Twenty years ago Nick Heidfeld set the all time record for the Goodwood Hill Climb at the wheel of a Formula 1 McLaren.

Last yeat Volkswagen’s all conquering ID.R electric race car has set the fastest time for an electric car.

This year the ID.R is returning to take Heidfeld’s record away.

Like most things in life however it couls all depend on the weather.

That current record stands at 41.6 seconds.

On its last attempt, with Roman Dumas at the wheel, the ID.R posted 43.86.

“A change is taking place in the field of production vehicles and in motorsport,” says Volkswagen Motorsport Director Sven Smeets.

“Electric cars are becoming increasingly more powerful and have long since reached the same level as cars with combustion engines in many areas.

“In Goodwood, we want to show that the electric drivetrain in the ID.R can mix it with Formula 1.

“However, whether or not Romain Dumas can successfully challenge Nick Heidfeld’s track record also depends on the conditions at the weekend.”

The German’s McLaren-Mercedes MP4/13 was powered by a naturally-aspirated V10 that generated 574kW.

The ID.R’s electric powertrain is good for 500kW.

The unsettled weather in southern England and the condition of the route in the grounds of Goodwood House are just a few of the uncertainties, with which the team is confronted.

Bridgestone is supplying the tyres for the attempt.

It also supplied the rubber for Hedfeld’s McLaren.

“It is difficult to judge correctly how much grip the track will provide,” Dumas said.

“That changes all the time over the course of the weekend.”

The biggest differences in the configuration of the ID.R this time around are the size of the lithium-ion batteries on board and the energy management.

“The latest evolution of the ID.R has been optimised for a sprint,” Technical Director at Volkswagen Motorsport, François-Xavier Demaison, said.

“In Goodwood, the only things that count are maximum power and minimum weight.

“With drive on board, the ID.R weighs less than 1000kg.”

The ID.R covered roughly 20km when it set the all-time record for Pikes Peak in June 2018 and the electric record at the Nürburgring-Nordschleife (D) about four weeks ago.

That is more than 10 times the length of the route at the “Festival of Speed”.

goodwood - volkswagen IDR - Goodwood take #2 — VW goes after Formula 1 record

goodwood - heidfeld goodwood - Goodwood take #2 — VW goes after Formula 1 record

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Riley

Chris Riley has been a journalist for almost 40 years. He has spent half of his career as a writer, editor and production editor in newspapers, the rest of the time driving and writing about cars both in print and online. His love affair with cars began as a teenager with the purchase of an old VW Beetle, followed by another Beetle and a string of other cars on which he has wasted too much time and money. A self-confessed geek, he’s not afraid to ask the hard questions - at the risk of sounding silly.