Shanghai-to-Paris By Electric Vehicle
Over eighty years ago, an intrepid team of adventurers trekked from Paris to Peking by gasoline-powered half-tracks.
This year, a young couple, Géraldine Gabin and Xavier Chevrin, both school teachers in France, have set out to repeat the journey, returning to Paris in a single electric vehicle; a Citroen Berlingo electric van developed by Venturi Automobiles of Monaco. They set out on May 2nd from Shanghai and as we conducted this interview with Venturi President Gildo Pastor from his home in Monaco, the all-electric Berlingo had already traveled more than 3,000 km (1,864 mi) of the 14,000 km journey.
Pastor's small firm developed the electric Berlingo for PSA Peugeot Citroen as part of a competition to develop an electric postal van for La Poste, the French postal service. With three years of development and testing by La Poste, the vehicle has proven especially rugged and reliable, as it has so far demonstrated as it enters the Gobi desert of Mongolia.
While Gabin and Chevrin are making the trip alone, unescorted, and with no technical support, other than a satellite phone and their own wits, Pastor believes this is the best way to demonstrate that electric vehicles are up to the challenge. But he does check their progress first thing each morning... and keeps his fingers crossed.
You can follow their remarkable, once-in-a-lifetime journey through the following web sites:
To listen to the interview with Messr. Pastor, use either of the two embedded MP3 players to the right, or download the 4.2MB file to your hard drive for playback on your favorite MP3 player. This EV World Future in Motion podcast will also be available on Apple iTunes.