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Range Rover Sport sets desert crossing record

Tue, 05 Nov 2013 00:00:00 -0800

A RANGE Rover Sport has set a new record for the fastest crossing of one of the harshest desert environments on Earth.

The new off-roader, which was standard apart from an additional protection plate under the chassis, crossed the Empty Quarter in the Middle East between Wadi Adda Wasir in Saudi Arabia and the border of the United Arab Emirates in 10 hours and 22 minutes at an average speed of 51.87mph.

Covering 530 miles en route to the new record, the Range Rover Sport was driven by veteran Dakar rally expert Moi Torrallardona, a man who understands everything there is to know about driving large off-road vehicles in demanding desert conditions.

Land Rover used a 5.0-litre supercharged model for the challenge, which will be the most relevant model for the surrounding Middle-Eastern sales markets. The same model also set a new class record at the Pikes Peak hill-climb event earlier in the year.

Spaniard Torrallardona said: “The challenge of the desert is like nothing else, it is a brutal, unforgiving and sometimes deadly environment. Desert driving requires a unique combination of speed, finesse and technical skill.

“It is crucial that you tackle the dunes with precision. Knowing the right time to go full throttle, and the right time to slow down, takes experience and clear judgement.

“This unique way of driving requires a vehicle which has the same skillset – it must be both incredibly fast but also agile, responsive and well planted. The Range Rover Sport is exactly that.”

By Press Association reporter