Toyota "needs" turbo engine to fight Peugeot, Mini - de Villiers

Giniel de Villiers believes Toyota will need turbo power in order to be able to fight for future Dakar Rally wins against Peugeot and Mini.

Lacking the raw pace of the factory Peugeot and X-raid Mini squads, Toyota driver de Villiers was forced to be content with third overall, gradually climbing the order as his rivals hit trouble.

Both Peugeot and Mini use turbocharged diesel engines, in comparison to Toyota's normally-aspirated petrol unit, and the 2009 Dakar winner says turbo power may be a necessity in future.

"Winning takes a bit of everything," de Villiers told "We need to see what we can do, but I think maybe we need a turbo engine.

"We have a very good normally-aspirated engine, our cars are reliable, but we just need to find a little more speed.

"In the first week we were unable to keep the pace of the rest, but in the dunes we had a great ability to fight. We need to be consistent in all types of terrain, and not one in particular."

While de Villiers was satisfied to reach the podium for the seventh time in his Dakar career, beating X-raid's Mikko Hirvonen by just under four minutes for third, he admits he was also left frustrated.

"It's good to be on the podium," the 43-year-old said. "If you finish on the podium must be happy because it is not easy to achieve.

"But it is a bit frustrating for us because we wanted to fight for victory, so for sure we need to work on getting a bit more speed.

"We were battling in the beginning to compete, and we only managed to make time to get on the podium when the race got really difficult in Salta and Belen."

Additional reporting by Luis Ramirez and Khodr Rawi

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About this article
Series Dakar
Event Dakar 2016
Drivers Giniel de Villiers
Teams Toyota Racing
Article type Breaking news