Force Motors recently invited us for a media preview of their 2014 and 2015 Rain Forest Challenge Winning Gurkha vehicles and boy we were impressed with the go-anywhere capability of these monsters. The vehicles included the 2014 and 2015 Gurkha all prepped up for the Rain Forest Challenge. Also, these were the same vehicles which won the challenge for both the years since its inception in India.
Firstly, we got a chance to ride shotgun in the 2015 model Gurkha around the challenging off-road track built in their factory premises at Akurdi Pune. With such huge tyres and ground clearance, the vehicle cleared any obstacle thrown at it without any hiccup. The track had a huge ditch at the start followed by a steep elevation. The 320 Nm of torque was put to good use.
At a later stage, we were briefed about the differences between the 2014 and 2015 model which participated in the challenge. You can check the differences below.
Post lunch, we got a chance to drive the 2014 model inside the factory premises. With the raised ride height, newbies to off-roading like me can easily topple this vehicle. These vehicles need to be driven by experienced drivers. Also for comparison, we drove the stock Force Gurkha and understood how badass the RFC prepped vehicle is.
|1||Engine||TD 2200 CRDI (from Force Traveller BS IV and Force One) developing||TD 2200 CRDI (from Force Traveller BS IV and Force One) developing|
|140 BHP / 104 KW at 3800 rpm 320 Nm torque at 1600 – 2400 rpm||140 BHP / 104 KW at 3800 rpm 320 Nm torque at 1600 – 2400 rpm|
|2||Gear Box||G 32/5B (from Traveller BS IV and Force One)||G 32/5B (from Traveller BS IV and Force One)|
|3||Tyres||33 X 10.50 X 16 Silverstone extreme||37 X 12.50 X 16 Maxxis Trepador Bias|
|4||Front Axle||Dana 44 Front ( custom made by FML for RFC application with 30 splines shafts from Talbros)||Dana 60 Front (custom made by FML for RFC application with 35 splines shafts from RCV Axles USA)|
|5||Rear Axle||Dana 44 (from force one) custom altered by FML for RFC application||Dana 60 Rear custom made by FML for RFC application with 35 splines shafts|
|6||Diff Lockers||Selectable (open / locked)Eaton E Lockers ( for 30 Splines Shafts)||Selectable (open / locked) Eaton E Lockers (for 35 Splines Shafts)|
|7||Front Suspension||SOA (Spring over Axles) Leaf Spring setup with missing link shackles with 12 inch travel Gas shocks||3 Link front with Pan hard and 2.5 inch Dia Dual coil over shocks with reservoir of 14 inch travel (36 inch Extended Length&22 inch Collapsed Length)|
|8||Rear Suspension||SOA (Spring over Axles) Leaf Spring setup with 12 inch travel Gas shocks||4 Link double triangulated with 2.5 inch Dia Dual coil over shocks with reservoir of 14 inch travel (36 inch Extended Length&22 inch Collapsed Length)|
|9||Steering||Full Hydraulic steering kit adapted from Force Balwan range of Tractor||Full Hydraulic steering kit adapted from Force Balwan range of Tractor|
|10||Top speed||Limited to 100 Kmph||Limited to 100 Kmph|
|11||Max Gradeability||Max 45 deg||60 deg|
|13||Max side Gradient /Roll over angle||30 Deg||30 Deg|
|14||Approach Angle||50 deg||88 deg|
|15||Departure Angle||44 deg||58 deg|
|16||Water Wading capability||1000 mm||1100 mm|
|17||Articulation capability||12 inch suspension Travel , 19 inch wheel travel and 36 inch ramp travel index (RTI)||14 inch suspension travel 24 inch wheel travel and 42 inch Ramp travel index (RTI)|
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