The reigning World Rallycross Champion and DTM driver Mattias Ekström is relying on a new MAN TGX D38 for the race logistics of his RX team, EKS. Ekström personally picked up the fully-equipped 18.580 at the MAN Truck Forum in Munich.
The latest vehicle type in Mattias Ekström’s World Rallycross Championship Team is not quite as low-slung and close to the action as the reigning champion’s Audi S1 EKS RX Quattro. Nevertheless, it earned an enthusiastic thumbs-up from him at the official pick-up from the MAN Truck Forum in Munich. That comes as no surprise. After all, the polar-white MAN TGX semi-trailer tractor, along with its 580hp-strong D38 straight-six engine, embody top performance at maximum efficiency. This combination should appeal to both sides of Ekström, as competitive racing driver as well as efficient team owner.
The D38 is a powerful Euro 6 engine with a displacement of 15.2 litres and a full torque value of 2,900 newton metres. The two-stage turbocharging already supplies 930 revolutions per minute. The MAN TipMatic twelve-speed gearbox, ideally fine-tuned for the D38, takes this power directly onto the asphalt. The EKS TGX really gets moving economically with the EfficientCruise GPS-supported cruise control system, which registers the topographical driving route up to three kilometres in advance and adjusts accordingly. Another technical feature adding to the new 18.580’s appeal as a team member is the innovative EfficientRoll function, which makes it possible to control rolling movement intelligently and proactively via GPS, minimising consumption even further.
Alongside performance and efficiency, the TGX also offers the EKS Team’s truckers a highly comfortable work place with its XXL long-haul cab. Its facilities include an elegant interior in an Alcantara/leather combination, comfortable heated seats for driver and co-driver, plus the MAN professional media package with the MMT advanced system including truck navigation and a hands-free system for two mobile phones. The chassis with full air suspension will ensure pleasant driving comfort on the long trips to the national and international RX racing circuits.
Ekström became champion of the DTM (German Touring Car Masters) twice with Audi and has entered the FIA World Rallycross Championship in parallel with the team that he founded, EKS, since 2014. This brought the 39-year-old Swede back to his motorsport roots. He grew up with the RX series; his father Bengt Ekström drove in the European Rallycross Championship in the 1980s and 90s. In 2016, Mattias Ekström and EKS confidently secured the titles of both the drivers’ and teams’ world championships.
MAN Truck & Bus is one of their first sponsoring partners and has supported EKS’ race logistics since 2014. The new tractor unit, together with its predecessors, will be used to transport the Audi racing vehicles, technical equipment, material and the mobile workshop. Handing over the MAN TGX 18.580, MAN Truck & Bus extended its motorsport partnership with EKS for another two years until the end of 2018.