The French firm had hinted at its intentions to return to the rallying fold with a highly successful Pikes Peak outing helmed by Sebastien Loeb in a 208 T16.
Following on from that success, Peugeot has revealed it will enter the gruelling Dakar Rally in 2015 with an as-yet-unannounced model, driven by former WRC champion Carlos Sainz and Cyril Despres.
Team Peugeot Total’s return comes 25 years after it dominated the annual event between 1987 and 1990, first with the 205 T16 and then the 405 T16. Since then, the event has moved from Africa to its current home in Latin America, traversing a route more than 10,000km in length.
“We are delighted to be returning to the Dakar because it’s an event which enjoys extensive coverage globally,” said Peugeot CEO Maxime Picat. “It is well known in Europe, as well as in such important markets as South America and China. It takes place in South America, with much of the action in Argentina where Peugeot has traditionally enjoyed a strong foothold.”
“[Our decision to compete] obviously follows in the wake of our Pikes Peak victory in 2013. That was a very special moment which showcased what Peugeot Sport is capable of achieving in association with Total and Red Bull. It was a win that gave us wings and led us to take a close look at what other motorsport programmes we could do together. The result of that process was the decision to return to the Dakar.”