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THE CAR: 01 CONCEPT

The ASTARA 01 is the best possible solution to compete in the Dakar Rally at the highest level in a sustainable fashion. This 2WD, category T1.3 buggy is powered by sustainable fuel and it is the lightest vehicle in its category, with only 1,590 kilos of unladen weight, thanks to its construction with lightweight materials and its mechanical simplicity: As a result it’s the vehicle that requires the least amount of energy to move.

Additionally, the energy storage system of this sustainable fuel is the highest energy density among all those used in Dakar: 10,752 kWh per litre. This is the way to transport energy in the smallest size and lowest weight possible. As a result, the ASTARA 01 is capable of loading 3,870 kWh with its e-fuel tanks full, which only weigh around 400 kilos. Batteries capable of storing the same amount of energy would weigh more than 22 tonnes (with an energy density of 0.17 kWh per kilo).

With a light weight, long travel suspension and rear-wheel drive, the ASTARA 01 is a very fast and effective car to face a challenge like Dakar which requires high levels of power and a long driving range for the more arduous and demanding stages. The rear subframe has been adapted to include a spare third tyre while the wheel mounts for the electronically controlled self-inflating system have also been modified.

Furthermore, there are slight changes in the injection system and the electronic management to adapt to e-fuel. By regulation, the fl ange is now 37.2 mm, which lead to a slight improvement in the engine response, while the CO2 emissions have been reduced by 90% compared to those of a conventional gas engine. Moreover, the ASTARA 01does not emit solid waste or microparticles through its exhaust.

01 CONCEPT
Frame and bodywork Tubular with carbon fibre bodywork
Length, width, height 2,200 mm, 4,650 mm, 1,750mm
Wheelbase 2,980 mm
Weight 1.590Kg (40% front, 60% rear)
Suspension Front and rear double wishbone suspension, R53 threeway
adjustable shock absorbers with 440 mm of travel
Brakes AP Racing brake discs
Wheels 17-inch forged Wheel Pro
Tyres BF Goodrich 37×12.5R17
Fuel tanks 2 x 180 litre e-fuel tanks
Stored energy 3,870 kWh
Engine LS7 7.0L V8
Flange 37,2 mm
ECU Motec M1
Power 325 kW at 4,700 rpm
Torque 720 Nm at 2,900rpm
Gearbox SADEV SL90-23 6-speed sequential gearbox
Clutch CP7373 triple plate clutch by AP Racing

Sustainable Fuel

Once again, we have chosen sustainable fuel for Dakar 2023, but this time we will use a 90% proportion. In other words, almost all the emissions of our road cars will be neutral.

E-fuel production is based on obtaining synthesis gas -through the use of renewable energies – which is subjected to successive chemical transformations that result in an eco-friendly liquid hydrocarbon which is easy to use, store and transport.

E-fuel is carbon neutral: it has no environmental impact. The CO2 emitted to the atmosphere during combustion is the same as what has been captured from the air during the production process. Furthermore, it does not emit solid waste or microparticles.

Like fossil fuels, e-fuel is able to store an enormous amount of energy in a very small, very lightweight size: one litre of e-fuel contains 10,752 kWh. Just 9.3 litres of this fuel can store the same amount of energy as a 100-kWh battery, which is 55 times heavier. The energy effi ciency of sustainable fuel is 12% higher than gasoline.

E-fuel can be stored and transported at ambient pressure and temperature, just like conventional fossil fuels and lubricants. Thanks to this, e-fuel can make use of the current transport and fuel distribution infrastructure (tanker trucks, pipelines, service stations…).

Furthermore, it is fully compatible with current internal combustion engines. In other words, it can power vehicles, airplanes and ships, which can keep operating in a sustainable, environmentally friendly manner.

Once the refi ning process is completed, e-fuel can completely replace conventional fuels and can be used as “e-gasoline”, “e-diesel”, “e-kerosene” and “e-lubricant”. e-fuel can also be mixed with conventional fuels and lubricants in any desired proportion, as its chemical composition is the same.

We will also measure our carbon footprint during the rally, but this year we will be even more committed compared to the previous edition, as e-fuel is an ecological, sustainable fuel thanks to its low emissions, both in the production phase and in its use, and solves the challenges of the energy transition concerning the storage and transportation of renewable energies.

Carbon footprint

In 2022, we showed that we were the most sustainable team at Dakar, auditing and more than offsetting our carbon footprint. Now, we’re setting the bar even higher. The ASTARA TEAM also wants to be an example of sustainability in the world of competition at Dakar 2023.

We are coming back to compete at the highest level with the least environmental impact, without an enormous expenditure of resources, putting the best possible solution on the ground in terms of performance and environmental protection.

This is our commitment, and we want to prove it with words and also facts. In 2023, the ASTARA TEAM will once again measure and report the carbon footprint generated in Dakar.

This processing of accounting and reporting the emissions from the ASTARA TEAM’s participation in 2023 will follow the standardized measurement protocols (GHG Protocol, ISO 14064) and will be revised by a renowned independent entity.

The GHG Protocol establishes 3 possible scopes when measuring the carbon footprint.

  • Scope 1: direct GHG emissions. For example, emissions coming from combustion in boilers, ovens, vehicles and so on, which are owned or controlled by the entity in question. This also includes leaked emissions (e.g., air conditioning leaks, methane leaks from pipes and so on).
  • Scope 2: Indirect GHG emissions associated with generating electricity acquired and consumed by the organization.
  • Scope 3: other indirect emissions. Some examples of activities in Scope 3 include the extraction and production of materials that the organization acquires, the work trips through external means, the transportation of raw materials, fuel and products (for example, logistical activities) carried out by third parties and the use of products or services offered by other parties.

In 2022 our measurements involved scopes 1 and 2. This year, we will also include Scope 3. At the end of the competition, we will create a full report of our carbon footprint and we will more than offset it like we did last year.

In addition to measuring, auditing and offsetting the impact of our activity during Dakar 2023, ASTARA TEAM can boast that we are able to create completely accurate and reliable data about the route that our ASTARA 01 drivers will take as they will be permanently connected.

Obviously, the rules of Dakar do not allow the exact location of the vehicles participating in the race to be used in real time, as this would mean an advantage in navigating the rally. However, it is possible to know these data later, so that the day after each stage we can know the exact route taken by the ASTARA 01 vehicles driven by Laia, Carlos and Óscar. This way, we can accurately measure our environmental impact through our ecological and carbon footprint.

Without a doubt, the Dakar Rally is an ideal stage to demonstrate ASTARA’s fi rm commitment to sustainable mobility in any environment, even in the most solitary, inhospitable and unpopulated ones. Traversing the Empty Quarter will be a turning point for the entire ASTARA TEAM.

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