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Look who's testing in Parker.


Well-Known Member
The pugs weigh about 1/3rd as much as a TT. They smash the minis, the minis smashed the VW, and the VWs got 11th and 16th in 2007 Baja5. TTs have improved, but not by the strides these Dakar vehicles have. 15 year old TTs are still doing well in Baja. TTs will crush the Pugs through the rough, and especially through SF. But that's where I see their advantage ending. The Pugs will be faster through every approach, through, and exit of a turn. TTs take a while to slow down and wind up. There is no advantage to being heavier. If they pulled the cork off of a pug and put an experienced Baja &Pug driver (like Bryce, a guy who is wicked fast naturally, knows Baja, and will have the opportunity of learning the limits of the Pug) they will absolutely compete. I do think that experience in the local terrain will be very important, Baja doesn't f*** around and pushing in the wrong spot can kill you. Not to mention with their resources what they'd be able to devote would be unheard of. Do I think it will happen, no, but I would love to see.

Dirty Harry

Well-Known Member
The pugs weigh about 1/3rd as much as a TT. They smash the minis, the minis smashed the VW, and the VWs got 11th and 16th in 2007 Baja5.
The Minis never beat the Touaregs, VW ended their program and then X-Raid filled the vacuum.

And as good as Bryce is, I wouldn't pull Sebestian Loeb or Stephane Peterhansel out of the driver's seat to put Bryce in...

Mark Newhan

Well-Known Member
Seems Leduc put that argument in the trash can in #3 at the 1000 last year.
That truck was not normal even back in the day. It has also been upgraded with everything modern. Take any of the Walker trucks, Simon's, the LeDuc Jeep Cherokee and just about every other truck, and I'm certain that '79 that I built for Olliges would beat them, and incidentally, the 3 was having a tough time keeping up with me at NORRA last year, however if did have a 750 horsepower pump gas engine, versus our small headed 438 cubic inch, 700 horsepower engine on race gas.

Btw.... Kyle isn't human ;)
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Well-Known Member
Also I forgot to mention there was a f250 with AGM on the side with it.

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Well-Known Member
Probably a bit of conspiracy theory here. But of all the places on the globe where Peugot could test suspension, many of those locations much closer than Parker, AZ.......RG's home away from home and known test location for the Hummer and Gordini. Some could say a lot of off road guys test there which would be a valid point. But there are not a lot of Dakar guys who test there.

Testing? Shot across the bow? A little retribution for past comments made? Pure coincidence?.....A convenient combination of all of the above while also testing?.......Not saying RG is even on their radar, who knows But shiot like this is how rumors get started. Regardless, it does make things interesting for the folks out West. I wonder if RG bites. It has been pretty quiet at RGO in regards to Dakar.

I know, I know......Let the bashing begin ;)


Well-Known Member
Seeing a Pug at the 1000 would be great, I would be very curious if they would last. Keep in mind that Dakar is a stage race, so the car only has to stay together for short periods. Pounding these cars through 900+ miles in one shot is something they have not seen...AGM tried to design a light, smaller wheelbase TT and found that it couldn't handle the punishment. The weight on a TT is directly proportional to the strength of the structure to stay in tacked. Jimco has built both Dakar and Baja cars, they would have the best perspective on the differences.


Baja Bobsled Team
Commercially it doesn't make sense because Pug hasn't sold cars in the USA since 1991. There was a rumor a year ago that they might be interested in returning, in which a B1K publicity stunt might make sense, but otherwise I don't see what there motivation would be. Does Peugeot sell cars in Mexico?


Well-Known Member
Logistically it's easy to get in and out of in terms of customs and travel. PHX and LAS have wide body freighter service from Europe. LAX has a bunch more. This part of the world is the epicenter of desert/off road racing. Between AZ; Vegas and the I15 corridor, SD to Riverside you can either get anything you need or have it made. Contract support services are plenty. Chase crews and neck down labor is plentiful. On the off chance they needed something more in depth this is the place as well. The terrain in Europe is far and few between. Northern Africa is dicey politically. They may have wanted to go to South America but that's equally as dicey. If someone got enough money together (on the level of Mini or Peugeot) and someone like Skilton to run the thing this part of the world could field a kick ass Dakar team. There are the resources, skills and knowledge to go against the best of the best. You'd likely have to head hunt a few rally raid specialists but you could build a strong team if you could get the backing.


Well-Known Member
Given that they were testing the "old" Pug and not the brand new one and that Peugeot has sold off previous years of the Pugs as the new ones have been developed...any shot that it was a test to see if RG wants to buy/rent a '17 model while Peugeot moves on to the '18?


Well-Known Member
If I recall correctly, they have spent a lot of time testing in Morocco. Parker is pretty hot right now, I wonder if that played a part?
Good point about the heat in Parker. It's not too bad right now, it's not over 115* or so most days... :eek::D It's been so hot here I've had to wait until this week to finish the paint on one race car so I can get the Ranger out of the driveway into the garage to properly start the build. It was a few days of 117* or so here with some 120* plus in parts of northern AZ.

Morocco is good for this kind of testing. I've been to Casablanca, it's pretty cool. There are protests around the country and military action against protesters in the Rif region, one of the places to potentially test.

If that car was sold I doubt they'd still have the full livery on it and send Peterhansel to drive it. More than likely they'd have you come to their shop, send it out with a plain body and make you arrange to ship it out. With Peterhansel here I'd guess they were testing some new things inside an old car used as a test mule.

EDIT: I don't know if this comes into play but it's the top of monsoon season. In the next few weeks there will be some spectacular rain and flash floods up the corridor from the Gulf through the Mohave.


Well-Known Member
My guess is the Peugeot Rally Raid Team were testing in Parker, for testing suspension and tires (may be even a new tire spec/ design) on hot sand. (Tires and suspension usually have to work together) The BF Goodrich/ Michelin tires for the 3008 Dakar machines are made in the US? Good opportunity to 'real world' test without taking BF Goodrich US technical staff to test locations outside the US. The staff presence might have only been there in an unmarked pickup with thermal probes, tire wear measuring etc at the test location.

Peugeots are sold in Mexico. Citroen World Rally Team running at World Rally Mexico is probably the de-facto in country PSA - Peugeot/ Citroen big race/ team marketing/ advertising exercise - they won this year.

Red Bull tend to avoid too many team stack ups and already have Trophy Trucks with Red Bull sponsorship to run in 2017 Baja 1000.
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Well-Known Member
Being that it's last years Peugeot, I'm betting it's a lease to an American wanting to race Dakar in proven winning equipment. Call it the "B" Team with Pug support at the Dakar.

What Americans have shown interest in the past few years to race Dakar??? What Red Bull driver had to back out last year due to a stunt injury? Just speculation.

This is probably a closer bet as to why the Pug is hear, and it's not "Factory Peugeot" testing last years model in the USA. It's not cost effective with all the other places in the workd they already race & test. Plus if this was a real Peugeot test their would be 40-50 Peugeot R&D staff with the car, and again they would not be testing and trying to learn something with last years car that has been completely reconfigured.


Well-Known Member
Though PSA (Peugeot Citroen) are establishing a beachhead car sharing operation on the West Coast, to recommence a US operation.
Is there a Mexican/ Latino off-road driver (partly Red Bull sponsored?) who expressed an interest in competing in the Dakar Rally?
Tavo Vildosola: The man who every road in Mexico fears (Though he states it would hard for him to take the time to do Dakar because of business commitments.)
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