An Adventurous Demonstration Of Kia's Off Road Resilience

By Carl Drotsky

Kia Motors' branches in Portugal and Argentina worked together in December 2010 for a courageous promotion scheme that would rivet Kia clients from nations around the world. A team, consisting of biologist Paula Goncalves, journalist Alexandre Correia and photojournalist Paulo Calisto, was strategically put together to try out the 32nd annual Dakar Rally racing route on the exact same pathway competitors would be driving on in the following month. This race's name comes from the very first race in which the destination was Dakar, Senegal.

The 2011 competition was set up to start in Buenos Aires, Argentina and to continue all the way through Bolivia and Chile to finish right back in Buenos Aires. The notion behind this attempt was to show that a Kia car could handle well not only on streets and highways but off-road as well. Supporters were able to stay up to date throughout the trip and were even tempted to plan a Dakar course adventure for themselves.

The three Portuguese nationals rode in a Sorento 4WD, which was provided by Kia Argentina, while enjoying every bit of their journey through a variety of landscapes where the official rally would take place in January 2011. Each day of the expedition, pictures were being taken and comprehensive notes documented. This gave web fans a frequent viewpoint of the route's layout as well as tips and advice for potential drivers of the Dakar Rally course.

The course consisted of not only parts of Bolivia and Argentina but also the northern segment of the Atacama Desert in Chile. The Sorento remained entirely unharmed till the end of the journey after 985 litres of fuel, 19 days of driving and only one changed tire. The 4,620-mile expedition through South America demonstrated the car manufacturer's steadiness and spirit for endless miles and tough terrain.

After the victorious expedition, Kia Portugal decided to create a journey image presentation to be set up in dealerships around their nation. This included a reproduced model of a Sorento as well as a variety of the most outstanding images captured throughout the drive in Argentina, Bolivia and Chile. The majority of Portuguese Kia dealers endeavored to present the model and photo exhibition in their dealerships for more than six months to spread a passion for adventurous travel amongst Kia's customers.

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