Fiat Sedici takes Angelo d’Arrigo to 4,300 metres above sea level

Fiat Sedici takes Angelo d’Arrigo to 4,300 metres above sea level  

on 03/22/2006

Source: Fiat

To soar above the planet’s tallest peaks, setting new world records and exploring the resources of humankind and technology: this is the global project conceived by Angelo d’Arrigo, several times world free flight hang gliding champion.

His latest venture pitted him against the Aconcagua which, at 6,962 metres, dominates the Andes – the second tallest mountain chain in the world. Here, on December 31 2005, Angelo d’Arrigo set a new world altitude record, reaching 9,100 metres with his hang glider.

To reach the base camp (at 4,300 metres) on this magnificent mountain, Angelo d’Arrigo crossed Patagonia and the entire South American continent as far as the border between Chile and Argentina. With him on this journey was the Fiat Sedici, the new 4x4, whose versatility the athlete had already come to respect while training on the tallest active volcano in Europe – Etna. This new model combines the driving pleasure and handling of a compact car with the performance of an SUV, and features an all-new, selectable 4x4 drive system, with central differential and three operating modes (2WD, AUTO and LOCK).

The Aconcagua initiative is yet another stage in Angelo d’Arrigo’s ambitious project in his sphere of adventure, exploration and nature. In 2001, the champion flew across the Sahara by hang-glider and in 2002 he completed the first ever crossing of Siberia. Then in 2004, he flew over the highest peak on earth, Everest. In achieving this extreme goal, flying over Everest across Tibetan plateaus and the subtropical forests of Nepal, Angelo d’Arrigo set yet another record: reaching the base camp on Everest at 5,200 metres a.s.l. in two Fiat Panda 4X4s. As well as being a first for a small off-roader, this achievement was made all the more extraordinary by the fact that only minor modifications were made to the two cars, slightly recalibrating the engine management units to adapt them to the local fuel.

As his adventures take d’Arrigo to the remotest parts of the globe, reliable support and land transport have become indispensable for achieving his goals. For this very reason, Fiat Auto has been his steadfast partner in every one of these expeditions, providing vehicles to transport personnel and materials for the base camps and technological support, through the Fiat Research Centre, which has tested all the materials used in these initiatives. In particular, Angelo d’Arrigo has trained in the Aerodynamic and Climatic Tunnels at Orbassano (Turin), in simulations reproducing a varied spectrum of environmental conditions. This, the ideal place for such research, is where Fiat Auto has conducted the initial development stages of all of its cars since 1976: using experimental equipment and methods in the early days and now employing state of the art computer and digital simulation systems.

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