Iceland’s Arctic climate was the perfect backdrop for Nissan to unveil its Ariya, an electric vehicle that will attempt a 17,000-mile North Pole to South Pole adventure through the Americas in March 2023. Chris and Julie Ramsey have spent the last four years planning the odyssey that will traverse three continents and is expected to take 10 months to complete. The Ramseys are using the adventure to demonstrate the capabilities of EVs and highlight positive action against the climate crisis.
“The planning and preparation for Pole-to-Pole has been such a big part of our lives over the past four years so I am really looking forward to getting the expedition underway in March,” says Julie Ramsey, co-driver on Pole-to-Pole. “We’re going to discover so many interesting initiatives from communities and individuals who are taking positive action against climate change and I’m looking forward to sharing these experiences and stories with everyone.”
This isn’t the first EV challenge for the Ramseys. In 2016 they became the first entrants to complete the Mongol Rally in an all-electric vehicle when they piloted a modified Nissan Leaf 8,000 miles through 13 countries.
For its upcoming adventure, the Nissan Ariya’s battery and powertrain were not changed, but the EV did receive suspension upgrades and 39-inch tires from polar vehicle experts, Arctic Trucks.
“One of the things that underpins all the adventures we do is that we take a standard production EV and aim to make minimal changes to clearly demonstrate its real, everyday capabilities, regardless of where you are driving it,” says Chris Ramsey, Pole-to-Pole EV Expedition Leader. “Our Nissan Ariya is no different as the vehicle’s drivetrain and battery has remained factory standard, demonstrating just how capable and versatile the production Ariya is.”
To keep the adventure going in polar regions without power sources, a portable, renewable energy unit with a packable, lightweight wind turbine and solar panels will be towed by the Ariya. The prototype renewable energy unit is intended to harness the strong wind and longer daylight hours and will recharge the EV’s battery when the Ramseys stop to rest. An Instagram page has been set up to showcase the Ramsey’s electric vehicle journey and convey the excitement from a 17,000 mile adventure across numerous forms of terrain.
“We are doing something that has never been attempted before, a world-first, and ultimately that is what makes it so exciting,” adds Julie Ramsey.