Platune Sand-X to take dunes by storm

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Essentially a snowmobile with wheels instead of front tracks, the Platune Sand-X nevertheless appears ideal for desert riding. Reaching a top speed of 116mph and accelerating to 62mph in just 2.8 seconds, the Sand-X is far quicker than traditional dune conveyances like the Yamaha Raptor 700R (0-62mph in 5.4 seconds) while its makers claim it’s also exceptional safe due to its low center of gravity and, extended length in long track. Its makers envision the Sand-X finding a role with militaries operating in desert theaters in addition to appealing to leisure riders.
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In countries like Dubai, dune riding is one of the most popular leisure
activities. What else do you do when your country is 99% barren desert?
The Sand-X should find instant appeal there due to its massive speed
and capability, factors that will also prove popular with government
buyers. Platune suggests that in addition to the speed, the Sand-X’s
unprecedented off-road tank range (over 220 miles from its 11-gallon
tank) and the ability to travel from A to B in a straight line over
just about any obstacle should give it a unique appeal over traditional
dune buggies, sand rails and 4x4s.

Power comes from an 800cc
Rotax Power T.E.K two-stroke parallel-twin producing 151bhp. It’s
shared with several snowmobiles, so it should come as no surprise that
the transmission is a CVT. That combination helps keep overall weight
down to just 463lbs (dry), which is fairly impressive given the size of
the whole contraption.

Platune

  • http://cohobot.blogspot.com/ coho

    CanAm Spyder…Hummer Edition™.

    I think I like it.
    Maybe with a spare track made of cut-up sportbike tires for pavement use. Dear DMV, it only has two wheels so it must be registrable as a motorcycle, right?

  • JR

    @coho

    I realize you’re just kidding around, but I think this would register as a motorcycle… most trike vehicles do I think…

    Also, I don’t know much about snowmobiles, but I remember being told that they rely on the moisture and coldness of snow to cool their tracks, I wonder what these guys are doing about that.

    That’s just something I was told though; could be just plain wrong.

  • steaminSteven

    I think it needs a bigger radiator in front!

  • Dangry

    Maybe the dumbest thing I’ve ever seen.

  • Andy M

    For the record, snowmobiles have skis to steer not tracks. Cooling is typically achieved with heat exchangers under the running boards (where your feet go) and snow cools the fluid. With no snow, the large radiator, I presume, is necessary to lower operating temps when driving in the desert. This is basically just a snow machine with wheels and a radiator. My concern would be how they plan on keeping the rear suspension operating properly with all the sand and no snow to lubricate the sliders…

  • modelasian

    I’ve never been a fan of shredding the “barren” desert, which is actually a fragile ecosystem. However, my eco-sensitivity has been buried beneath a sandstorm of awesomeness from this Desert Rats-meets-the-future mobile.
    How would this do in races like Baja?

  • area_educator

    My opinion of the Can Am Spyder degrades a bit every time I see one in person. My mind just sort of goes Spyder_Pointlessness+1.

    But this thing is awesome. The Sand-X makes the Spyder look even more pointless. It’s like seeing 1000 Spyders in person.

    Also, I’d like to see them experiment with an articulated front end, like on the MP3– a leaning rear-tracked, trike.