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M-Class to run on Dakar 2006: Ellen Lohr/ORC

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M-Class to run on Dakar 2006: Ellen Lohr/ORC

 
Old 08-06-2005, 06:06 PM
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M-Class to run on Dakar 2006: Ellen Lohr/ORC

This is from ORC in Stuttgart:

Ellen Lohr to contest the Dakar desert rally



The competitive field for the 2006 Dakar Rally will be enriched by a prominent challenger: on 31st December, Ellen Lohr will start the classic desert rally behind the wheel of a Mercedes-Benz M-Class. Mercedes-Benz supports the participation of Lohr and the Team TEAM ORC Sport-Service via its business divisions ‘Global Services and Parts’, ‘Transporter’, ‘Passenger Car’ and ‘Truck’. AMG-Mercedes supports the project with know-how. The Navigon GmbH, Europe’s market leader when it comes to mobile navigation systems and a Lohr partner since 2004, will once again be involved.



For DaimlerChrysler, this involvement offers the opportunity of demonstrating the Mercedes-Benz brand’s performance level in all product areas. Team ORC-Lohr will be provided with the following service cars: the brand’s premium truck, the Mercedes-Benz Actros 6x6, and its smaller but efficient sister, the multi-purpose Unimog. The media representatives can ride in the new Viano 4MATIC, while the new M-Class represents the ideal base for both the rally car and the support vehicles.



“I’m particularly proud of the fact that Mercedes-Benz has opted for supporting us on this level,” says Ellen Lohr, “and I’m just as proud on the successful creation of an absolutely professional environment, as that’s exactly what you need when planning to contest the Dakar Rally. Quite obviously, Team ORC, as a reliable partner, is a vital part of this project.” TEAM ORC Sport-Service is responsible for the design and the construction of the rally spec of the Mercedes-Benz M-Class and the preparation and maintenance of the cars for and during the events respectively.



Lohr: Successful both behind the wheel and the microphone

Ellen Lohr was the most successful female touring car driver of the 1990s, with her win in the Hockenheim round of the 1992 DTM (German Touring Car Championship) season representing the highlight of her six-year DTM career. So far, this triumph has remained the only win for a woman in this top class series. It was a win that was secured with a Mercedes 190 E and against extremely competitive opponents such as former Formula One World Champion Keke Rosberg and touring car legend Klaus Ludwig. In 1997 and 1998, she entered the European Truck Championship for Mercedes-Benz.

In 2004, Ellen Lohr switched to off-road racing. “Following my many successful road racing years I was keen on a new challenge,” reveals Lohr. It was a challenge she coped with in fine style. In her only third appearance, she finished runner-up in the Baja Germany. Due to a technical failure of her racing car, her maiden Dakar Rally appearance came to an early end, but during the Morocco Rally, held in May, she caused a stir by setting top times. “For me, racing on dirt tracks was massive fun from the very first kilometre,” reveals Lohr. “And from now on, I’m going to accelerate even more.”


Last edited by Wolfgang; 08-06-2005 at 06:09 PM.
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Old 08-07-2005, 10:46 AM
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Thanks Wolfgang. You inspire me more and more to build the ML into a rally vehicle. I always tend to follow a theme with each vehicle and was at a loss with the ML.

Good to see Ellen Lohr back in the news. I sort of lost track of her after the DTM series however we don't get as much information on European racing here in the states. Thanks for the update!!
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Old 09-05-2005, 10:07 PM
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Ellen Lohr presents new desert rally co-pilot

Here's more, Darren:


Ellen Lohr presents new desert rally co-pilot

- 35-year old Detlef Ruf will be Ellen Lohr’s co-pilot in the M-Class prototype entered by Team ORC Sport-Service for the 2006 Dakar Rally.
- A two-week test with the brand-new rally prototype, executed in Tunisia in the second half of September, will represent the first appearance of the new pairing Lohr/Ruf.
- The Dubai Rally, held from 7th to 14th November is supposed to represent the racing premiere for the team with its new car and Ellen Lohr and Detlef Ruf in the c0ckpit.



“I purposely took my time to find a professional co-pilot who suits our team,” says former DTM ace Ellen Lohr. “I’m convinced that it is vital to be a well-rehearsed team, particularly when it comes to marathon rally racing. Hence, we signed a long-term deal. Detlef is young and highly motivated, yet, at the same time he’s got a lot of experience as co-pilot in the Dakar and other rallies.”

Detlef Ruf, who resides in Bavaria, Germany, has been contesting rallies since late in the 1980s. For five years already, he has been working as professional co-pilot, and in the past three years, the 35-year old gathered Dakar experience as co-pilot in fast racing trucks. “Desert rallies are the greatest you can compete in as a co-pilot,” he says. “And the Dakar represents the pinnacle of desert rally racing. To meet this challenge together with a racing driver as renowned and professional as Ellen Lohr is just great.”

