World premiere at the 2015 Auto Shanghai show
A Range Rover always is a bit of a show-off, whether in the parking bay at the Table Mountain Cable Car, up Sani Pass, or on the pavements (or in the streets) of Sandton!
STARTECH, a BRABUS Group company, adds yet another talent as an exclusive transport specialist to the many virtues of the British all-wheel-drive car: the STARTECH Pickup based on the latest Range Rover celebrates its world premiere at the 2015 Auto Shanghai show.
It is doubtful that the car will be available in South Africa, as LRSA sticks to production versions only, but who knows – maybe one of the many executive sports car importers might consider importing it for you as it is available in right-hand drive.
But maybe not for weekend 4×4 excursions…
The exclusive multi-purpose super car is powered by a five-liter eight-cylinder supercharged engine rated at 387 kW / 526 hp. It pushes the STARTECH Pickup from rest to 100 km/h in just 5.3 seconds. Top speed is limited electronically to 250 km/h.
The refined transport specialist impresses with its versatility and superior performance. But what’s more: the STARTECH REFINEMENT WIDEBODY bodywork conversion with a host of genuine carbon-fiber highlights allows installing 23-inch forged wheels. The interior, which was likewise given a new look in the company upholstery shop, sparkles with a mix of the finest leather, Alcantara and carbon-fiber elements precisely color-coordinated with the exterior.
The Range Rover is converted into one of the world’s most exclusive pickups following the best coach building tradition that was once common for English luxury cars in particular. The STARTECH engineers and constructors employed state-of-the-art technology to develop the conversion from a five-door car to a classy transport specialist with pickup bed. This not only ensures lines that are visually integrated into the original vehicle design in an equally striking and harmonious fashion, but also that the body has the same torsional rigidity as the base car.
The elaborate nature of the STARTECH body conversion is demonstrated by the mere fact that the transformation from an off-roader to a pickup required designing and manufacturing no less than 100 bodywork components from aluminum, carbon fiber and steel.
The pickup offers five comfortable seats and is thus just as spacious as the original vehicle. The STARTECH sheet metal specialists integrated a new rear bulkhead with heated tinted rear window behind the individual seats in the back. The wall to the pickup bed is invisibly welded to the new shorter roof skin, which like on the production seems to be floating on air, and to the also newly developed C-pillars. Despite the shortened roof, the panoramic sunroof is fully retained.
The plastic-lined pickup bed is almost square and with the tailgate closed offers a loading length of 110 centimeters. When the tailgate is opened, either by remote control or by a push of a button in the cockpit, another 60 centimeters are available for carrying cargo. Consequently, the STARTECH Pickup offers plenty of space for golf or other recreational equipment. Especially customers from the Arab region like to use the pickup bed also for transporting a securely fastened cage that holds their falcons for the hunt.
In hallmark STARTECH fashion this pickup conversion also sports a host of detail solutions. For example, the carbon-fiber side trim that provides the transition from the C-pillars to the tailgate is more than just visual decoration: in conjunction with the STARTECH roof spoiler adapted specifically to the new shape of the roof they also reduce turbulence created by the relative wind at high speeds. This design feature also plays a role in the safe transport of the particular cargo. The billet aluminum elements in the tailgate likewise demonstrate a great love of detail: they too are not just decoration, but are also designed to help securely strap down the cargo.
The STARTECH bodywork conversion is executed to OEM quality standards and is independently safety-certified. The one-of-a-kind STARTECH warranty of three years, up to 100,000 kilometers (see STARTECH Warranty Terms and Conditions, updated June 2013) vouches for the outstanding quality of the conversion work.
Incidentally, the STARTECH Pickup concept goes beyond merely offering functional and visual advantages: in many countries of the world luxury cars such as the Range Rover are subject to high import duties and luxury taxes. The conversion to a pickup means that the STARTECH multi-utility vehicle meets the prerequisites to be registered as a commercial vehicle in many countries, which often eliminates these fees when the vehicle is imported. As a result, despite the elaborate conversion, the exclusive STARTECH Pickup may be cheaper for owners in such states than a production luxury SUV.
The all-wheel-drive car with pickup bed is visually even more extravagant in the STARTECH WIDEBODY version, which was designed for the current Range Rover with short or long wheelbase. All components of this aerodynamic-enhancement package are made in OEM quality from PUR-R-Rim to ensure a perfect fit. For adding markedly sporty highlights, the STARTECH REFINEMENT program offers a host of additional carbon-fiber elements, which in particular on the fire-engine red show car for the 2015 Auto Shanghai show perfectly complement the components of the pickup conversion manufactured from the same materials.
The face of the STARTECH Pickup is even more striking thanks to the front fender flares and the STARTECH WIDEBODY front bumper that replaces the production bumper in its entirety. This impression is further boosted by the integrated LED daytime running lights or LED side markers and the smallest LED front fog lamps currently available on the market. The integrated front spoiler and the side air deflectors reduce aerodynamic lift on the front axle at high speeds and consequently improve handling stability. More markedly sporty highlights are added by the radiator grille and clear-coated carbon-fiber trim on the hood.
The side view is dominated by the typical pickup lines at the rear and by the curved STARTECH front and rear fender flares, which are harmoniously tied together by door components that extend all the way to the rocker panels. Carbon-fiber trim for the stylized gills on the front doors and the side mirrors as well as carbon-fiber inserts for the door trim and the stylized rear air intakes lend the four-door car a touch of motor racing flair.
To match the powerful appearance of the STARTECH Pickup, the 80-mm wider fenders offer room for the largest and moreover technologically outstanding STARTECH wheels: as a contrast to the red paintwork, the STARTECH Monostar S forged wheels of size 11Jx23 were painted black. These wheels feature an unusual design with dimensionally offset cross-spokes that extend all the way to the outer edge of the wheel flange and are fitted with high-performance tires of size 305/30 R 23. The high-tech forging technology used for the production of these wheels is just as special and sophisticated. It achieves extremely high strength despite the enormous weight savings over a cast wheel of identical size.
The STARTECH suspension module for the standard air suspension allows lowering the ride height of the pickup by 30 millimeters at the push of a button in the cockpit when driving on paved roads. This makes the all-wheel-drive car even sportier and safer to drive. For comfortable ingress and egress or for operating in terrain, the ride height of the vehicle can be set to the production level.
The rear end of the vehicle is redefined visually not only by the conversion to a pickup bed: the standard bumper is replaced in its entirety with a complete STARTECH rear bumper. The diffuser is made from clear-coated carbon fiber to match the bodywork concept. This aerodynamic-enhancement component accommodates the dual tailpipes of the STARTECH high-performance exhaust system with hallmark STARTECH styling. The exhaust system features active electronic control of the V8’s exhaust note from the cockpit ranging from decidedly sporty to subtle. What’s more: the sophisticated exhaust-gas routing achieves an additional increase in power output by 12 kW / 16 hp.
The interior of the pickup too was elaborately refined the STARTECH way: dashboard, seats and door panels were covered with fine and especially breathable black leather in the STARTECH upholstery shop. Red stitching precisely color-coordinated with the exterior and diamond-shaped quilting of various parts give it an especially exclusive design. The headliner is made from black Alcantara. Carbon-fiber applications with the same surface structure as the aerodynamic-enhancement components continue the bodywork design in the interior.
It goes without saying that the STARTECH Pickup is also offered with all other available Range Rover engines and in any color or interior variant.