Volkswagen will return to the prestigious off-road race - the Score Baja 1000 next year, with the Atlas Cross Sport R race truck. Volkswagen will compete in the Class 7 Open Production Unlimited category in November next year. Developed in conjunction with VW driver Tanner Foust and Baja race veteran Rhys Millen, the Atlas Cross Sport R will be the first four-wheel-drive vehicle to enter Baja Class 7 competition. Power will be distributed to the wheels from a 2-liter four-cylinder engine, first developed by Volkswagen Motorsport for use in its WRC and Rallycross programs.
Capable of running up to 600 horsepower the engine will be detuned to roughly 480 horsepower for an optimised balance of performance and reliability. Currently in concept form, the vehicle is being tested for further development and finalization before the 2020 race. Saad Chehab, Senior Vice President, VW Brand Marketing, "Racing as a sport has historically been limited to a very privileged group. However, Volkswagens competed at the very beginning of Baja racing, and we're excited to help keep the fun, youthful spirit of the competition alive by way of our Atlas Cross Sport R."
Even though a race program might seem to stray away from Volkswagen's commitment to the environment and meeting the goals of the 2050 Paris Climate Accord, the Baja program will be fully carbon neutral thanks to a carbon offset initiative via The Conservation Fund. This will plant more than 1,000 trees, or one per mile raced.