Prodrive will show off the first road-going version of its latest Bahraini-backed Dakar Rally car, the BRX Hunter T1+, at London's Salon Privé next Thursday (21 April).
The first road car, built for Bahrain’s Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, spearheads a batch of 25 road-going T1s that will be produced at Prodrive’s Banbury HQ over the next two years, each priced from £1.25 million before local taxes. The Hunter's Salon Privé debut comes after Autocar took the first completed car for an exclusive test drive around the streets of Central Lonon - which you can read about here.
Prodrive chairman David Richards has previously described the road-going Hunter T1 as “the Ferrari of the desert” and has created the vehicle to be the fastest cross-country production car in the world. An elaborate Prodrive brochure features the compelling line: “Where we’re going we don’t need roads.”
The close relationship between the road and rally models is obvious to the eye, although there are dozens of differences. Both use a body designed by former Jaguar design boss Ian Callum, now based close to Prodrive’s Banbury base. The T1 is 4600mm long and 2300mm wide, with an aerodynamically oriented fastback shape and a high wing above the rear window to generate downforce, but at 1850mm tall, the road car stands at least 100mm lower than its rally sibling.
The road car uses the same tubular steel spaceframe chassis as the three team cars competing in this year’s Dakar event. The 2022 T1s are clearly related to the promising 2021 models but much modified and the road car follows the latest specification. They have much larger tyres – 38in diameter tyres on a 17in wheel – which should help prevent the dozens of punctures that blighted last year’s campaign. There’s room for a spare in a sidepod ahead of each rear wheel.
All models have Prodrive-designed, ultra-long-travel twin-shock coil suspension at the front and rear, plus air jacks built in for rapid tyre changing – an essential in desert running, where assistance simply isn’t available.