The Sandracer 500GT offers a duality in its purpose whereby offering the luxury of a supercar while possessing the off-road capabilities of a hardened dune racer.
Designed by Zarooq Motors, whose name is inspired by the Arabic name for the fastest snake in the desert, it claims to also be the first car manufacturer from the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Its founder, Mohammed Al Qadi, has been said to be involved with motor racing for over a decade.
The Sandracer 500GT’s specifications also seem to reflect the definition of which Zarooq Motors’ name was founded on. 0 to 100 km/h arrives in just under four seconds with a top speed of 220 km/h courtesy of its 6.2-litre V8 engine producing 532 hp and 660 Nm of torque. It also comes with a 5-speed Weddle sequential gearbox and a 6-piston caliper brake system.
Part of what makes this possible is that the 500GT is super light despite the monstrosity it appears to be; weighing in at only 1,300 kg (kerb weight) thanks to its carbon fibre body mated to a handmade racing tubular chassis.
It also comes with a built-in roll cage, a 450 mm travel Intrax Racing Suspension and a hefty 130-litre fuel tank – necessary ingredients for a vehicle that could possibly be on its roof very often or lost for hours it tackles the treacherous desert dunes.
The Sandracer 500GT is Zarooq Motors’ first production car with a run of 35 vehicles so far. It’s manufactured in collaboration with Mansory, a German car tuning specialist, who’s in charge with the carbon fibre body and leather interior alongside Spanish Grand Prix engineers Campos Racing. It even comes with air-conditioning and an infotainment system too!
In an interview with CNN, Zarooq Motors co-founder, Iannis Mardell said, “In my street, I think there are three Ferraris so you can’t really stand out with one of those. You need something a little more eccentric, yet also positive.”
In the same CNN report, Mardel was quoted saying that Zarooq Motors’ clientele consists mostly of royalty from Saudi Arabia and the UAE. They also had interest shown from European counterparts along with presumably ultra-wealthy individuals from Russia, Japan and even Kenya.
The asking price for the Sandracer 500GT starts from USD 450,000 (approx RM 1,929,825). To put things in perspective, for that kind of money, you can get two top of the line, limited edition Range Rovers and still have money left to spare.