Posted on July 16, 2016 by Matt Pressman
We've reported on the remarkable 80eDays* electric vehicle challenge when it kicked off a few weeks ago. For these electric vehicle (EV) owners, traveling around the world in just 80 days has been both challenging and exhilarating. Almost all participants in this epic EV rally own a trusty Tesla Model S, so a recent North American pit stop at the Tesla Factory was probably akin to a religious experience. Yes... this was a trip to the holy land -- only it was in Fremont, California. Group photos were followed by a factory tour and special welcome reception from Tesla staffers.
Above: 80eDays particpants from all over the world at their "homeland" at last
Rafael de Mestre, the captain of Team Spain and 80edays founder, explained: "for us, visiting the native Tesla factory is very symbolic, and a great example of how the EVs and Tesla Family bring together many open-minded people from the around world and unite them on a single mission to make the world a better place." Understandably, the 80eDays folks called this ‘Tesla Experience’ their key highlight during the North American stage of their worldwide EV rally.
Above: 80eDays participants stopping at the Golden Gate Bridge
Nevertheless, the North American stage of 80eDays had proved to be a true challenge with an estimated 100,000 km driven in total according to participants' odometers. All participants drove an average of about 500 km per day. The teams dispersed along U.S. highways with pre-set checkpoints in New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. Most of the Model S owners participating didn't have charging issues due to the ever-expanding proliferation of Tesla Superchargers nationwide.
Above: 80eDays Teslas loving clean electricity at Hoover Dam in Nevada
However, one of the non-Tesla teams, Team China, had some difficulty in their Denza (see turquoise car below) finding charging stations due to differing standards. Luckily, they got by utilizing campsites and hotels that provided high power outlets. To their benefit, Team China reported a record-breaking distance of 458 km on a single charge in their Denza.
Above: 80eDays teams arriving in China at Guangzhao Airport earlier this week
One of the more unusual electric vehicles participating in 80eDays is Hungary's Modulo Electric Bus. The fiberglass composite structured modular bus features an all-electric powertrain and amazed many with its remarkable record in the 2016 rally. After getting from Budapest to Paris in March and receiving special honors via a world award, the Modulo is the first (and only) electric bus to proudly cross North America.
Above: Modulo Electric Bus, the future of eco-friendly public transport
Next up, the 80edays 2016 ‘EL DURO’ teams will be entering their third stage of the EV challenge in Asia. With the support of China Southern Airlines, 80edays teams recently left Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) in their cargo flight to continue their EV challenge over in China. They touched down at Guangzhao Airport earlier this week.
Above: Prepping to fly to China for the next leg of their worldwide EV rally
We wish all the teams the best of luck on the next stage of their global adventure in China. We've had a lot of fun following the 80eDays adventures on Instagram. The Tesla photos are absolutely stunning and it looks like they're really having a blast. And, please give all of these die-hard Tesla owners some support on Facebook or Twitter. I'm sure they'll appreciate all the Tesla love!