The Land Rover plant at Solihull, played host today to 16 assorted Land Rover vehicles from Hong Kong, taking part in an epic round the world expedition. They arrived in the UK on 15 July and, whilst on “home soil” made the pilgrimage to Lode Lane, to visit the manufacturing facility where they were first assembled.
The sixteen Land Rovers, driven by their intrepid owners from the Land Rover Club of Hong Kong, are on a drive to conquer the world in 80 days. The four month expedition started on June 9, and already has chalked up more than 15,000km. Vehicles and drivers have tackled all weathers and terrains as they have journeyed through mainland China, Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, Poland, Czech Republic, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium and then France, before reaching the UK.
On arrival at the Solihull plant, the 40 trans-globe explorers were treated to tours of the manufacturing facilities and the new Handover Centre.
Land Rover Manufacturing Manager, Joe McNamara, welcomed the vehicles to the factory where they were originally built and paid tribute to their owners.
He said: “It is a pleasure to welcome these vehicles home to Solihull, and to meet their intrepid drivers and passengers, who are undertaking such a challenging and gruelling journey. But they have certainly chosen the right vehicles for the trip.
“Land Rovers are engineered to be the world’s most capable all-purpose vehicles, and these have already demonstrated enormous durability over the world’s most challenging and inhospitable terrains, with yet more to face before they return to Hong Kong. Equally, their drivers and passengers embody the “above and beyond” ethos for which Land Rover is renowned.”
Following their visit, the group and their vehicles departed for London, where they will enjoy a short break before heading back to France and tackling the next stage of their route through southern Europe and North Africa.
On return to mainland Europe from Casablanca at the end of July, a number of the vehicles will be shipped back to Hong Kong, while others will be shipped to Halifax, Canada. These will continue the journey through North America, looping south to New York and Washington DC before heading west to Los Angeles and San Francisco.
They will again head north to Vancouver where they will be shipped to Tinjan in China, and from there will embark on the penultimate leg of their expedition, via Wuzhou to visit the new Chinese Land Rover Experience centre. Finally they will visit Shanghai, before aiming to return to Hong Kong on 24 September.