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2014 Range Rover Sport to Attempt Fastest Trek Across Empty Quarter

Last updated Monday, November 4, 2013 09:00 ET

Redesigned SUV Will Tackle Treacherous Desert Terrain in Middle East

Peabody, USA, 11/04/2013 / SubmitMyPR /

As the largest sand desert in the world, the Empty Quarter is characterized by dunes that swell as high as 850 feet and temperatures that can surpass 120 degrees. Those conditions won't stop Land Rover from attempting to drive the redesigned 2014 Range Rover Sport across the treacherous Middle East desert in record time this week, as the brand has total confidence in the off-road capability of its newest SUV.

With experienced Spanish off-road driver Moi Torrallardona behind the wheel, a production-spec 2014 Range Rover Sport will take off at dawn from Wadi Adda Wasir, Saudi Arabia, and travel 622 miles across the Empty Quarter before its expected arrival at the United Arab Emirates border around dusk. With an all-new aluminum body structure that is about 800 pounds lighter than its predecessor, the new Range Rover Sport is the fastest, most agile and most responsive Land Rover ever, and those claims will be put to the test on extreme terrain that is usually reserved for specialist sand vehicles.

"The Range Rover Sport's lighter unibody frame allows the SUV to be not only faster and more fuel efficient but also just as capable as past models due to the strict use of high-strength aluminum," said Dave Edwards, general manager of Land Rover Peabody, a Greater Boston Range Rover dealer. "The new chassis also connects to a next-gen four-corner air suspension, giving the Range Rover Sport extra maneuverability for traversing the huge sand dunes in the Empty Quarter."

Receiving a new +1.4-inch intermediate setting, the updated four-corner air suspension can now engage off-road mode at much higher speeds, a capability that could come in handy during the record attempt. While professional off-roaders like Torrallardona have their own approach to challenging terrain, the Range Rover Sport's next-generation Terrain Response 2 system features an Auto mode for less experienced drivers that tailors operation of the engine, transmission, differentials and chassis for surfaces like snow, sand, rocks and muddy ruts.

All 2014 Range Rover Sport models come with plenty of output to back up their off-road prowess. The standard engine is a 3.0-liter V6 that produces 340 horsepower, while an available 510-horsepower 5.0-liter supercharged V8 unit enables the vehicle to sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 5 seconds flat. Both powerplants are paired to a smooth-shifting and fuel-efficient ZF eight-speed automatic transmission.

"Land Rover has pulled off a very difficult task in making the Range Rover Sport significantly more efficient while improving its ride both on- and off-road," added Edwards. "It may simply look like a sleeker version of past generations on the outside, but underneath, the 2014 Range Rover Sport is a completely new blueprint for what a modern go-anywhere SUV should be."

About Land Rover Peabody
Land Rover Peabody is home to a remarkable group of off-road enthusiasts who know exactly what their customers expect in Land Rover sales and service. They’re proud to offer the latest Land Rover models, as well as unparalleled Land Rover service and OEM parts, and they invite new customers to take a test-drive on their unique demonstration course to experience Land Rover performance firsthand. Browse their selection online at www.roverpeabody.com, visit the showroom at 247 Newbury St. in Peabody, Massachusetts, like them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/landroverpeabody or call them at 888-472-4137.