Ever been fed up stuck in traffic on the M40 and longingly stared at the adjacent fields wishing you could just cut across some Banbury countryside to save time? We’re not saying that was part of the thinking behind Prodrive’s new Hunter all-terrain vehicle, but it would certainly do that job for you.
Based on the template of the BRX Hunter T1+ that Sébastien Loeb so ably handled during this year’s Dakar Rally, the slightly toned-down road-going equivalent offers much of the off-road ability of its more hardcore sibling, just with a boot capable of carrying a big weekly shop thrown in.
Plus, it’s actually faster and more powerful than the race version. It still boasts the same Byzantine tubular spaceframe chassis as the Dakar car, but its 3.6-litre bi-turbo Ford V6 up front can now push out 600bhp as opposed to the racer’s regulated 400bhp.
It also has the same monstrous suspension and 37-inch tyres but the road set-up allows for a lot more travel – speed bumps, what speed bumps? Plus it even has creature comforts like air conditioning and a reversing camera. Obviously a few of the more ‘racey’ bits have had to be dropped, such as the hardcore interior and single-stick sequential gearshift (you’ll get flappy paddles with yours…) but the spirit of the Dakar has never been so well translated to a road machine.
The downside is that Prodrive will only build 20, and each one costs £1.5m. Oh, and it has a 500-litre fuel tank as standard, so it’ll soon cost just as much to fill up as it will to buy…