The Peloponnesus may have witnessed thousands of troops march in ancient times, but has it ever seen a modified 13 ton Mercedes Axor 1829 4x4 truck pass by, carrying two world travellers and a dog?
‘At the moment we are parked on the stormy coast of the Peloponnese peninsula in Greece. Since last night there is a storm roaring outside, the waves are high and our living unit is rocking like a little boat. We’re just going to sit it out and hope that tomorrow we can spend more time outside.’
Wait, what? Meet the Kammermans. Andrea, Mike and their dog Aimée are on a World Tour that will cover around 240,000 km through over 60 countries in 3 years. It’s called extreme travelling for a reason.
It’s their second world tour. The couple is driven by curiosity, as it turns out. Attracted by the remotest areas and discovering them at their own pace. ‘The farther away from civilisation, the more exciting’, they laugh.
It takes a special kind of vehicle, though, to get them away from everyone and everything: a Mercedes Axor 1829 4x4 truck, modified to defy the extreme conditions the Kammermans seek out.
It carries its adventurers along with transport fuel, water, food, medicines, spare parts, consumables, clothing and photo equipment. Total weight, with full diesel and water tanks: around 13 ton.
The daily wear and tear of the truck is extremely high, so all the main components need to be extremely robust and durable.
‘Our tyres have to take us across the frozen rivers in Siberia and months of snow-covered roads,’ Mike and Andrea explain. ‘But also slippery grounds, impact holes, water and unexpected obstacles. For the many kilometers off the roads with reduced pressure we were looking for a tyre with an extremely robust carcass and self-cleansing profile.’
But. They also drive a lot on paved roads, so the tyre has to offer good mileage and road comfort as well.
As it turns out. One tyre rules them all. The Goodyear Offroad ORD.
The Goodyear Offroad ORD actually is one of the few 14R20 tyres on the market that is legal to drive with in winter conditions (for insurance reasons) - an absolute must for the Kammermans!
The higher mileage of the Goodyear Offroad ORD also plays a crucial role in their expedition, and from an environmental and road comfort point of view the tyre is a logical choice as well since it is less noisy than its competitors.
‘One time,’ Andrea recalls, ‘we ended up in a water channel in Iran. The cement layer covering wasn't as sturdy as it looked. Our rear right wheel broke through. It was trapped between sharp, broken cement blocks and reinforcing iron.’
‘The only way out was to grind the tyre through. Sure, the rubber was a little scratched but the carcass held and we used that tyre for another 30,000 km. See? Many people underestimate the importance of quality tyres.’
A tyre is literally what connects your vehicle to the ground. A flat at the wrong moment can have terrible consequences.
‘But we have never had a flat with our Goodyear Offroad ORD so far,’ Mike concludes. ‘Touch wood!’