Iveco and the Paris-Dakar race 2007
For Iveco the appointment with the Paris-Dakar race is now a tradition. For some years Iveco vehicles have taken part in this fascinating adventure in the desert, obtaining good results with the rally world champion Miki Biasion, author of the best pages of the recent Iveco competitive past. The pilot from Bassano del Grappa came first among the current trucks category (fifth absolute) in Dakar 1999 edition. Another rally champion, the Finnish Markku Alén, protagonist of the world championships dominated by Fiat Group vehicles up to the ‘90s, got a prestigious placing at Dakar 2005 with Eurocargo 140E24 WS, being placed seventh absolute for the trucks.
Besides results, for Iveco the Dakar challenge is a great opportunity to verify the behaviour of our product in operation. Each single component is put to hard test in extreme situations, in the desert, in impassable zones, at high temperatures, with the possibility, therefore, of carrying out interesting and significant reliability and performance tests.
The Dakar appointment is also an opportunity to challenge, in a difficult competition full of dangers, big sized trucks, equipped with very powerful engines, specifically designed to face the unknown factors of the desert, dirt roads or tracks scarcely practicable, even though in a confrontation which, from a technical point of view, is absolutely unequal compared to current model vehicles.
But Dakar, a competition not far from adventure, reminds Iveco its passion for sports and the world of real adventure.
Indeed, there are many initiatives in relation to which Iveco vehicles are permanently considered by people as the entertaining authors of incredible enterprises, thus attaching to the concept of “adventure” that of competition with oneself, searching for new limits and trying to overcome them.
In 1995, with the Rome – New York expedition, the Overland project was started, whose task was to combine Iveco technology with people’s attraction towards trucks. Iveco orange coloured vehicles, 330.30 ANW 6x6 with 8 V-cylinder engines, became the protagonists of some adventurous journeys, overcoming extreme difficulties, both due to the weather and the routes, never stopping, showing their great reliability and quality.
In particular, Overland 6 “The Mediterranean blue ring” gave rise to a symbolic meeting full of significance, that between the mountains – uncontaminated area par excellence – and Iveco attention for the environment.
Still speaking about adventurous journeys, we should not forget the expeditions of Alfredo and Angelo Castiglioni, the archaeologists who, in 1989, with the support of Iveco vehicles, discovered the legendary town of Berenice Pancrisia (Berenice “completely golden”), already mentioned by Pliny the Elder in his “Naturalis Historia” and which had been long forgotten. One of the greatest archaeological discoveries that the desert had protected and guarded for millennia.
In more recent times, the Castiglioni brothers took part in another enterprise: the Iveco Pharaonic Track, where Miki Biasion was also involved, and which was a real archeological (and geographical) exploration through the Sudanese Nubian desert, one of the most sterile and least known in the world, searching for a piece of history of the ancient Egyptians and their conquests in Africa.
Going back to Dakar 2007, Luisa Trucco will drive a Eurocargo - ML140E24W 4x4 – i.e. the off-road version of the model which is the reference vehicle of the medium size segment.
Eurocargo is a vehicle which stresses its robustness, reliability, safety and extreme versatility and which is highly appreciated in terms of market share both in Italy and in the expanded Europe, where Iveco has been present for a long time.
Also this year the market trend in this segment has shown positive signals and Iveco has obtained so far a 25.1% share in Europe and 60.3% in Italy.
The 4x4 version offers a lot of specific benefits which dramatically improve both the life onboard and the use of the truck in extreme safety: from the front step to clean the windscreen, to the lowest climb step which can be turned to overcome possible obstacles, to the radiator particular guard, and to the steel bumper fitted with headlight protection grid.
In conclusion, also for this off-road version, Eurocargo is even more “the Best in Class” both for its regular tasks, such as civil protection, snow removal, road uses, and for demanding events like the Paris-Dakar race.
Iveco designs, manufactures, and markets a broad range of light, medium and heavy commercial vehicles, off-road trucks, city and intercity buses and coaches as well as special vehicles for applications such as fire fighting, off-road missions, defence and civil protection.
Iveco employs 32,000 people and runs 43 production units in 18 Countries in the world using excellent technologies developed in 15 research centres. Besides Europe, the company operates in China, Russia, Turkey, Australia, Argentina, Brazil, and South Africa. More than 4,500 service outlets in over 100 Countries guarantee technical support wherever in the world an Iveco vehicle is at work.
Turin, 24 November 2006