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Around the World Offroad in A Mercedes G-Class SUV

Chances are that the average person buys a Mercedes-Benz G-Class SUV to carry their kids and groceries with a little more panache than their neighbors. In fact, it wouldnt be surprising if the only time the average G500 owner goes offroad is when they accidentally drive in to a ditch.

It turns out that Gunter Holtorf is not your average G-Class buyer. The 77 year-old German completed an epic road-trip with a Mercedes diesel variant of the GD, racking up 550,000 miles across 215 countries and taking 26 years to do so.

At 51, Holtorf had everything that one could dream about. But something was amiss. With a new promise of giving his life a second chance, Holtorf resigned from his career at Lufthansa Airlines, bought a Mercedes-Benz G-Class SUV and set out on a road trip to South Africa. After braving unfathomable hurdles and driving across Africa in his wagon that he lovingly nicknamed Otto, Gunther and his fourth wife Christine, motivated by their newfound wanderlust, decided to create a world record by
literally traversing the world.

Otto was not an ordinary SUV, but a loving child that the couple took everywhere they went. The three were a family. Together they travelled to South America, North America, Asia, Australia and Europe. From the base camp of Mount Everest to the nerve-racking jungles of Amazon, Otto braved it all.

Holtorf had no digital devices with him on his travel, relying instead on his diary to record their travel experiences. They even cooked their own food on a small gas stove that they carried in their truck. To save money, they never rented motels and almost never left Otto alone. Otto was like a living entity for the couple and it was shipped to over 41 destinations at an expense of over half a million Dollars.

Holtorf continued his journey after Christine died from a long battle with Cancer as she wanted him to. His love for her was immense and after she passed away, he hung her photograph in the rear-view mirror. It was last year in 2014, that he finally gave up but with memories of a lifetime and experiences that would sound impossible to many.
Otto has broken all records and has covered a total distance equivalent to two complete trips around the world and it still has the original engine, gearbox and axles. It stands tall at the Mercedes-Benz museum in Stuttgart, Germany. His master, Gunter Holtorf also returned to his homeland.

One thing is sure. Holtorf lived out a dream and they type of life experience that is truly remarkable and a testament to both the human spirit and the legendary build-quality and durability of the military-spec Mercedes-Benz G-Class.

Posted by: Farra Majid on Sunday, March 8th, 2015 at 2:51 pm in LIFESTYLE