Iveco Delivers Specialist 4x4 Fleet for Expedition to the Arctic
TURIN, Italy - December 8, 2008: Iveco has delivered six special vehicles for the "Oltre – Beyond The Edge 2008" expedition to the Arctic. The expedition will be travelling from North Cape to the Bering Strait to celebrate the 90th anniversary of the North-East Passage completed by Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen.
The presentation of the vehicles took place at Iveco’s headquarters in Turin, in the presence of Petter Johannesen, expedition head and descendent of Roald Amundsen. Johannesen will use a fleet of four Massif five-door vehicles and two Iveco Daily 4x4s that have been specially equipped to tackle the challenging climatic conditions of the freezing Nordic winter.
The expedition’s route will take it into some of the most difficult conditions in the world for motor vehicles, where temperatures routinely drop to below -50°C. Indeed, -20°C is already cold enough to cause critical static stress on materials and components. Plastics, for example, become hard and fragile; physical transformations cause oils and fluids to lose their effectiveness; rubber parts and electrical cables crack and break far more easily. Whilst moving, the vehicles will have to face up to extreme dynamic stress caused by the hardening of shock absorbers and the freezing of hydraulic components.
Iveco was happy to accept the challenge posed by these conditions and to supply the expedition with the extremely reliable vehicles it requires. Both the Dailys and Massifs have been specially prepared to guarantee maximum performance under even the toughest conditions. In particular, special guards have been fitted to protect mechanical parts against impacts and the fuel systems have been adapted to ensure an adequate supply to the main systems whatever the conditions.
The cab interiors have also been fitted with additional heating and demisting systems, whilst the electrical systems have been protected against possible impact damage and the cold, together with the provision of increased power to drive additional lights. Other additions have seen the vehicles fitted with winches and claw tyres to ensure traction on ice. Because tyre pressure may have to be reduced to improve traction on snow, the vehicles also benefit from special beadlock wheels.
The ‘Arctic-proofing’ process did not stop here and, whilst the Massif 4x4s did not require any special installations, the two Daily 4x4s were completely refitted, one as a combined truck, living quarters and spares store, and the other as a combined kitchen and living quarters.
Respect for the environment will be a constant theme throughout the expedition, especially since one of the purposes of the trip is to emphasise the need for greater ecological awareness. The scientific value of the journey has already been ensured by contributions from major organisations and institutions like the Italian Space Agency, Telespazio, the San Raffaele Hospital and the WWF.
The "Oltre – Beyond The Edge 2008" expedition set off on Sunday 7th December from Milan’s main commercial street, Corso Buenos Aires. From Milan the vehicles will drive northwards for fifteen days to Norway’s North Cape, where the real journey will begin. The expedition is hoping to reach the Bering Strait in March 2009. The team is made up of a total of 40 people, including researchers, doctors, journalists, photographers, video operators, drivers, and mechanics, with personnel rotating at the end of each of twelve 30-day legs.