The SUV is proving its worth as the most powerful Range Rover in history

Remember when the Range Rover Sport SVR managed to climb up Heaven’s Gate in Tianmen, China? Well, it looks like the SUV’s adventures in the Chinese locale isn’t done. Not content with its first achievement, the most powerful Range Rover in history had a go at tackling the infamous road’s 99 twists and turns. The goal was to beat the current record, which is held by the Ferrari 458 Italia after posting a time of 10:31 earlier this decade. So did the Range Rover Sport SVR do it? Let’s just say that you’ll be surprised by the result.

To make the SUV’s feat more impressive, it actually managed to drive around the length of the road at an average speed of 42.8 mph

We’ll give away the ending and tell you that the Range Rover Sport SVR not only beat the Ferrari 458 Italia’s record, it absolutely obliterated it. Unofficially, the Range Rover Sport SVR, with Panasonic Jaguar Racing driver Ho-Pin Tung behind the wheel, clocked in a time of 9:51. You don’t need to be a genius in math to figure out that the Range Rover Sport SVR posted a lap time that’s 40 seconds faster than the time posted by the 458 Italia. ‘Incredible’ isn’t even the proper word to describe it. What the Range Rover Sport SVR did is beyond words.

To make the SUV’s feat more impressive, it actually managed to drive around the length of the road at an average speed of 42.8 mph, or roughly 68.8 kmh, by comparison. It may not sound like much, but imagine tackling the 99-turn Tianmen Road at speeds that are slightly over the speed limit of most American highways. Pretty scary, right? The man behind the wheel of the SUV thought so.

Video of the Day: Did the Range Rover Sport Just Take the Tianmen Road Record from the Ferarri 458 Italia? Exterior
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The Range Rover Sport SVR posted a lap time that’s 40 seconds faster than the time posted by the 458 Italia

"I am used to the high speeds of racing, but this was even more demanding,” Tung said. “Maintaining concentration was the biggest challenge, as the road twists and turns constantly with huge drop-offs to the side. The consequences of getting it wrong would have been really serious, so I focused on establishing a rhythm. The Range Rover Sport SVR made this easy – it may be an SUV, but it has the performance and agility of a supercar and can take you to places a supercar can only dream of."

The Range Rover Sport SVR’s new achievement is another testament to its abilities. We already know that it’s the most powerful Range Rover in history. Land Rover made sure of that with its constant reminders that the SUV packs 567 horsepower out of its supercharged V-8 engine. But it’s become more than just that, too. The SUV has become a crowning achievement for Land Rover. In a lot of ways, Tung is right. The Range Rover Sport SVR is a supercar in SUV clothing.

References

2015 Land Rover Range Rover Sport SVR High Resolution Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2018 Land Rover Range Rover Sport SVR.

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Land Rover’s enhanced performance SUV sets new benchmark on Tianmen Road, China

New performance SUV beats supercar record for tackling the 99 turns of the world-famous Tianmen Road in China
575PS Range Rover Sport SVR features enhanced V8 supercharged engine, delivering 0-100km/h in 4.5 seconds (0-60mph in 4.3 seconds)
Performance flagship completed epic drive in 9 minutes 51 seconds, beating benchmark of 10 minutes 31 seconds set by a Ferrari 458 Italia
Standard production SVR model was piloted by Le Mans class-winner and Panasonic Jaguar Racing reserve and test driver Ho-Pin Tung
Watch the record-breaking drive here: https://youtu.be/3MrdU6XbJok

Hunan Province, China, 13 March 2018 – An SUV is not meant to outperform a supercar, but that’s exactly what happened when the new Range Rover Sport SVR took on a fearsome mountain road in China.

Land Rover’s performance SUV, driven by Panasonic Jaguar Racing driver Ho-Pin Tung, has smashed the record for negotiating the 99 corners of the famous Tianmen Road.

The standard production Range Rover Sport SVR set a new unofficial record of 9 minutes 51 seconds for the 11.3km ascent at an average speed of 68.8km/h (42.8mph), beating the previous best of 10 minutes 31 seconds – set by a Ferrari 458 Italia supercar in 2016.

With 575PS available from its enhanced V8 supercharged engine, the new Range Rover Sport SVR is the fastest ever Land Rover and can accelerate from 0-100km/h in 4.5 seconds (0-60mph in only 4.3 seconds) with a top speed of 280km/h (174mph). The new performance flagship features bold design revisions and increased use of lightweight materials to enhance performance, handling and agility.

Coupled with changes to the chassis, the new SVR delivers more dynamic responses without compromising traditional Range Rover comfort. The engineers at SVO focused on controlling pitch under heavy acceleration and braking, and changes to the damping hardware have improved turn-in, mid-corner grip and body control.

Panasonic Jaguar Racing’s Ho-Pin Tung said: “I am used to the high speeds of racing but these 99 turns were something unique. Maintaining concentration was the biggest challenge as the road twists and turns constantly, with huge drop-offs to the side. The consequences of getting it wrong would have been really serious so I focused on establishing a rhythm and the Range Rover Sport SVR made this easy – it may be an SUV but it has the performance and agility of a supercar and can take you to places a supercar can only dream of.”

The optional exposed carbon fibre bonnet is one of the distinctive innovations introduced by the experts at Special Vehicle Operations and features a pair of large air vents to underline its performance potential. A revised front bumper provides enhanced brake and engine cooling while the 5.0-litre V8 supercharged engine produces 700Nm of torque.

Inside, new lightweight SVR Performance seats provide superior support and traditional Range Rover luxury with Windsor leather, an embossed SVR logo and a choice of four colour combinations.

The record-breaking ascent is the latest challenge completed by the Range Rover Sport after the PHEV model made the dizzying climb to the iconic Heaven’s Gate natural rock arch at the road’s summit last month. The PHEV made its debut in a race against two-time open-water swimming world champion Keri-anne Payne and endurance athlete Ross Edgley in Devon, UK.

The Range Rover Sport SVR is priced from £99,680. To watch the record-breaking run and listen to the Range Rover Sport’s distinctive V8 soundtrack, courtesy of its intelligent two-stage active exhaust system, click here: https://youtu.be/3MrdU6XbJok

ENDS

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