- Team Zietlow starts the African leg of its World Record Drive attempt
- Volkswagen Touareg V6 TDI enters Africa in its World Record Drive attempt to cover 17 000 km in under 10 days
23 September 2014 – Volkswagen’s Touareg will start its African leg of the World Record Drive attempt tomorrow, 24 September, when it enters Egypt.
Rainer Zietlow and co-drivers Marius Biela and Matthias Prillwitz are attempting to set a world record of driving over 17 000km from the northernmost part of Europe in Nordkapp, Norway, to the southernmost part of Africa, Cape Agulhas, in just under 10 days. Rainer Zietlow is attempting to set his third world record following his two successful world record drives from Tierra del Fuego to Alaska along the “Panamericana” in 11 days and 17 hours as well as a world record drive from Melbourne to St. Petersburg in 17 days and 18 hours.
Team Zietlow’s World Record Drive attempt officially started on Sunday, 21 September in Nordkapp, Norway at 3am (local time) when the Mayor of Honningsvåg, Kristina Hansen pressed the start button of the stopwatch.
The Mayor of the Cape Agulhas Municipality, Councillor Richard Mitchell, will press the stop button when the Volkswagen Touareg reaches the southernmost point in Africa at the Cape Agulhas monument in the Agulhas National Park.
So far, the non-stop driving (the Touareg will only stop for re-fuelling) has seen Team Zietlow passing through Norway, Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Hungary, Serbia, Bulgaria and Turkey. In Africa, Volkswagen Touareg will drive through Egypt, Sudan, Ethopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe before finally reaching South Africa.
Challenges awaiting Team Zietlow include potholes in Sudan and Ethiopia, countless switchbacks in the African highlands and the infamous “Road of Hell” with its corrugated and volcanic rock surface in northern Kenya. The Touareg will drive through varying temperatures from freezing in Norway to mid-40 degrees Celsius in Sudan.
Team Zietlow has been posting daily reports on its experiences on its website: www.touareg capetocape.com. It includes a blog with photos and videos detailing each day’s stage. The current position of the Touareg is also shown on a virtual map that is updated every five minutes.
The team has pledged to support “Food & Trees for Africa” with the planting of nearly 600 trees around the city of Johannesburg in October 2014. These trees will make the entire “Touareg CapetoCape” project, including the record drive and the scouting tour early this year, CO2-neutral.