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Dogs vs. SUV: who will win in a race between Land Rover Discovery Sport and champion dog sled team?

Posted August 27, 2017

Dog is basically a family member for most. It is a companion that leads us to most of our adventures and that is why people want to take their dogs with them everywhere. Car manufacturers are beginning to understand this need and now Land Rover decided to demonstrate is canine friendliness by challenging a team of husky dogs to the Vesileppis Ski Tunnel in Finland.

The race was held in a brilliant Vesileppis Ski Tunnel in Finland. Image credit: Land Rover

Of course these are no ordinary dogs – they are actually going to this ski tunnel for training for the upcoming winter championships. Land Rover chose Discovery Sport SUV for the mission and while transporting dogs is essential for a car like this, this time it only took one, as we can see in the clip. Discovery Sport then challenged Laura Kääriäinen and her team of six sled dogs for a race. Of course, the venue for this event was very special as well.

Vesileppis Ski Tunnel is a long undulating tunnel, carved into the bedrock 35m below ground level and kept at constant two degrees below zero. This allows maintaining a 20 mm layer of snow, which is essential for winter sports exercising. This time it was also very good to test car’s off-road ability, especially having in mind the obstacles that there laying on the track.

SUV and the sled started to opposite directions. While dogs could maintain the constant speed, Discovery Sport had to negotiate through a set of ice blocks, which allowed proving reliability of traction control system and stability of the chassis. However, while the car was in serious disadvantage, it managed to win, but just by a dog’s hair.

While the outcome may seem obvious, it really wasn’t that easy to predict. Snow is the element where sled dogs thrive and cars typically struggle. While Land Rover is very good at making its cars very capable in slippery conditions, winter is still a hard enemy to beat. Luckily, Land Rover has some weapons against it. Driver Karl Richards, Lead Engineer for Stability Control Systems at Jaguar Land Rover, said: “Land Rover’s advanced Terrain Response technology and intelligent four-wheel drive system ensure our premium compact SUV is in a class of its own when it comes to off-road driving – whether you’ve got two legs or four.”

Dogs are our friends and transporting them properly is our responsibility. Land Rover, as many other SUV manufacturers, provides a full height luggage divider, which prevents dogs from entering passenger compartment. That, of course, improves safety in case of emergency. Rubber mat is also a nice feature – dogs tend to get dirty while outdoors.

Source: Land Rover

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