Test all limits in the Nissan Navara
Test all limits in the Nissan Navara

Not just a car

For most people, a car can be just a tool or a form of transport, but as BOET BOTES explains, for him it’s the living embodiment of his passion for overlanding.

My ride has been given many names, from wyntrein to brandweerwa and even Mazdarati… the list goeson. One name stuck though, and now even my closefriends call her ‘Die Rooi Lorrie’, even though she isactually maroon in colour.

Every trip I undertake gives me insight into what works and what doesn’t and as a result, my dream rig has changed dramatically over the past seven years. The most useful modification is, hands down, the BunduTop rooftop tent from BunduTec. It’s quick and easy to set up and sleeps very comfortably. The new suspension from Camil was also money well spent. It has greatly improved on- and off-road handling, as well as stability on bad corrugation roads. Apart from lifting the vehicle there is also less wear and tear on the driving components.

My truck has been the source of great memories, from quick weekend getaways to long adventures. It’s hard to pick my favourite, but a trip to Botswana with my dad stands out. We travelled to amazing places like Khama Rhino Sanctuary, Makgadikgadi Pans, Maun, Planet Baobab, and Nata Bird Sanctuary, to name but a few. However, things took an unexpected turn. Although we were warned about an ugly thunderstorm/cyclone brewing off the coast of Mozambique and possibly pushing towards Botswana, we decided to risk it and go on our trip anyway as we had already booked our campsites… we are adventurous (some would say crazy) after all! Our decision came back to bite us, though. We did not have a single day without rain.

Needless to say, we were the only campers, and just to make our trip a bit more entertaining, our rigs started to show strain from all the water and mud. Aircons stopped working. Speedometer cables broke. Brakes failed. Never before had I seen so much water and by the time we got to our final campsite we were fed up… we opted for a chalet. All the challenges aside, it was a trip I will never forget, and I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

Thinking about a dream trip, I‘d say to Madagascar might top that wet Botswana trip. I’ll load the old girl on a ship and send her over so that we can explore and tour the island to our hearts’ content. It’s not a regular bucket list trip, but ever since I can remember, I have wanted to see and experience Madagascar.

My bakkie is a driving storybook with dents and scars to show for it, a home away from home. She takes me places that most other people only see in magazines and on TV. More than that, though, she reminds me of all the precious moments spent with my dad – camping, travelling, fishing, and much more. She is a one-of-a-kind 4×4.”

VEHICLE: 1999 Mazda Magnum 2.5TDI 4×4 (Die Rooi Lorrie)

OWNER: Boet Botes

MODIFICATIONS:

• BF Goodrich KO2 30×9.50 R15 on Sahara Rims

• Camil suspension

• Front replacement bumper

• Ratel snorkel

• Bush deflector cables

• HB Performance stainless steel boost pipes and 63mm stainless steel free-flow exhaust

• Upgraded intercooler

• Warn M5000 winch

• Hella SuperNovas 9-inch spotlights

• Front Runner roof rack

• Front Runner 45-litre water tank

• BunduAwn 360

• BunduTop rooftop tent, BunduAnnex and Bundu Suite

• Custom canopy, kitchen unit and two custom drawer systems

• CTEK D250SA dual battery management system and 150W inverter

• ARB extended diff breathers

• 180 litres/min air compressor

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