Earlier this month, we posted a story about how German adventurer Matthias Jeschke set the Guinness World Record for highest altitude attained by a four-wheeled vehicle. To recap, the Wrangler Unlimited reached a height of 6,646 meters on the Ojos del Salado volcano in Chile.
That record has already been broken, pending official verification from Guinness.
On April 21, the Chilean duo of Gonzalo Bravo and Eduardo Canales drove their modified Suzuki Samurai ( SJ413) past the Jeep's high point and stopped at 6,688 meters. In addition to the obvious wheel, tire, and suspension changes evident in the photos, the Samurai also packed a supercharged G16A 4-cylinder underhood. It was the third attempt for the pair, who encountered weather difficulties the first time and an engine fire the second time. Repairs were made, and the third try, as the saying goes, was the charm. One of the things Jeschke's team did when they arrived at their high point was to leave a sign that read, "Jeep Parking Only: All others don't make it up here anyway." In a cheeky move, Bravo and Gonzalo came down the volcano with a little extra souvineur.
Assuming the feat gets certified, it's impressive. Jeschke's Extrem Events team had big-time backing and financing, with two Jeeps and several support vehicles provided by DCX, plus a full team of people assisting the effort on-site. Bravo and Canales had no such support, and it looks for all the world like they did it anyway. We'll hoist pisco sours in their honor.
[Source: TwistedAndes ( Trans.) via Autoblog Spanish ( Trans.)]