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Paris / New York – Transcontinental 2009

After driving the whole Panamericana in less than 16 days back in 2006 and setting a new world height record for vehicles (21.804 feet at the Ojos de Salado in Chile) in 2007 the german adventurer Matthias Jeschke reaches for another goal:

An international team of success-oriented extreme drivers will set out on a round-the-world tour over land exclusively by car for the first time ever, following the footsteps of early human migration. They will use bio fuel for combustion and only bio oil as the lubricant for engines, axles and transmissions.

The car of choice will again be the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon.

Accompanied by a technological exhibition on the topic "Renewable Energies", the historic tour will lead them across Europe, Russia, Mongolia, Alaska, Canada and the USA, crossing 21 countries in total.

An extreme project for drivers – both historical and historic

The expedition team from Europe, Russia and America will start in Paris on 1 October 2008, and is estimated to reach New York by the end of April 2009. They will venture east through Russia up to the outermost edge of Eurasia. Then, around February 2009, the Bering Straight will be crossed on frozen ice, alternatively, by means of modified, floatable vehicles. This will then take them to Alaska and from there, after crossing Canada and the USA from West to East, they will reach the East Coast.

It is the goal of the expedition to drive around the world using only one single means of transport, and to promote the use of biological fuel and oil and at the same time achieve a CO2-neutral project balance.

Political Support

The project is backed by the German Foreign Office, the German embassies and the German Energy-Agency. In order to successfully communicate the project statements of this historic tour, there will be close co-operation with, for instance, all the countries involved and the foreign Chambers of Commerce both prior to and - in particular - during the expedition.

Without a trace and CO2-neutral

In order to make history without leaving any traces behind, the expedition “Paris / New York – Transcontinental 2009” will take place in winter and will be completely CO2-neutral.

Leaving the environment intact on this stretch of almost 40,000 kilometres will be achieved by taking the following actions:

  • Timing: In order not to leave any tire tracks, the tour will take place in winter. The vehicles will only cross meter deep snow and ice as well as deep-frozen soil, known as permafrost.
  • Low-emission bio fuel and exclusively bio oil based on readily biodegradable and renewable or sustainable energy sources will be used for motors, axles and transmissions.
  • The entire project will take place closely monitoring CO2. To be able to complete this project in a CO2-neutral way, after their round-the-world tour, the expedition team and their partners will plant an equivalent number of trees in close collaboration with the state authorities. This will ensure that the tour actually contributes to reducing CO2.
  • The expedition will only use state-of-the-art vehicles and equipment.
I will post photos and news of the whole tour, so stay tuned!
 

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The first of three Jeep Wrangler Unlimited has received it´s wheels, tires, axles and suspension. More to come...

All three JKs of the Paris / New York project will be shown to the public on the biggest offroad fair in Europe, held in Bad Kissingen in Germany from May, 22nd to 25th 2008.

 

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WOW

This is perhaps the coolest expedition I've ever heard of! :smokin: To be able to accomplish a journey as treacherous and dangerous as this...and all while using alternative oil and fuel...is simply remarkable! Especially considering they're using a JK! Talk about good publicity! I've got to hear more about this! :bounce: Please keep us all posted! :cool:
 

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The last prearrangements are in full swing: the expedition Jeeps are being loaded and prepared, there’s an atmosphere of departure at Extrem Events.
Tonight, the participants will leave for Paris where the “Paris / New York – Transcontinental 2009”-expedition begins.

For a long time the entire team of Extrem Events has continuously worked towards this moment. Thus all participants are full of expectation.
We would like to sincerely thank our partners and helpers again who make this expedition possible.

Also, new pictures of the modified, floatable vehicles as well as the special trailers can be found on our homepage www.pny2009.com

 

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10/03/08: START OF EXPEDITION

Finally! Starting as a vision in the head of Matthias Jeschke some years ago and realized by an expanding and motivated team in approximately 15 months, the expedition has now become vivid and tangible. Today is the beginning of the 43,000 km long distance track from Paris to New York.

A successful kick-off was the press conference of the German Embassy in the French capital city. The resulting dpa-news communication led to huge press coverage in various kinds of media as for example the “Financial Times Deutschland”, the “Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung” and the broadcasting company RTL.

