Land Rover and M-Sport Ltd have teamed up to introduce the Pirelli British Rally Championship (PBRC) Freelander spectator and safety control vehicle.
Land Rover’s best-seller will star at each of this year’s PBRC events with ex-Scottish rally champion David Gillanders at the wheel. The car will open each special stage with a demonstration drive and a spectator safety inspection, starting with the Pirelli International Rally in Gateshead on 25 April.
This year’s seven PBRC events will see the UK’s most popular 4x4 tackle terrains ranging from the rigours of the Scottish Highlands to the world famous high-speed Manx International Rally on the Isle of Man. The car is a standard Freelander V6 with just a roll-cage, up-rated suspension system and brake pads to distinguish it from the cars on Land Rover dealers’ forecourts.
During a trial session at Land Rover’s proving ground in Warwickshire, David Gillanders said: "This is the most capable Freelander in the world. It can take everything thrown at it and more, but it also has a very serious purpose in the PBRC – to ensure the safety of all spectators throughout the Championship."
Gillanders isn’t the only part of the team with real rally pedigree – the Freelander served as Colin McRae’s reconnaissance car for the Safari Rally during the 2001 World Rally Championship.
The vehicle has only a 15-minutes head start on the competition cars, highlighting the need for high performance and the rallying capabilities that the subtle modifications afford the Freelander. All PBRC events take place in specifically designated rally locations, with care taken to protect the surrounding environment.
PBRC manager, Mark Taylor concluded: "Safety is of paramount importance in rallying these days, and having this purpose-built Freelander at our disposal for spectator and safety control is of immense benefit to the Championship."
This is a 17-year+ news article, from our Land Rover archive, which dates back to the year 2000.
If in doubt check with your local Land Rover dealer as car prices and technical data will have changed since 2003.
Although our car news is published in good faith, we cannot guarantee it to be error free or complete or up-to-date.
Land Rover Images may not be UK specification cars. Colours and exterior and/or interior elements may differ from actual models.
The car news and images remain the copyright of the rights holder and may not be used without their consent.