The new Peugeot 3008 DKR during a studio photoshoot at Paris, France on August 7, 2016.

The new Peugeot 3008 DKR during a studio photoshoot at Paris, France on August 7, 2016.

Following successful campaigns in Dakar and on the Silk Way Rally, the Peugeot 2008 DKR has now been succeeded by the 3008 DKR. Peugeot Sport has the services of veritable stars in its driver line-up: Stéphane Peterhansel took his 12th Dakar Rally title in January, while Dakar motorcycle champ Cyril Despres took his maiden four-wheeled win in July at the Silk Road Rally. Rally legends Sebastien Loeb and Carlos Sainz (Sr) will also be in the mix for Peugeot Sport’s 2017 Dakar Rally campaign.

“The new 3008 symbolises the next step. Our goal with this car was to take the weaker points of the existing car and make them stronger, while capitalising on all the existing strengths to improve them still further. There are also some new regulations, which we obviously needed to comply with,” said Bruno Famin, team director for Peugeot Sport.

The new Peugeot 3008 DKR during a studio photoshoot at Paris, France on August 7, 2016.

The new Peugeot 3008 DKR during a studio photoshoot at Paris, France on August 7, 2016.

The 3008 DKR’s exterior dimensions and features are governed by rules laid down by the sport’s governing body, but its distinct design cues are still evident. “Our new Dakar car is the most extreme expression of Peugeot’s latest SUV. It keeps the distinctive design language of the road car, but transports it into a rally context. And that’s the dream job for any designer: when you create a car, you always have a competition version at the back of your mind,” said senior exterior designer at Peugeot, Sébastien Criquet.

Exact technical details are scarce, but Peugeot Sport says the 3008 DKR is an evolution of the 2008 DKR that ran before it. The 3.0 litre V6 turbodiesel powerplant that formed the basis of the 2008 DKR is retained and developed for this year’s 3008 DKR. Improved driveability and greater torque at low revs are keys items on the agenda, despite smaller, 38 mm air intake restrictors resulting in a net loss of 20 hp, down to an estimated 330 hp, while improving on the outgoing car’s 800 Nm of torque.

The new Peugeot 3008 DKR during a studio photoshoot at Paris, France on August 7, 2016.

The new Peugeot 3008 DKR during a studio photoshoot at Paris, France on August 7, 2016.

Air-conditioning, perhaps one of the most unexpected features in a competition vehicle, is carried over from the 2008 DKR. It is a crucial addition, according Peugeot Sport, as crew members spend up to 12 hours a day in cabin temperatures that can surpass 60 degrees centigrade; the added comfort should help the drivers sustain even higher levels of performance.

Staying with the 2008 DKR’s winning rear-wheel-drive layout, Peugeot Sport is confident of strong performances on the back of their Dakar victory earlier this year being the first by a two-wheel-drive vehicle in 15 years.