric drive system with energy converter with which Audi wants to set a new milestone in the toughest rally in the world.

The RS Q e-tron has four engines: three electric and one gasoline. The gasoline one together with one of the electric ones generate electricity for the batteries, while the electric ones are independent and have no connection to each other. For its part, the capacity of the high-voltage battery is 52 kWh, enough to cover the maximum distances planned for each stage of the rally.

The ‘Queen Scheherazade’, a hydrogen electric truck

The French company Gaussin, specializing in logistics, zero-emission vehicles and hydrogen technology, has given the Dakar something to talk about this year. Without competing, he has participated in the demanding race with a hydrogen electric truck.

Designed by Pininfarina and built in eight months, the H2 Racing Truck develops 800 hp thanks to two 300 kW motors. Nicknamed ‘Queen Scheherazade’, this 12-tonne truck advertises that it produces electricity and 100 liters of water every hour.

is capable of storing 80 kilos of hydrogen in 14 tanks. Of course, it is sponsored by the Saudi oil company Aramco. The objective is to continue testing this technology, which promises 250 km of autonomy in the worst conditions, and 550 km in the most benevolent.

Biofuel from agricultural waste


Prodrive has released the BRX Hunter T1+ for the Dakar 2022, a vehicle powered by biofuels.

baptized as Prodrive ECOpower, this biofuel promises to reduce CO2 emissions by 80% compared to gasoline. It is made up of generation 2 biofuel, made from agricultural waste, and so-called synthetic fuels, created by capturing carbon from the atmosphere.

The fuel has been developed at Prodrive’s facilities at its headquarters in Banbury, UK, and has been used in Team BRX’s Hunter T1+ with the same unmodified engines previously running on petrol.

Hino’s beast hybrid truck

Not as clean as the H2 Racing Truck but capable of developing more than 1,000 hp, the Japanese manufacturer of commercial trucks Hino has participated in the Dakar with a new hybrid truck.

It mounts a huge 8,866 cm3 in-line six-cylinder diesel engine, which develops 800 hp and 2,295 Nm of maximum torque. It is combined with a 206 kW or 280 hp electric drive that promises to cut times in this tough test.

Astara Team and synthetic fuels

Astara Team

The Spanish team has entered this Dakar with force to demonstrate the benefits of the synthetic fuels in competition with Astara 01 Concept.

Your bet is based on the so-called e-fuels, a liquid hydrocarbon that is generated from obtaining synthesis gas through the use of renewable energies.

Next, this synthesis gas is subjected to successive chemical transformation processes that result in a synthetic liquid hydrocarbon that promises to be easy to use, store and transport.

One liter of e-fuel contains 10,752 kWh, according to Astara data, and its energy efficiency is 12% higher than that of gasoline. “Only 9.3 liters of this fuel stores the same amount of energy as a 100 kWh battery in an electric car, which is 55 times heavier,” the team.

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Lenny Li

I started to play with tech since middle school. Smart phones, laptops and gadgets are all about my life. Besides, I am also a big fan of Star War. May the force be with you!

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