In late February the VMP team undertook a journey of epic proportions, in which we crossed six countries, covering 2103 miles in 10 days. That may not sound like a whole lot of miles, but every day was packed with research, photography and related work making it quite a feat.
Starting in Wales, we made it to Dover and crossed the river without incident but arriving on the other side we realised that we didn’t have a European satnav in the car, the manufacturer later confessing to this oversight. This just highlights how dependent we have become on these little electronic marvels, but some good old-fashioned map books came to the rescue and a TomTom satnav was purchased later.
France, Holland and Belgium were negotiated and soon the Autobahns of Germany beckoned, where swift passage to Stuttgart was made. The purpose of this destination was to conduct research in the Porsche Archive for a new book and to pay a visit to the new Mercedes-Benz Museum amongst a few other things. Stuttgart is a great city and has a lot to offer, its well worth a visit.
On Monday 28th February we bid our hotel farewell, and headed for Switzerland and the Geneva Motor Show, but not via the great motorways as we had been told to take the Schwarzwald Horchstrasse (Black Forest Highway). For those of you who haven’t driven this piece of tarmac, put it on your bucket list now, but make sure you have a Porsche 911 under your butt. The roads in Europe are generally pretty good because the various governments there actually invest in their infrastructure, but this particular stretch of road is like finding a bolt of silk cloth in a canvas factory – it’s the best of the best!
Eventually we made it into Alpine kingdom of Switzerland where the border authorities quickly relieved us of €35 for the privilege of entering their country. Perhaps our government should impose a similar tax on all foreign cars entering the UK, it might help pay for the upkeep of our roads.