Testing in Tunisia – the baptism of fire for the new M-Class prototype
The close to Stuttgart based Team ORC Sport-Service plans to extensively test the rally prototype Mercedes ML 350 Evo II from 18th to 30th September, in Tunisia. “Tunisia’s track conditions are perfect for testing on different terrains and adjusting the set-up to the respective terrains,” explains Team Principal Hans Baur. From 7th to 14th November, Ellen Lohr and Detlef Ruf will make the first racing appearance, in the Dubai Rally, thus competing with the numerous Marathon World Cup competitors who are going to contest this event. “Above all, the Dubai Rally mainly represents a learning programme, for us,” reveals Ellen Lohr. “The field in marathon rallying is extremely competitive, therefore, we want to gain experience and to get used to one another – and we want to see were we stand, compared to the other teams.”

http://www.orc.de
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Old 09-05-2005, 10:24 PM
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Thanks again Wolfgang. What I find interesting is the picture. Look how high the hood is in relation to them. The ML that they are posing in front of looks to be lifted as high if not higher than my Range Rover which is setup for off roading.

Thanks for the link too. Interesting information on the buildup of the race vehicles.
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Old 09-17-2005, 05:33 PM
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Darren,

here's a picture showing the new ML 350 EVO II. Yes, the suspension looks very high and might not be fast enough for a top 10 Dakar finish.. We'll see.

Weight reduced to 1750 kg. Exterior all plastic panels. 3.5 liter AMG V6 with 280 hp.






double shocks, they get too hot otherwise


Last edited by Wolfgang; 09-17-2005 at 05:37 PM.
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Old 09-17-2005, 08:30 PM
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Wolfgang,

Interesting photos. I too will be interested to see how it works. The vehicle looks too tall for the track width and tire size. I am also surprised that they are not running reservior shocks. Guess we will see how it all works.
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Old 11-03-2005, 03:47 PM
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Dakar 2006 Mercedes Service Vehicles

Here's the latest Dakar blurb:

Andreas Renschler delivers Mercedes-Benz service fleet for the Dakar rally to Ellen Lohr and the racing team ORC

- Unimog U 400 as “Fast Service”
- Actros 3345 with all wheel drive – onboard workshop
- Mercedes-Benz M-Class and Viano 4Matic to complete the service fleet
- ‘Kwikpower International’ and ‘Mercedes-Benz Global Service and Parts’ as strong partners
- Former DTM racing driver Ellen Lohr is going to race behind the wheel of a rally prototype

The launch of the new ‘Kwikpower Mercedes-Benz Teams’, held in Stuttgart, October 31st, represented the official starting shot for a new, exciting programme. From 31st December, former Mercedes-Benz works driver Ellen Lohr will contest the Dakar Rally, with Mercedes-Benz supporting Lohr and the racing Team ORC (based in Nellingen near Stuttgart and responsible for preparing, maintaining and entering the car) with service vehicles. “Our engagement in the Dakar Rally offers us the opportunity of proving the performance level and reliability of the Mercedes-Benz brand’s entire product range,” says Andreas Renschler, the DaimlerChrysler Board member responsible for the commercial vehicle business division.

The Unimog U 400, a vehicle that has been designed to cope with the most adverse conditions, has been entered for the truck competition and will also be used as a mobile spare parts depot. In the brand’s flagship, the Actros 3354 equipped with all wheel drive, a mobile workshop is going to accompany the event. The new high-capacity vehicle Viano 4Matic und M-Class cars will complete the service fleet. The new M-Class represents the perfect base for both service and rally cars.

Kwikpower Int. und Mercedes-Benz Service as strong partners

English company ‘Kwikpower International’ is renowned worldwide as an expert for renewable energies and fuels as well as carbon recycling. With its involvement in this project, the ‘Global Service and Parts’ business underlines its position when it comes to service and logistics. In more than 160 countries around the world, ‘Mercedes-Benz Service’ successfully conducts after-sales services. In addition to these two main sponsors, the team is supported by further strong partners such as NAVIGON, the European market leader for mobile navigation systems, and Airnergy: the young company from Hennef, Germany in the business for breathing therapy devices.

