Spain's Carlos Sainz —a two-time world rally champion and 2010 winner at the Dakar— won the sixth stage —from Arequipa (Peru) to La Paz— ahead of 13-time champion Stephane Peterhansel, one of his Peugeot teammates.
Sainz, 55, clocked 2hr 53min 30sec for the 313km timed run of the grueling stage, 4min 06sec ahead of Peterhansel who retains the overall lead.
He was also 5min 05sec in front of 2011 and 2015 Dakar champion Nasser Al-Attiyah in a Toyota.
French rider Antoine Meo —on a KTM— claimed the motorcycle honors.
Argentina's Kevin Benavides —on a Honda— ended second, 30 seconds behind, but went to the top of overall standings.
Australia's Toby Price was third on the stage.
Benavides has a 1min 57sec lead over French Yamaha rider Adrien van Beveren in the overall standings.
Friday will be a rest day in La Paz.