The Maruti Suzuki Raid de Himalaya rally is staged at the highest altitudes in world motorsport. Maruti Suzuki has supported the Raid de Himalaya from its inception in 1999 and nurtured it to the mega motorsport fixture that it enjoys today. It is one of the oldest of only three international motorsport events organised in the country, and is also on the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) and Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme (FIM) rally-raid calendars. The Raid de Himalaya is rated amongst the top ten toughest rallies in the world and given its high international standards it sees participation from abroad as well. Every year come October, the Spiti Valley in Himachal Pradesh and the Ladakh and Zanskar regions of Jammu and Kashmir become a hub of motorsport activity as competitors and teams get going for the week-long, arduous Himalayan rally.
Held several thousand feet above sea level, the Raid de Himalaya rally is a test of both man and machine and is the ideal testing ground for Maruti’s vehicles. The Raid’s claim to fame is that it’s staged at the world’s highest rally camp, 16,000 feet above mean sea level, where temperatures dip to minus 25 degrees Celsius. The Raid de Himalaya 2011 sported three categories for participation, Xtreme, Adventure Trial and Bikes Xtreme with a combined participation of over 290 racers. The Xtreme and Adventure category competed on two separate treacherous and challenging routes initially, but met at the Rangdum valley, Ladakh. After Rangdum, the two category participants continued together via Penzi-La till the final stop at Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir. Year after year, Maruti Suzuki vehicles have been the most dominant forces at the Raid de Himalaya.