Range Rover Sport sets standard SUV Pikes Peak record

Posted on Jun 10, 2013 by
The Range Rover Sport was driven on the record run by American competition and stunt driver Paul Dallenbach

The was driven on the record run by American competition and stunt driver Paul Dallenbach

The all-new Range Rover Sport has established a record for a production-standard Sport Utility Vehicle on the Pikes Pike International Hill Climb course. The car also broke the long standing record for any kind of production-standard vehicle on the course, venue of the spectacular annual competition known as ‘The Race To the Clouds’.

The Range Rover Sport covered 12.42-mile asphalt course in just 12 minutes 35.61 seconds at an average speed of 59.17 mph (95.23 km/h) on a snaking road that clings to the edge of the mountain

with precipitous drops on one side and unyielding rock faces on the other.

The Pikes Peak course goes through 156 corners as it ascends beyond the treeline from 9,390 feet (2,860m) above sea level to 14,110 feet (4,300m). At that altitude the air contains only 58% of the oxygen it does at sea level, diminishing engine performance and blunting human physical and mental performance.

The Pikes Peak Hill Climb course has 156 corners and  ascends  from 9,390 feet above sea level to 14,110 feet.

The Pikes Peak Hill Climb course has 156 corners and ascends from 9,390 feet above sea level to 14,110 feet.

The new record was set by a Range Rover Sport with a 510PS 5.0-litre supercharged petrol V8 engine, the vehicle altered from production specification only in the fitment of a roll cage and harness seatbelts to meet racing safety requirements.

The Range Rover Sport was driven on the record run, by American competition and stunt driver Paul Dallenbach. Best known as a Pikes Peak specialist, Dallenbach, 45 years old, from Basalt in Colorado, has won his division at the Hill Climb six times and won the event outright three times.

Dallenbach said: “There’s no margin for error at Pikes Pike – you only need to misjudge one of those 156 turns and you’re into the trees or over the edge of the mountain. To take on this place the way I did today, you need complete confidence in your vehicle, and the Range Rover Sport sure gave me that – it’s fast, responsive and agile. I was able to place the car exactly where I wanted it on the road to keep to the optimum high-speed lines through corners. This is a hugely capable vehicle and I’m proud to have been part of demonstrating that by setting a new Pikes Peak record.”

The Pikes Peak record run is the first of a series of global driving challenges to be taken-on by the all-new Range Rover Sport, pushing the vehicle to new limits in a series of the most punishing drives to be found on earth.

The current outright course record is 9 minutes 46.164 seconds, set by Rhys Millen last year in the Time Attack division in a production-based but radically modified Hyundai Genesis Coupe.

The all-new Range Rover has set a Pikes Peak Hill Climb record for a production SUV, albeit some way short of the overall record.

The all-new Range Rover has set a Pikes Peak Hill Climb record for a production SUV, albeit some way short of the overall record.

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