Audi brings circuit racing safety tech to the Dakar Rally

22 November 2021

LONG before Audi unveiled the RS Q e-tron to the public in summer 2021, the racing engineering team was already intensively involved in the Dakar Rally. The risks in off-road racing were at the centre of the considerations for a sophisticated safety concept.

From the electrical safety of the high-voltage system, to optimum passenger protection in the event of accidents, the design department has, it says, had to master many challenges.

The protective and load-bearing basic structure of the Audi RS Q e-tron consists of a tube frame. The regulations stipulate that this structure be made of metallic materials. Audi has opted for a heat-resistant, alloyed quenched and tempered steel from the aerospace industry that contains the alloying elements chromium, molybdenum and vanadium (CrMoV).

The tube frame complies with the geometry defined in the regulations and fulfils the required static pressure tests. Audi additionally protects the drivers with panels made of composite materials in the spaces between the frame. These components made of carbon fibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP), in some cases supplemented by the tear-resistant Zylon, prevent the penetration of sharp and pointed objects from outside. Likewise, they protect the drivers and co-drivers from any problems with the high-voltage system.

“The structural design of the frame incorporated methods and findings that we have honed over decades in many disciplines,” said Axel Löffler, Chief Designer RS Q e-tron.

These include the tubular frame designs from the DTM (2004 to 2011) as well as the sheet steel chassis in rallycross (2017 to 2018) and the CFRP monocoques in the LMP sports cars (1999 to 2016), in the DTM touring car (2012 to 2020) and in single-seater racing in Formula E (2017 to 2021).


Latest issue

FREE Newsletter

Stay up to date and a chance to win 1 Years Subscription*

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Latest Tweets

Stay up to date with our social world

RACE TECH magazine @RaceTechmag
2 Feb
FIA launches green criteria for new F1 teams #F12023 #F1 #FIA #Motorsport #Racing #GrandPrix
RACE TECH magazine @RaceTechmag
30 Jan
RACE TECH magazine @RaceTechmag
30 Jan
Chevrolet’s first GT3 car, the new Corvette Z06 GT3.R, has made its public debut at Daytona International Speedway…
RACE TECH magazine @RaceTechmag
27 Jan
WMS TECH AWARD WINNERS REVEALED: The technical feats of the innovators @ReactionEngines @audisport Mcmurtry…
RACE TECH magazine @RaceTechmag
23 Jan
THE FIRST CUSTOMER HYDROGEN ICE: @ChrisPickering talks to the key figures behind a revolutionary new engine that co…
RACE TECH magazine @RaceTechmag
17 Jan
Mark Skewis offers a glimpse behind the scenes at last month’s Race Tech World Motorsport Symposium #sustainability
RACE TECH magazine @RaceTechmag
12 Jan
If you’re at @Autosport_Show today and tomorrow come and see us at stand no E562 for special show offers, with big…
RACE TECH magazine @RaceTechmag
8 Dec
If you’re at #prishow this week then stop by our booth 529 for lots of special show offers! #Motorsport