The 2008 DKR: The lion with voracious appetite for challenges
The muscular, thoroughbred yet beastlike forms of the Peugeot 2008 DKR provide a vivid indication of the new car’s serious desire for success.
It is behind the wheel of this purpose-designed machine that Carlos Sainz and Cyril Despres will defend the colours of Team Peugeot Total on next January’s Dakar.
Three weeks after the exciting news that Peugeot, Red Bull and Total have decided to join forces to contest the 2015 Dakar, the car that will spearhead the team’s challenge has finally broken cover.
The 2008 DKR shares an unmistakable family resemblance with Peugeot’s road-going crossover, albeit with more muscular forms, and more imposing overall proportions that have been honed to meet the challenge that lays ahead.
Its spectacular lines are the fruit of close cooperation between the experts at Peugeot’s Style Centre and their colleagues at Peugeot Sport’s Design Department, and the newcomer’s likeness with the production version is quite astonishing!
Far more than just another styling exercise, the 2008 DKR features an aggressive stance dictated by the technical constraints associated with its mission.
Indeed, Peugeot Sport’s design team had to answer one particularly fundamental question at a very early stage concerning the new beast’s transmission: four-wheel or two-wheel drive?
In the end, they’ve opted for an approach that was quite different to that of the competition. Given the off-road capability of two-wheel drive transmission and its ability to run on sand, that’s the choice they ultimately went for. It enabled them to fit bigger wheels which also benefit it from more suspension travel. The 2008 DKR consequently sits on 37-inch diameter Michelin tyres (almost 94cm)!
These considerations naturally had a significant knock-on effect with regard to the work of Peugeot’s stylists, but the four-strong design team rose enthusiastically to the challenge to pen the new Lion that will very soon take on the unique challenges posed by cross-country rallying.
What lies beneath the bodywork remains a secret for the moment, but the 2008 DKR’s breath-taking forms are sure to cause a stir even before the new car starts to kick up dust as it begins to be put through its paces.