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Range Rover Hybrid on a 'Silk Trail' from UK to Mumbai

How do you test a Range Rover Hybrid? Take it on a 16,000km drive of course! At least according to Land Rover, who will be giving its final engineering sign-off to the latest Rangie, only after the grueling endurance expedition.

The route selected for this is the legendary Silk Trail, a historical network of interlinking trade routes which connected East, South and Western Asia with the Mediterranean and European world. Extending 6,437km, the Silk Trail gets its name from the lucrative Chinese silk trade which was carried out along its length and became a significant factor in the development of the civilisations in Asia and Europe from 206BC until the late 14th Century.

Range Rover Hybrid is set to prove itself as the world’s most capable hybrid by bee-lining from the home of Land Rover in Solihull, UK on August 22, traveling overland for more than seven weeks through Europe, Russia and Asia to our city of Mumbai – arriving on October 15.

Silk Trail 2013 Expedition Leader, Dougie Dale said “We are delighted with progress so far, but the European leg is the easy part with good road networks – this has allowed us to use the Hybrid system to great effect predominantly in urban areas. As the expedition heads towards Eastern Europe and beyond over the next week, we expect the terrain to toughen and we will really start to use the Range Rover Hybrid’s uncompromised capability.”

The Silk Trail expedition is divided into 10 stages and is scheduled to visit France, Belgium, Germany, Poland, Ukraine, Russia, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, China, Nepal and India.  The Range Rover Hybrids are being driven by teams of Land Rover development engineers and specially invited media from 10 countries in Europe and other nations along the route.

12 countries, 53 days and 16,000km. Piece of cake for the Rangie Hybrid, TopGearers? Tell us in the comments below.


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