Please have a look in our media coverage section.

Furthermore there are significant pictures in our gallery as a documentation of this historical event.

The atmosphere of departure is remarkably obvious within the team. Finally at the beginning of something unbelievable! The expedition has started!
 

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03. Oktober 2008

Slowly creeping through the Paris traffic of the inner city, we are surmounting the roofs of the other cars – accompanied and thronged by the crossing scooters and motor bikes. Our cars are sticking out of the crowd, which is obvious due to curious to astonished looks of pedestrians and drivers as well as fast-paced taken pictures. There is no possibility to oversee our branded Jeeps with all the additional special equipment.

The dpa-publication (German press agency) from yesterday is still in use. Not only publications in print and internet reached our office, but also news in radio and television. Dpa-radio distributed the interview with Matthias Jeschke to 80 different radio stations and furthermore we received an invitation for a live show of RTL. The media response exceeded our expectations. Especially due to the dominant Motor Show Paris, our partners are thrilled about the amount of response.

In the afternoon we drove to the exhibition and placed the car in an exciting manoeuvre near the exhibition hall 1. We haven’t been displaced by the police, but interestingly been watched and congratulated. We felt honoured to have the vice president of Chrysler International, Mr. Thomas Hausch to welcome the team and to sign the three Jeep bonnets as first person. Afterwards all team members followed. Thomas Hausch emphasized again his confidence in our expedition and he is looking forward the reunion in New York.

Now it is obvious for everyone what happens here. We are ready – It begins! The historic expedition „Paris / New York - Transcontinental 2009“ has started. Happiness and is visible in the faces and motivation, not only to start to circle world, but also to reach the goal in Mai 2009 in New York.
 

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04. Oktober 2008

The day starts with a jam-packed breakfast hall. It is weekend and we are staying in a Disneyland hotel. Many families are once more using the weekend to visit the theme park and with around 150 people they are a huge part of this morning jam.

However, the next call made all breakfast stress disappear, because Matthias Jeschke gave the first live interview of the expedition with SWR 1, which gets on air in Germany only a few minutes delay. Over the following Link you can listen to this Interview in MP3: http://www.pny2009.com/cms/upload/Medien/Radio/2008_10_04_SWR1.MP3

We are going to refuel: Beside regular gasoline we are pumping a part of the cellulose ethanol in the tank what we brought along and mix it to an E30 mixture (30% Ethanol; 70% Gasoline).

The engines whir as usual and swallow the Ethanol of the second generation like they used anything else. No output loss, no changing behaviour. We are leaving Paris northwards in direction of Belgium. For some attendees this has been the first time at the steering wheel of our extremely modified Jeeps, what has given extra tension and motivation.

Even the partly existent language barriers could not cloud the great atmosphere. Far from it! We were talking with hands and feets and these kinds of talks provided a lot of fun with quite a few guffaws of laughter.

On our way to Antwerp, for the first time, we have been able to calculate realistic consumption data for the vehicles – withal the total height of almost 3 meters and a definite higher weight compared to the standard Jeep, the average consumption is only between 12.8 and 14 Litres / 100km.

We spend the evening at the home of Johann Nietvelt and his family, one of the record driver of the “Panamericana – 2006“project. Beside a delicious dinner we have been invited from our host to try a bit of the diversity of the Belgian beer selection. Luckily we are staying in Antwerp tomorrow and nobody has to drive.







 

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Early this morning, we left from Antwerp to the photo shoot in Brussels where we - as a funny coincidence - met two young Englishman on their way to the North Cape.

For me, the gathering was like a closing circle in my life.

In 1989 I left for the North Cape. At that time in winter, I was driving all by myself with an old self built and restored VW Bus northwards and walked the last 12.5 Miles in a dangerous mission all alone through metres of high snow to the peak of Europe.

I must have had a guardian angel already at that time, because due to wrong informations regarding the distance length I lost my strengths on the way back. Despite all efforts a distant passing military vehicle was not able to notice me. Exhausted, I sank down and must have lied there in the snow for a while, because when I regained consciousness it was already late afternoon and it began to dawn.