Ellen Lohr at the wheel of the rally prototype based on the M-Class

The rally car of Ellen Lohr and her co-pilot, Detlef Ruf, a prototype based on the new Mercedes-Benz M-Class, was autonomously developed by Team ORC Sportservice. The project is headed by owner Hans-Erwin Baur, with Andreas Lennartz as the designer. Following the first tests successfully completed in Tunisia, the Kwikpower Mercedes-Benz Team is now to contest the Marathon World Cup finale, held from 9th November in the United Arab Emirates (Dubai) and representing the team’s final test for the Dakar Rally. This year’s Dakar Rally starts on 31st December, 2005, in Lisbon, with the field having to cover approximately 9,000 kilometres across Morocco, Mali, Mauritania and Guinea before reaching the finish in Senegal’s capital, Dakar, on 15th January, 2006.

For download pictures of the team presentation and up-to-date information please visit our Media Site http://www.pr24.org/lohr. There, you also find the press kit of the Kwikpower Mercedes-Benz Team.

From http://www.orc.de
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Old 11-15-2005, 03:18 PM
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Ellen Lohr forced into retirement in the Dubai Rally

Ellen Lohr forced into retirement in the Dubai Rally

Ellen Lohr and her co-pilot, Detlef Ruf, had to retire during the course of the second stage of the Dubai Rally. Just a short time after having passed the first checkpoint, in the morning, several cars got stuck in a region with high dunes and deep, soft desert sands. Hence, the scheduled track was blocked. During the change manoeuvre, Ellen Lohr and her M-Class prototype crossed the brink of a high dune in a very unfortunate way – and the car somersaulted downhill. Lohr and Ruf succeeded in completing the special stage and making it to the bivouac, but afterwards, the team was forced into retirement as the damages on the prototype were to serious to be repaired on site

"Quite obviously we had hoped for a clearly better result," Ellen Lohr disappointedly said. "But we experienced one of these combinations of unfortunate circumstances, resulting in an accident, you often witness in motor racing. The only positive aspect was the fact that we found out that our M-Class is truly rugged."

For Team ORC, based in Nellingen near Stuttgart, were the rally prototype was designed and built, the vital period prior to the Dakar rally will be even busier, now. "During the weeks prior the Dakar start, taking place on 31st December, the team will keep working even harder now to bring a perfectly prepared car to Lisbon," added Lohr.

http://www.team-orc.de/bilder/artikel/03_dsc_6649.jpg

From: http://www.team-orc.de
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Old 11-23-2005, 08:45 AM
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great photos love the dakkar rally
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Old 12-14-2005, 10:56 AM
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There are 7 MLs registered for the Dakar 2006.


320 LOHR ELLEN RUF DETLEF MERCEDES ALL KWIKPOWER MERCEDES BENZ TEAM
328 STRUGO JEAN-PIERRE FERRI YVES MERCEDES FRA SDO/COMPETITION
332 JEAN-JOSEPH SIMON BOYERE JACK MERCEDES FRA SDO/COMPETITION
336 THOMASSE PASCAL LARROQUE PASCAL MERCEDES FRA SDO/COMPETITION
370 DRO PASCAL BASSE FRANCOIS XAVIER MERCEDES FRA GUY HOQUET AVENTURE
381 GINES JIMENEZ JOSE MARIA CORDOBA PABLO MERCEDES ESP SDO/COMPETITION
382 GALLOIS PHILLIPE BOCH LIONEL MERCEDES FRA SDO/COMPETITION
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Old 12-22-2005, 01:35 PM
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Kwikpower Mercedes-Benz Team Enters The Dakar Rally

Kwikpower Mercedes-Benz Team Enters The Dakar Rally
Posted on December 22, 2005 at 12:05 PM CST

In the world of desert rallies, few races can compare to the prestige the Dakar Rally offers its contestants. The 16 day, 5,500 mile course is one of the most difficult races in the world.

Continue on http://www.emercedesbenz.com
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Old 12-22-2005, 02:19 PM
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Great sh^t Wolfgang! Thanks. I am still really pained that I had to miss the Dubai run..... (I think the ML's got it handed to them there...I hope this time they're ready for Dakar!).
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Old 12-22-2005, 02:53 PM
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Originally Posted by ClayJ
Great sh^t Wolfgang! Thanks. I am still really pained that I had to miss the Dubai run..... (I think the ML's got it handed to them there...I hope this time they're ready for Dakar!).
Ellen Lohr doesn't have much Dakar experience. On her first Dakar last year she gave up on day 4 due to technical difficulties. Maybe she'll last a little longer this year with the support of the Mercedes Quikpower team.

Jpe Strugo is the most experienced of the ML drivers. Has been running the Dakar in an ML in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005 and won twice, in 2000 and 2003. Thomasse is also very experienced, as is their support team SDO/Competition, so it should be interesting..

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Old 12-22-2005, 03:04 PM
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I'm looking forward to it! Ran a Baja 1000 one time and I'll never desert rally again -- it is tough stuff....
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Old 01-02-2006, 01:34 PM
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Originally Posted by ClayJ
I'm looking forward to it! Ran a Baja 1000 one time and I'll never desert rally again -- it is tough stuff....
Yeah, tough stuff!!!

