Ben Saunders

4x4, News

Range Rover Sport SVR tackles frozen Silverstone

Land Rover has tested a Rover Sport SVR on a frozen Silverstone replica track, near the Arctic Circle.

Land Rover Ambassador and polar explorer, Ben Saunders swapped his snowshoes for winter tyres to put the Sport SVR through its paces at a unique yet familiar test track. The full-scale replica of the Silverstone Grand Prix Circuit was carved in the snow on Lake Udjaur. With instruction from former rally champion, Finland's Minna Sillankorva, Saunders tackled driving on ice behind the wheel of Land Rover's performance flagship, the 550PS V8 Range Rover Sport, the most powerful Land Rover to date, which is capable of accelerating from 0-60mph in 4.5 seconds.

Ben Saunders, who has led expeditions to both the North and South Poles, said: "Obviously, I had an amazing day. It was my first time driving on ice and the most fun I've had on four-wheels. The performance of the Range Rover Sport SVR is simply breathtaking and its poise in the corners was astounding given the slippery conditions."

Features to enhance all-terrain performance, such as Land Rover's advanced Terrain Response 2 system, and permanent four-wheel drive with a two-speed transfer case, and a 50/50 percent torque split front-to-rear helped the polar explorer keep his Range Rover Sport SVR on track.

'Optimum traction' is further maintained with the aid of an electronically controlled multi-plate clutch in the centre differential, as well as the Torque Vectoring by Braking system which uses the SVR's brakes to constantly balance the distribution of engine torque between all four wheels during cornering. This system monitors the vehicle via the Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) module as it accelerates through a corner, where sensors detect the onset of understeer.

Mike Cross, Chief Engineer Vehicle Integrity, said: "We pride ourselves on the all-terrain capability and composure of our vehicles, putting them through intensive hot and cold climate testing. The Range Rover Sport SVR is the most dynamic model we've ever produced and combining these qualities showcases the unique talents and expertise of our dedicated engineers."