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Marauder Makes Mayhem On Top Gear

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On: Fri, Jul 1, 2011 at 11:16AM | By: Chris Weiss

Marauder Makes Mayhem On Top Gear

Earlier this week, the all-new season of Top Gear began. And we're not talking the watery, semi-entertaining American version, but the original that started it all. What better way to start an all-new season than by featuring something that can be described as the "world's most unstoppable vehicle." The crew put the Marauder armored vehicle through all kinds of brutal testing, and the machine of destruction and protection came out with nary a scratch.

Built by the Paramount Group of South Africa, the Marauder looks kind of like a Hummer that's taken every type of steroid known to man. It's taller, burlier, longer, and, most importantly, tougher. It can carry up to 10 fully outfitted troops in a military mission and is designed to keep its occupants safe no matter what kind of carnage is going on outside. It can be used as an infantry patrol vehicle, command center, or mobile medical station and can survive all types of explosions and attacks. Highlights include run-flat tires, which can roll another 30 miles, even after being pierced by bullets, the ability to swim with a fording depth of half the vehicle, and anti-blast seats. Despite weighing 15 tons—up to 18 when fully packed—the Marauder can travel at speeds up to 75 mph.

Top Gear sent Richard Hammond down to South Africa to test the Marauder, and the crew used the massive all-terrainer to stomp cars monster-truck-style, smash through two-foot-thick brick walls, and take on hungry lions in the wild. The Marauder doesn't look any worse for the wear.

The most interesting part of Top Gear's testing was the final test—a side-by-side explosion test with the Hummer. While the Hummer—often thought of as the pinnacle of tough, hard-nosed off-roaders—was a smoking pile of damaged parts, the Marauder took the explosion and drove away, looking hardly phased, outside of a few flat tires and couple of loosened bolts.

Lest we think that the Marauder is all fun and games, Paramount Group's executive chairman Ivor Ichikowitz reminds us that it's serious business (and throws in a little serving of emotional advertising at the same time): "Despite the fun working with Top Gear, it is important to remember soldier protection is a very serious issue for armies worldwide. We are talking about saving lives. With this type of technology available and the ever present threat of IED’s there really is no excuse for governments not to provide the best protected vehicles for their defense forces."

The great thing about 1.5-minute video clips is that they tend to be all action and no lull. The Top Gear Marauder clip below follows that trend.

Photo Gallery (click a thumbnail to enlarge)



dwalter | 4:02PM (Fri, Jul 8, 2011)

I didn't know the new season had started... Nice!

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