Liebherr-powered Kamaz trucks fill podium at Dakar
A trio of Kamaz Master trucks sporting Liebherr V8 engines scooped the top three places at this year's Dakar Rally
The three fastest trucks at this year's Dakar Rally were all powered by Liebherr.
Russian truck-racing team, Kamaz Master, secured all of the podium positions at the event, not to mention fifth place.
The trucks were powered by Liebherr V8 D9508 A7 diesel engines, which delivered speeds of up to 140 km/h during the race.
“Success in racing depends not only on the performance of the engine, but the probability of failure and repair times,” commented Wladmir Guba, technical director at Kamaz Master.
“Here, we place trust in the engines from Liebherr that have prove their worth in similar extreme conditions, above all in mining,” he added.
The challenging route of the Dakar Rally, which stretches from Argentina, through Bolivia, and into Chile, saw drivers cross both the Andes and the world's largest salt lake.
Kamaz Master took four trucks to the event, that of driver Ayrat Mardeev taking first place with a finishing time of 44 hours and 42 minutes.
Liebherr worked closely with Kamaz to develop a bespoke drive system for the team's Dakar Rally 2015 line-up. For example, changes were made to the charge air system to achieve higher charging pressures, alowing optimal combustion of the injected fuel quantities.
Even so, Liebherr did not have to modify its engines' supporting structures as they proved sufficiently robust for the race in their original format. The D9508 A7's lubrication system, for instance, is designed to work in temperatures of up to 45°C.
Built at Liebherr Machines Bulle in Switzerland, the engines offer a maximum output of 770kW, or 1,047 hp, and deliver torque of up to 4,500 Nm. The 8.9-tonne Kamaz Master trucks reached top racing speeds of 140 km/h.
The partners also impressed at the Africa Eco Race, which took place concurrently with its South American counterpart. A Liebherr-powered Kamaz Master truck also ranked first in this rally.