ABOVE Mapped out on the side of the Troopy, their route and collection of flags is growing rapidly

VEHICLES

Not many things last forever, but a N/A 1HZ comes damn close. This engine’s reliability and simplicity means you can often find them rattling away in some of the world’s toughest terrains, in everything from buses to LandCruisers. And this made the 1HZ a natural choice for Günther and Rashida, who wanted something efficient and dependable to power them on their overlanding circumnavigation of the globe.

THE OWNERS
Günther and Rashida had lived their entire lives in the land of mountains, chocolate and fondue. Raising a family in Switzerland and seeing their children leave the nest and then begin travelling with their own young families, lit a fire underneath them and so they began searching for the perfect vehicle to take them on their dream trip. Around the world. Günther told us, “We have worked all our lives and there comes a moment where we see our children have travelled more than us… and we needed to change that”.

Transnational Troopcarrier

These globe-trotting Troopy tourers have driven across 25 countries… and they’re still driving.

WORDS & IMAGES BY HARRY TEMPLE

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THE VEHICLE… AND THE TRIP
Enter ‘Dagi’ or the bush-taxi (buschtaxi) as they are affectionately known in Europe. Knowing that importing a brand-new 78 Series Troop Carrier would be out of the question because of the tariffs on personal-import vehicles in Switzerland, they had to play the waiting game on the second-hand market. Eventually one was sourced from a likeminded couple who were upgrading to a full-size truck to continue their own intercontinental adventure.

The Troopy had already seen plenty of action, having been driven across South America, Africa and Iceland. Five years down the track, and the left-hand drive Toyota has now been across 25 countries with its new owners. After an overhaul of the electrics and three months of testing in Morocco, the course was set south out of Europe and into Turkey. From there, the trio crossed into Iran and then through the Pamir Mountains and then east into central Asia, via the Old Silk Road. Once they descended through the Malay archipelago, they shipped the Troopy to Perth and are now on their second lap of Australia, taking in all the sites they couldn’t fit into their first lap.

ABOVE Solitude in the Karakum desert, Turkmenistan // BELOW Shipping the car in the container to Perth

BELOW The Buschtaxi event held in Storndorf 2014

ABOVE Crossing the Pamir mountains early on in the journey

BELOW Getting on some angles in southern Laos

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BELOW Left-hand drive must make for some weird looks across at the traffic lights

Arguably the most striking feature on this LandCruiser is the pop-top camper. A must for long-distance travel, Rashida told me the convenience and ease of set-up as being her two most important features. Not ones to waste any space, the roof of the camper is adorned with a 200W solar panel and a Top-Box for extra storage. Interior space is at a premium, so the three Howling Moon awnings add valuable living space, especially in bad weather. Externally, the rear of the vehicle features a dual rear tyre carrier, because two spares make sense (and you can read more about this here). Tucked up underneath the rear is a long-range sub tank, which increases the touring range.

Open up the rear doors and you can see this is much more than just another Troopy camper conversion; this is Günther and Rashidas’ home away from home. Personal possessions and ingenious storage solutions fill every nook and cranny. 100L of water feeds the sink and food is kept cold thanks to the 65L Dometic fridge/freezer located next to the storage compartments that line the driver’s side wall. Tucked between the rear living quarters and the cabin is the electrical heart of the Troopy; 200Ah lithium LiFeMnPo batteries. A Multi-Plus 1200W inverter and PCM4 battery monitor make sure the system is running perfectly, as the system needs to deliver clean power to support the specialized gear that they are running up front. For data logging, mapping and photo storage a PC-8 computer is hard-mounted between the seats and outputs to the screen mounted next to the driver. Additionally an all-round video system from Luis and the usual array of wireless radio technology connect the Troopy to the outside world.

BELOW The Swiss plates attract some attention on the road

ABOVE An investment in comfort… these Recaro seats are the best I have ever sat in.

THE MODIFICATIONS
Günther is proud of the unopened 1HZ engine and he is keen to keep it that way. I asked if he would ever fit a turbo to the old 4.2L and it was met with a resounding, “no”. Not that I blame him either, the Troopy may be slower than a wet weekend but it always gets them to where they need to go. As you can imagine, the engine bay is fairly stock, albeit with an upgraded yellow top battery. When they were in Melbourne nearly 12-months ago, they decided to take the opportunity to replace the gearbox and renew the suspension.

Protecting the front, an ARB winch compatible bar provides provision for the winch and the pair of 12-inch LED bars. In a move that won’t sit well with local authorities they have left their high-lift jack mounted on top of the bull bar. Improved traction off-road is via ARB air lockers.


BELOW The little emblem I first mistook for an ambulance symbol at a distance. Apparently that’s isn’t the first time that has happened, as Rashida has had to play nurse several times while travelling through dense jungle when injured individuals approached the Troopy

BELOW You know you have been to some places when there are four languages on your fuel cap!

ABOVE A little mascot of their travels through south east Asia

FINAL THOUGHTS
It is no small feat to drive your vehicle around the world. Wherever they ship the Troopy to next, whether it’s the Amazon or the Angolan plains, you’ll be able to follow their adventures at their blog or over on Instagram @globediscovers. Safe travels from all of us here at Unsealed 4X4.

