Audi Will Work With a Professional Race Car Driver to Develop EVs
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Car events like NASCAR and rallying are some of America’s favorite racing pastimes. NASCAR racing is a more traditional event the whole family can enjoy, but rally racing has seen growing popularity across the U.S.
Audi thinks they’ve found the man that can help keep car racing alive as the world transitions to electric vehicles (EVs). According to CNET, Ken Block has agreed to partner with Audi to help them develop electric cars. Audi is partnering with Ken Block to electrify race cars.
Who is Ken Block?
Ken Block has been in racing for 16 years, starting his career in rallying in 2005. He has participated in the World Rally Championship (WRC) as well as multiple X Games. He raced with Hoonigan Racing Division, originally named Monster World Rally Team, which he founded in 2010.
His claim to fame came in 2008 with his Gymkhana video series where he invented a precise type of driving that focused on completing courses as fast as possible. This racing style emphasizes control, and Block’s crazy stunts earned him a strong following. His series garnered over 550 million views overall.
Block’s video series and fame helped to popularize rallying in America. Gymkhana has spread across the world, and Americans have now broken into the worldwide network of rallying. Block is one of the only American drivers to earn points in the WRC.
How is Audi collaborating with Ken Block?
Audi has deep roots in rallying, and Ken Block will likely work with the brand to bring more electric cars into racing. However, the debate around using EVs in racing has been a contentious one for fans.
NASCAR fans have been vocal about wanting to keep combustion-engine cars on the racetrack, saying that the loud, booming engine sounds are an important part of the experience.
Rallying fans, though, are showing less hesitation at the idea of electric race cars. The races are much less contained, so the sound isn’t a major factor in the enjoyment of the sport. The fans care about speed, and as far as they can tell, there won’t be any sacrifices in that aspect.
The logistics of electric rallying present some challenges, as race organizers would have to install charging stations along the racetrack. But this will be a big step towards greener race cars.
Audi’s partnership could help introduce more EVs to racing
Many consumers have doubts surrounding EV range and speed. Introducing more EVs to rallying could be a way to quell some of those worries and encourage more people to switch to electric.
The collaboration between Audi and Block could improve the performance and popularity of racing EVs. Electric car rallying could show Americans that EVs can be capable, reliable, and fast when you want them to be.
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