Volkswagen breaks record for climbing Tianmen Mountain in China

The Volkswagen ID.R electric prototype set a first record for the ascent of Tianmen Mountain in China with 99 hairpin bends over just over 10 km.

After the Pikes Peak Hill Climb in the United States, the famous Nordschleife of the Nürburgring circuit in Germany and the hill race of the Goodwood Speed Festival in the UK, Volkswagen went to China to seek new laurels with its electrical prototype ID.R.

The German company’s 500 kW (680hp) electric motor racing prototype set a first record for climbing the road to Tianmen Mountain in China. Located in Zhangjiajie, northwest China’s Hunan Province, the site sits at over 1,500 meters above sea level, where there is a natural arch over 131 meters high, hence its name which, in Chinese, means ”  Gate of Heaven”. A very narrow and winding 10.9 km road, with 99 hairpin bends, leads to the summit.

Volkswagen’s ambitions in the Chinese market

Volkswagen has chosen to tackle this route with its electric prototype ID.R. Once again, the French driver Romain Dumas was behind the wheel for this attempt, which ended with a time of 7’38 “585 minutes, a time that does not say much in terms of performances since the first attempt of this kind, it will be necessary to wait until another competitor decides to attack this ascent in similar conditions to judge.

But why did Volkswagen set on Tianmen Mountain? The German brand is no secret of its ambitions in the Chinese electric car market and this kind of flattering communication is part of its strategy. Two ID models will be assembled and marketed in China in 2020. Next week at the Frankfurt Motor Show, Volkswagen will unveil the production version of the ID.3, its first electric sedan.