It was Peterhansel's third car victory in a MINI with Al Attiyah second and last year's winner Carlos Sainz of Spain winning the final stage to round out a star-studded podium.
Poland's Jakub Przygoński finished fourth, South African Giniel De Villiers eighth and Frenchman Cyril Despres 10th after the 8,000-kilometre odyssey.
Salute the champion
Peterhansel also now stands alone as the biggest winner in a single category with eight car wins after Monsieur Dakar had previously shared that record with Vladimir Chagin, winner of seven truck titles.
After an 8,000-kilometre odyssey over the sand dunes of Saudi there has been a stunning end to the Dakar Rally 2021 as it is time to salute Monsieur Dakar!
"It was a really tough one this year and there's always more pressure when you're the leader for so long. We had everything to lose, but we did a really precise race, almost perfect," said Peterhansel.
"It's working really well inside the cockpit, it's a good feeling to have Edouard (Boulanger) sit next to me. This was his first Dakar in a top car and he did a really excellent job," added Peterhansel.
Nine-time World Rally Championship winner Sebastien Loeb and co-driver Daniel Elena were forced to retire from the rally on stage eight.
As the dust has settled at the Dakar Rally 2021, myKhel.com salutes all those who made this latest edition truly memorable.