Today after the 3 legs of the Dakar 2006 all six MLs are still in the race, lead by Simon Jean-Joseph. Team Mercedes Ellen Lohr is on place 66 and things are going as planned - so far.


Simon Jean-Joseph on the Dakar 2006

My info page for Dakar stuff is here:
http://www.whnet.com/4x4/trips.html

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Old 01-02-2006, 02:32 PM
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I knew that I could count on you Wolfgang to post up. Last time I checked I think that they had just done the first leg and the (damn) Touregs were in the lead.....
I really want to see Lohr prove to everyone just how tough, and good, she is -- at least that I hope she is.
Dakar is the Big League Race isn't it?

I still think that I'm going to get a couple of the modified Toyota Camry V6 powered baja racers for one of my residences in the USA which has alot of open desert around it just for fun in the sun. And I am still considering a modified U-500 for the UAE for touring/camping and for some fun runs too. One of my other residences requires a Unimog for off-road touring/camping, but I went with the LWB crewcab model for that.

I posted up some pics of Unimogs -- and they moved 'em to the "Suggestions" closet! LOL.

Keep us posted. I'll check out your site. thanks-

Last edited by ClayJ; 01-02-2006 at 02:35 PM.
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Old 01-04-2006, 09:47 PM
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Originally Posted by ClayJ

Keep us posted. I'll check out your site. thanks-
Here's the report from day 4:


Nearly 30 positions gained

Quarzazate/Morocco – For Kwikpower Mercedes-Benz and the team's rally driver, Ellen Lohr, the fourth stage of the Dakar Rally turned out to be a great one. Over the course of the 387-kilometre special stage – the event's longest, so far – Ellen Lohr made up a lot of ground, thus gaining nearly 30 positions in the overall standings and moving up from 67 th to 39 th place, with the great co-operation between the 40-year old German and her 35-year old co-pilot, Detlef Ruf, being a key factor for this success. In today's special stage, the pairing in the new Mercedes-Benz M-Class finished 30 th , and without a tyre puncture with just 30 more kilometres to go, an even better result had been possible.

Ellen Lohr: “Today we finally had the chance of proving our car's competitiveness. The 387-kilometre special stage featured gravel tracks, dunes and twisty sections and was both demanding and varied. Despite several perils, my co-pilot, Detlef, delivered a flawless navigation performance and following yesterday's frustrating stage when we drove in the dust clouds of the cars in front of us and didn't have the slightest chance of securing a better result, today's result proves that we are heading in the right direction. And the same can be said regarding our strategy: to opt for a careful attitude. That does good. I'm particularly delighted for our squad that has once again succeeded in professionally preparing our car for the nearly 700 kilometres we had to cover during today's stage.”

The KWIKPOWER Mercedes Unimog also advanced by quite a few positions...

Last edited by Wolfgang; 01-04-2006 at 10:10 PM.
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Old 01-08-2006, 01:03 PM
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Dakar 2006

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Old 01-08-2006, 01:59 PM
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Great Stuff, Wolfgang!
...and thanks for the reminder to go and check the latest and the standings.

(man, I love the Unimog!).....

I may just have to furnish a little 'sponsorship' to Team ORC and have them build something special for me!

Last edited by ClayJ; 01-08-2006 at 03:01 PM.
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Old 01-11-2006, 10:59 PM
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Originally Posted by ClayJ
(man, I love the Unimog!).....

Here's the Kwikpower U400 which saved them once again after an accident this morning. They convoyed all night and just reached the camp in time for the start on the next leg today.

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Old 01-13-2006, 01:42 PM
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Jpe Strugo and Yves Ferri with their production ML 430 finished todays stage through the mountains in a very good 25th position overall, and among the leaders in the T2 production class. Two more days to go. Tomorrow they'll encounter the very difficult camel grass section where they had to withdraw last year... Let's hope for the best.
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Old 01-14-2006, 09:59 AM
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They did it! Finished the last difficult stage are are on 23rd place overall now and third in the T2 mass produced production class. From 174 cars at the start fewer than 70 survived all the way to Dakar - one of the toughest races in recent memory!
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Old 01-14-2006, 10:06 AM
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Good Stuff Wolfgang!
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Old 05-26-2006, 06:37 PM
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Here's a video message from Ellen Lohr about the upcoming Dakar 2007:

http://www.navigon.com/site/ellenloh...9012F9B9B7E0BC
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Old 09-05-2008, 01:06 PM
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Recently came across these pics from the Dakar 2007:







More:

http://www.rallyeraidconcept.com/
http://www.whnet.com/4x4/trips.html
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