Cupra Rebel Racing Concept: Ride in the Race of Champions

Cupra Rebel Racing Concept: Ride in the Race of Champions

It’s a battle of racing giants in the Race of Champions, and of all things I’m caught up in the great battle between Laios and Oedipus: the day before, Petter and Oliver Solberg won the national title together for their country, but now father. and the son are fighting in War man against man. In supporting roles: Me, the AUTO BILD MOTORSPORT reporter, who is allowed to ride in the passenger seat in this 16th Round of the Race of Champions, with the Cupra Urban Rebel Racing Concept.

Even before I get in, I know what I’m getting myself into: Not only does the all-electric car with its shark nose and massive rear wing look very aggressive, the performance data is also impressive: the UrbanRebel draws 320 kilowatts on its territory. peak, which is about 430 hp corresponds – with an unladen weight of only 1230 kg, pushes us from 0 to 100 in 3.2 seconds.

Last seconds before the start: reporter Hackbarth and rally star Solberg in the Cupra Urban Rebel Racing Concept.

Photo: Cupra

Result: as soon as the traffic light turns green, we are already at the first corner – even though the UrbanRebel walks on water only 80 millimeters high. Finally, the route runs on the frozen Baltic Sea at Pite Havsbad in northern Sweden. The icy ground also means that not many things go straight: ramps are the motto and the view ahead is great – mostly through my side window!

Surfing is always a lot of fun

We whistle through the glacier, a drone hovering behind us, capturing the wild ride in spectacular television footage. Of course, the actual top speed on the narrow track is not that bad, but the occasional push makes you very happy: Only my driver, who was the 2003 World Kart Race Champion, has his hands full to keep us on track. In the end, son Oliver makes great speed on the same track and after two laps he is ahead by 0.856 seconds.

“Damn, unfortunately he is very good,” said Petter Solberg, who was beaten at the finish line, angry that he only passed on the best genes of the rally. Key keyword genes: The UrbanRebel also have them, as Adrien Tambay explains to me. The former DTM driver should know, as he is now a Cupra works driver and reigning champion in the ETCR, the world touring car championship for electric cars.

Nothing works without spikes: Adrien Tambay lets it rip on the icy ground in the Race of Champions.

Photo: Cupra

“Whether it’s there, in the WTCR or here on the ice: you can just tell that the base is right. Cupra is doing a good job there, because there are well-balanced cars everywhere,” praises the Frenchman. How soft and smooth the UrbanRebel is on icy ground is the biggest surprise for me when I travel. The expert explains: “The driving behavior is very balanced, so you have a lot of opportunities to play with it. If you don’t know how to drive on ice, it’s the right car to start with, because it doesn’t do anything. stupid.”

So Tambay has to do the latter himself. The 31-year-old laughs: “I’m not used to being here on the ice, but it’s fun, especially with the handbrake too much sliding. It’s the opposite here, that’s what you want.”

UrbanRebell’s market launch is 2025

In 2025, UrbanRebel will also enter road series production. Tambay is very surprised: “It was originally intended as a pure concept, but now it drives and comes closer to a real rallycross car.” As Cupra is now widely positioned and active in various racing series, the brand also benefits from training on different platforms.

Cupra Extreme E

Fast Sweden: Klara Andersson proudly displays her Auto Bild Motorsport E Cupra Extreme E.

Photo: Cupra

Anyone who likes it harder is in the right place with Klara Andersson: the young Swede is the shooting star in Extreme E, he recently surprisingly won the season finale of the electric series in Uruguay together with Dakar winner Nasser Al-Attiyah – and raves. about his company’s car, the Cupra Tavascan XE, which he shows me in more detail alongside the Race of Champions.

“The car pushes me – and I push back!”

The extreme athlete has a height of 4.4 meters and a height of 1.85 m, a four-wheel drive with two electric motors – one in the front, one in the back. The 1.8 ton goes from 0 to 100 in 4.5 seconds. “I’ve never driven anything comparable, it’s like a spaceship,” grins Andersson, who came to Extreme E through karting and the World Rallycross Championship and feels very comfortable there: “The car pushes me – and I go back! But once you. learn how to use it, it’s a lot of fun.”

Not surprising with at least 550 hp. “Oh, that’s not much,” laughs the speedy Swede, “but it’s less about start-stop and more about carrying speed. It’s more of a dance than a drag race, a kind of dance on them Rock.” Or in this case ice. In the middle of March, Andersson starts playing again: Then the new Extreme E season starts at the Desert X-Prix in Saudi Arabia.