VW returns after a 30-year hiatus to challenge the world’s best in the “Race to the Clouds”. Wayne Gerdes – CleanMPG – January 1, 2018 VW is developing an all-new AWD all-electric prototype race car for the world's most renowned mountain race. The AWD prototype is scheduled to participate at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in Colorado on June 24th, 2018. That sounds great as a boilerplate release but the next part was striking. VW intends to set a New Course Record for electric cars during the 4,708’ climb over the 12.4-mile serpentine course with an average grade of over 7 percent and the finish near the peak at just over 14,000 ft. ASL. The how’s have barely been released but the why’s include the brands intention to transform itself after the TDI debacle into the leading global producer of electric vehicles. By 2025, VW has been stating it intends to offer 23 all-electric models worldwide. The all-electric race car is being developed by VW Motorsport in close cooperation with VWs Technical Development team in Wolfsburg, Germany. VW Motorsport last participated in the Pikes Peak mountain race in 1987 with a twin-engined Golf which DNF’ed due to a broken ball joint which occurred early in its one attempt up the mountain. With the finish just 3 turns and a quarter mile ahead, driver Klaus-Joachim Kleint had to abandon his attempt as the deep gorges of the Rocky Mountains became too dangerous to navigate with broken steering and suspension that was progressively becoming worse. The Pikes Peak Ascent What it looks like for the rest of us. My own last attempt at the summit of Pikes Peak was from within a 2015 VW Golf TDI just prior to its Guinness World Record 48-state Lowest Fuel Consumption drive. The attempt was thwarted at the 13,411 ft. ASL mark with a road closure due to undrivable conditions just 700' in elevation from the peak itself. The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb ‘Race to the Clouds' has been run each year since 1916. This year more than 120 vehicles are expected to enter over 22 classes. This includes racing cars via production vehicles and motorcycles to race trucks to lay claim to the title, "King of the Mountain". The current record in the electric prototypes class is 8 minutes 57.118 seconds, which was set by New Zealander driver Rhys Millen (e0 PP100) in 2016. It is going to be one hell of a year for the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.