At the place I woke up was a small water puddle, being build around a marking pole. I took some sips and walked with last strength and will back to my car. Half hanging out of the sliding door I fell asleep and were found by natives who helped me and gave me something warm to drink.

Today - after having done several extraordinary things and being on my probably biggest adventure ever - I met those two guys. They are at the same point in life as I did - at the beginning, carrying the same desideratum inside of them, being filled by zest of action and wish to experience something.

Since one of them - blond hair and beard - looked a kind of like me then, specific thoughts arose. A part of me adopts the role as a viewer and looked back at the younger me and the more experienced me now. It was a synchronous look at the beginning and the present. It was bizarre and exceptionally at the same time.

After this "special" reunion, some of the photo shoots took place in pouring rain. Anyhow, we are in a good mood.

Matthias Jeschke



 

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October 6, 2008

Travelling also means to face new situations and to adjust to them – that is exactly what the expedition demanded from us in a democratic way today! The press conference – which has been prepared excellently by the Representation of the State of Hesse – turned out differently than planned. A national strike in Belgium caused a failure to appear on the part of the representatives of the press and also shut Belgium completely down. It is impressing to notice all the things that were not operating any longer – beginning with a non-speaking radio host as well as buses and train lines. Due to the restricted space in the Hessian State House of Representatives, we presented the banner exhibition along with our three Jeeps in the automobile museum – the only open available space. Besides the visitors of the museum we were also happy to welcome a delegation of the Representation of the State of Hesse as well as representatives of Chrysler Belgium.

Our vehicles were also the center of attention in front of the museum. We particularly liked a Romanian tour group which would have joined us right away. It was a very pleasant, open-minded meeting. After reaching Rotterdam in the evening, we had to stop at a doctor’s office because Falk – our cameraman – has hurt himself on his foot. Right after the treatment we continued our way to the Goethe Institute where they were anticipating our arrival.

But before the greeting, the creators of our Jeeps had to take care of the parking of the expedition vehicles first. Due to a very narrow driveway – only slightly wider than the vehicles themselves – and a constantly closing electric gate this proved to be a time-consuming undertaking. In the evening, the sincere greeting by the employees of the Goethe Institute compensated for all the effort.
 

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October 14, 2008: Switzerland

After the farewell in Limburg we left southwards early in the morning. Our destination: Switzerland – more precisely our partner Alcosuisse in Delémont and IBS in Thun. The factory manager of Alcosuisse was able to 100% satisfy our curiosity about the bio ethanol-production with his explanations and a tour through the factory. We got to know how little chaffed wooden pieces get produced into bio ethanol, that we will carry in our tanks and use on the further trip.

Afterwards we headed towards Thun. At the company IBS, the expert Beat Wyss, adjusted the battery-control-system for our excess-battery-system in a impressive way. Thus our Jeeps' batteries will be loaded in an optimal way and we will have enough capacity to use 4 winches, floodlight, walkie-talkies, laptops and a lot more.

We went to refuel our vehicles at an especially from Alcosuisse supplied gas station around the corner. But not a regular tank, the entire additional tanks got filled up with the valuably bio ethanol out of wooden waste. The owner of the gas station had a whimsical smile on his face as he presented the invoice for 1,700 liters of bio ethanol. The biogenic fuel is clear like water, contains 85 % ethanol and does not stand in competition to any nutrition due to wooden waste as basic material. Bio ethanol of the 2nd generation is one of the crucial points of our idea to not only use renewable energies for spectacular record drives but also use the long range media presence to promote the possibilities, advantages and need to use those resources.

We barely moved as we noticed that the driver’s door got wet even though it was not raining. So we jumped out and tried to find the reason. We were able to find out that one of our roof mounted tanks was leaking. Immediately we welded the tank using the cold-welding-process. After we refuelled the tank, everything seemed to be alright. Special thanks to Beat Wyss from IBS at this point, whose garage we were allowed to use for this repair.

After such an exciting day we spent the whole night driving through France on the highways. Our next destination: the Catalan metropolis Barcelona.





 
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