MODIFIED

Is this the greatest modified Range Rover ever?

Is this the greatest modified Range Rover in existence? Yes it is, and if you dare to argue, you are a fool. Estimable people of TopGear.com, may we humbly present to you… the Startech Pickup!

Startech - a Brabus Group company, which will explain literally all of the words on this page - is planning on showcasing its simply marvellous creation at the upcoming Shanghai Motor Show. And truly it is something to marvel at.

Buried under all that modification and carbon fibre and red paint lies a supercharged, 5.0-litre V8 Range Rover with 526bhp. But Startech has turned the aristocratic Rangey into what it ambitiously describes as “one of the world’s most exclusive pickups following the best coach building tradition that was once common for English luxury cars”.

So, with “harmonious fashion”, Startech has designed and manufactured 100 bodywork components from aluminium, carbon fibre and steel to make the conversion. The wall to the pickup bed - with a loading length of a whopping 110 centimetres - is welded to the shorter roof skin, and there are newly developed C-pillars to accommodate the excellence at the rear. Business in the front, party in the back: it’s the automotive equivalent of a mullet!

It’s a plastic-lined pickup bed - almost square in shape - with a remote operated tailgate opening which gives another 60cm. Perfect, says Startech, for “customers from the Arab region [who] like to use the pickup bed also for transporting a securely fastened cage that holds their falcons for the hunt”. If you’re not squeaking with joy at the mental imagery involved here, you’re dead inside.

And yet, somehow, it gets better. There’s a widebody version available - on either the SWB or LWB RRs - which incorporate new front bumpers, LED lights, a new front spoiler, wider arches (natch), and new air intakes for “a touch of motor racing flair”. Yep, MOTOR RACING. With falcons on the flatbed. What could be better?

It gets modified air suspension to allow a drop of 30mm at the push of a button, a new exhaust system, 23-inch forged wheels, ‘breathable’ black leather and carbon fibre literally everywhere inside.

And because this is officially The Greatest Modified Range Rover In Existence, Startech will even save you money. “The conversion to a pickup means the Startech multi-utility vehicle meets the prerequisites to be registered as a commercial vehicle in many countries, which often eliminates import fees,” it confidently asserts. Yep, they’re marketing this at farmers. Presumably very minted farmers of very small livestock. Premium micropigs?

Top Gear simply cannot imagine how this work of wonder could be improved in any way. No, actually, scrap that. We’ve got it: add some perspex and a pontiff to that rear deck, and you’ve got a kick-ass Popemobile…