Land Rover G4 Challenge Freelander Makes Its North American Debut At SEMA
LAS VEGAS, Nov. 5, 2002; When competitors embark on the first stage of the Land Rover G4 Challenge in March 2003, their primary mode of transportation -- and their home-away-from home -- will be a Tangiers Orange Land Rover G4 Challenge Freelander. But before competitors get their hands on the vehicle, the thousands of people attending the Specialty Equipment Marketing Association (SEMA) Expo in Las Vegas will get a "sneak peak" at the G4 Challenge Freelander as part of the Ford Motor Company display. The SEMA show is the world's largest trade event dedicated solely to aftermarket equipment and vehicle modifications.
Land Rover G4 Challenge Freelanders are all built on the standard Freelander production line and have the same mechanical systems as the vehicles going to customers. However, they have been fitted with a variety of specialized equipment to make them ready for the Land Rover G4 Challenge.
Each Land Rover G4 Challenge Freelander is equipped with:
Warn roof-mounted auxiliary lamps. Front and rear winch receivers. Warn winches. Safety Devices custom roof rack, rear ladder and platform. Garmin GPS navigation modules. Pietzle rappelling gear. Land Rover Vehicle Kit accessories, including brush bars, Safari roof racks, kayak and mountain-bike carriers and first aid kits. Front and rear aluminum skidplates. Front and rear tow points with heavy-duty recovery rings. Air-intake system snorkel. In addition to this specialty equipment, some of the standard Freelander features that will be put to the test by G4 Challenge competitors include: * 2.5-litre, 174-hp aluminum-alloy V6 engine with 177 lb-ft of torque. * Five-speed electronically controlled automatic transmission with CommandShift(TM) sport/manual operation. * Land Rover permanent all-wheel drive. * Center Viscous Coupling Unit (VCU) and Intermediate Reduction Drive. * Four-wheel Electronic Traction Control (4ETC). * Four channel, all-terrain anti-lock brakes. * Land Rover's patented Hill Descent Control (HDC).
The Land Rover G4 Challenge is an adventure competition that pits individual competitors from 16 nations against each other in a myriad of challenges -- including on- and off-road driving in Land Rover vehicles, kayaking, skiing, snow boarding, climbing, rappelling and more. The competition will last five weeks and cover more than 4,000 miles. The G4 name comes from the global aspect of the competition -- the four stages will take place in four different seasons, on three continents, in four different time zones. All four 4x4 Land Rover models will be employed during the event.
"For more than 50 years, Land Rover vehicles have been the backbone of adventures all over the world," says Bob Dover, Chief Operating Officer, Aston Martin Jaguar Land Rover. "The Land Rover G4 Challenge will add another exciting chapter to our rich history of adventures. Best of all, the G4 Challenge epitomizes the spirit of Land Rover.
The competition was designed to reward teamwork, ingenuity, strategic thinking, athleticism and, most of all, a positive, can-do attitude. While in the end there can be only one winner, in a sense, all 16 competitors will win simply by finishing this grueling event."
The first stage, using G4 Challenge Freelanders, will begin in New York City and run from the Northeastern U.S. to Canada. The second stage, using G4 Challenge Defender, will cover the wilds of South Africa (Defender is not available in the U.S.). The third stage will be in Australia using Range Rovers, while the fourth will return to the U.S., this time in the West using Discovery vehicles. Each stage of the competition will encompass both major urban centers and remote rural areas.
The four different stages will test the competitors' physical capability and mental alacrity as they are called on to navigate a wide variety of terrain (by whatever means they deem most appropriate) in their quest to reach the various scoring stations -- electronic location markers with preset point values. While every one of the sixteen competitors will enjoy an enormous sense of personal pride and accomplishment upon finishing the event, just one will win the grand prize -- a 2003 Range Rover worth $71,200.
Land Rover North America, Inc., established in 1986, imports and distributes Range Rover, Discovery and Freelander vehicles manufactured for sale in the U.S. by Land Rover in Solihull, England.
Land Rover's worldwide operations are wholly owned by Ford Motor Company, Dearborn, Michigan.
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My next Ford.....