VEHICLES

Transnational Troopcarrier

WORDS & IMAGES BY HARRY TEMPLE

These globe-trotting Troopy tourers have driven across 25 countries… and they’re still driving.

Not many things last forever, but a N/A 1HZ comes damn close. This engine’s reliability and simplicity means you can often find them rattling away in some of the world’s toughest terrains, in everything from buses to LandCruisers. And this made the 1HZ a natural choice for Günther and Rashida, who wanted something efficient and dependable to power them on their overlanding circumnavigation of the globe.

ABOVE Mapped out on the side of the Troopy, their route and collection of flags is growing rapidly

THE OWNERS
Günther and Rashida had lived their entire lives in the land of mountains, chocolate and fondue. Raising a family in Switzerland and seeing their children leave the nest and then begin travelling with their own young families, lit a fire underneath them and so they began searching for the perfect vehicle to take them on their dream trip. Around the world. Günther told us, “We have worked all our lives and there comes a moment where we see our children have travelled more than us… and we needed to change that”.

ADVERTISEMENT
SCROLL TO CONTINUE

THE VEHICLE… AND THE TRIP
Enter ‘Dagi’ or the bush-taxi (buschtaxi) as they are affectionately known in Europe. Knowing that importing a brand-new 78 Series Troop Carrier would be out of the question because of the tariffs on personal-import vehicles in Switzerland, they had to play the waiting game on the second-hand market. Eventually one was sourced from a likeminded couple who were upgrading to a full-size truck to continue their own intercontinental adventure.

The Troopy had already seen plenty of action, having been driven across South America, Africa and Iceland. Five years down the track, and the left-hand drive Toyota has now been across 25 countries with its new owners. After an overhaul of the electrics and three months of testing in Morocco, the course was set south out of Europe and into Turkey. From there, the trio crossed into Iran and then through the Pamir Mountains and then east into central Asia, via the Old Silk Road. Once they descended through the Malay archipelago, they shipped the Troopy to Perth and are now on their second lap of Australia, taking in all the sites they couldn’t fit into their first lap.

ABOVE Crossing the Pamir mountains early on in the journey

ABOVE Solitude in the Karakum desert, Turkmenistan // BELOW Shipping the car in the container to Perth

BELOW The Buschtaxi event held in Storndorf 2014

BELOW Getting on some angles in southern Laos

ADVERTISEMENT
SCROLL TO CONTINUE

THE MODIFICATIONS
Günther is proud of the unopened 1HZ engine and he is keen to keep it that way. I asked if he would ever fit a turbo to the old 4.2L and it was met with a resounding, “no”. Not that I blame him either, the Troopy may be slower than a wet weekend but it always gets them to where they need to go. As you can imagine, the engine bay is fairly stock, albeit with an upgraded yellow top battery. When they were in Melbourne nearly 12-months ago, they decided to take the opportunity to replace the gearbox and renew the suspension.

Protecting the front, an ARB winch compatible bar provides provision for the winch and the pair of 12-inch LED bars. In a move that won’t sit well with local authorities they have left their high-lift jack mounted on top of the bull bar. Improved traction off-road is via ARB air lockers.


BELOW You know you have been to some places when there are four languages on your fuel cap!

ABOVE An investment in comfort… these Recaro seats are the best I have ever sat in.

BELOW The little emblem I first mistook for an ambulance symbol at a distance. Apparently that’s isn’t the first time that has happened, as Rashida has had to play nurse several times while travelling through dense jungle when injured individuals approached the Troopy

BELOW Left-hand drive must make for some weird looks across at the traffic lights

ABOVE A little mascot of their travels through south east Asia

BELOW The Swiss plates attract some attention on the road

Arguably the most striking feature on this LandCruiser is the pop-top camper. A must for long-distance travel, Rashida told me the convenience and ease of set-up as being her two most important features. Not ones to waste any space, the roof of the camper is adorned with a 200W solar panel and a Top-Box for extra storage. Interior space is at a premium, so the three Howling Moon awnings add valuable living space, especially in bad weather. Externally, the rear of the vehicle features a dual rear tyre carrier, because two spares make sense (and you can read more about this here). Tucked up underneath the rear is a long-range sub tank, which increases the touring range.

Open up the rear doors and you can see this is much more than just another Troopy camper conversion; this is Günther and Rashidas’ home away from home. Personal possessions and ingenious storage solutions fill every nook and cranny. 100L of water feeds the sink and food is kept cold thanks to the 65L Dometic fridge/freezer located next to the storage compartments that line the driver’s side wall. Tucked between the rear living quarters and the cabin is the electrical heart of the Troopy; 200Ah lithium LiFeMnPo batteries. A Multi-Plus 1200W inverter and PCM4 battery monitor make sure the system is running perfectly, as the system needs to deliver clean power to support the specialized gear that they are running up front. For data logging, mapping and photo storage a PC-8 computer is hard-mounted between the seats and outputs to the screen mounted next to the driver. Additionally an all-round video system from Luis and the usual array of wireless radio technology connect the Troopy to the outside world.

FINAL THOUGHTS
It is no small feat to drive your vehicle around the world. Wherever they ship the Troopy to next, whether it’s the Amazon or the Angolan plains, you’ll be able to follow their adventures at their blog or over on Instagram @globediscovers. Safe travels from all of us here at Unsealed 4X4.

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