Say hello to our little friend!!
Fantastic news! Team ‘That’s Not A Car!’ now have a car! Our trusty steed is a little Fiat Panda, with a 1.2 litre engine (as specified by The Mongol Rally rules). It is a 2007 model so is in quite good nick. We have a good feeling about this little tin can, she will definitely get us over the finish line if we treat her right. We might even give her a bit of a scrub at the finish line to thank her for her efforts. She’s looking a little plain but that will change a few days before we drive her to the starting line in Chichester, UK. She’ll be covered head to toe in Aussie stickers and our sponsors logos. Pat and James are also hard at work discussing and ordering parts to add to her including roof racks and spotlights.
The hardest part in securing our little friend was purchasing her from half way around the world (and keep in mind we’d never even seen the car with our own eyes so it was always going to be a risk). Pat was searching week after week for a Fiat Panda, 4WD it was definitely the car we wanted due to it’s 4x4 capabilities. After two others fell through Pat finally came upon this little beauty. She was a category D, which meant she’d been lightly damaged (the bonnet had been replaced). After informing the dealership we definitely wanted this car we had to find someone to purchase and pick it up for us. Enter Andrew, a fellow rallier who has been savvy and kind enough to secure cars for overseas teams and have them donate to his teams fundraising efforts. Andrew went and collected our little friend and even registered her for us. He then drove it to his friends place in Reading where the car is being safely stored until my arrival at the end of June where I’ll drive her around Scotland for a week. All teams had to have their cars purchased by June so as to register and pay for the shipping costs at the finish line. This meant I had to make an expensive overseas call to UK company Herts to secure insurance for our EU leg. Herts have something called Banger Rally Insurance, meaning all those people insane enough to do a car rally can get covered for the number of days they intend to drive. The remaining countries we drive through outside the EU allow us to simply buy insurance at the border. In the end insurance split between all of us cost only sixty-five dollars (aud) each which is pretty good. There have definitely been Fiat Panda’s across the Mongol Rally finish line. So fear not, you will see a photo of this trusty steed with our grubby unwashed faces triumphantly standing next to her.