Land Rover took to Germany's legendary Nürburgring to test its incoming Range Rover Sport SVR, and the model smashed the lap record for a production SUV in the process.
The model charged around the demanding 12.9-mile circuit in eight minutes and 14 seconds to set a new best time - and demonstrate the high performance capabilities of the brand's luxury off-roaders. The rapid model is yet another stunning conception from Jaguar Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations (SVO) division, which specialises in 'hot' versions of each manufacturer's most popular models.
To create the potent SVR, the SVO team tuned the Range Rover Sport's muscular 5.0-litre supercharged V8 engine to give 543bhp – a 40bhp increase. With this extra pull, the sprint from standing to 60mph now takes less than five seconds, and a twin-speed transfer case gives a choice of low or high gear ratios. There's been no compromise on all-terrain capabilities however, as a wading depth of 850mm remains.
The Nürburgring is the perfect location for carmakers to test their latest rapid creations, as explained by Mike Cross, Land Rover's chief engineer:
“The Nürburgring is a benchmark for vehicle development and testing, and cars become stronger, more durable and faster over its 13 miles and 70-plus corners.
“We wanted to see whether an SUV could behave like a performance car in this challenging environment."
The Range Rover Sport SVR is set to arrive in showrooms next year, followed by a hot Evoque, also from the SVO team. To be among the first to test drive both, enquire with Lookers Land Rover across London, Essex and Hertfordshire on launch.