Get Your Whip: Plug-In Rally At Horse And Buggy Speeds

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt
get your whip plug in rally at horse and buggy speeds

Munich, Germany, to St. Moritz, Switzerland. It can be a scenic afternoon ride. The nicest route, shown here would take you very leisurely four hours these days. Before the car was invented, it would have taken a few days and a lot of real horses. How about with pure plug-ins? 31 participants embarked on a plug-in rally from Munich to St. Moritz. It started on August 1. It ended on August 5th. Yep, five days. When I was young, I did that in two easy days on a bicycle. The electric cars took the better part of the week.

To their credit, the battery-powered rally-cars mastered a course of 780 kilometers (484 miles), says AUTO BILD. They must have taken some scenic detours. Or had a hard time finding out-of-the-way hotels that offered enough sockets for 31 cars to suck from over night. Straight line ( and quite beautiful, I tell you) would be 279 km, or just 173 miles. It also has some wicked mountain passes …

Even with a carefully planned route and four overnight stays, each driver had to follow a careful strategy “to not get stranded: Step on the ‘gas’ only if absolutely necessary, re-gen as much as possible: scoot downhill and happily watch the green bar grow,” says AUTO BILD. The rally was called e-miglia. It was a few hundred km short of 1,000 km, but who’s counting.

Only the “€100,000 Teslas with 7,500 laptop batteries in the back could do 300 kilometers and more” says the paper. And it continues:

“A band of dedicated idealists is fighting for the great cause of electric mobility. One would think this should be the job of the automakers. Those keep their lordly (or embarrassed) distance and leave the pioneering to the man of independent means.”

Join the conversation
  • Herb Herb on Aug 12, 2011

    This is indeed a fantastic route! If you feel inclined, you can go ahead from St. Moritz to Lake Como, offering even more scenic views. So far, the slowest vehicles I have encountered on this route were Dutch cars with trailers. But progress never stops... (BTW: I would not recommend this tour by bicycle. The hills might turn out really nasty without proper propulsion. Oh, yes and avoid the autobahn when on bicycle.)

    • Bertel Schmitt Bertel Schmitt on Aug 12, 2011

      That's why I budgeted 2 days for the bicycle. Behind Garmisch, it gets a bit hilly. I grew up near the letter A and did most of that route by bicycle. Not all the way to St. Moritz - too expensive. The route can be done completely Autobahn-free, Google just won't draw it. No problem at all. I could still do it without looking at the map even once.

  • Niky Niky on Aug 12, 2011

    Looks fantastic. It's always nice to get out and do some scenic driving at a slow pace. What wouldn't be nice is finding an extension cord that will reach from your hotel room to your car...

  • FreedMike Needs a few more HP to really spice things up...
  • Oberkanone Absolute insanity on our public roads! A danger to society. Bravo Dodge!
  • Lou_BC Cool car but 35k USD?
  • Lou_BC I've owned and ridden many litre class sport bikes. Those bikes render anything on 4 wheels boring. This is cool but even if I had the cash, it would be a hard pass.
  • Jeff S Some of us don't care either way we are not into this type of car. Most of these will be stored in garages waiting for their value to go up. As someone above noted this is an old body style which is retro 70s Challenger which after researching it came out in the 2008 MY which means a long run for a model that is in its 16th year. I have always liked these but if I bought one I would not spend this kind of money on one probably get the V-6 version and use it as a family car but then I am not into drag racing or muscle cars. For the type of car it is it has a decent rear seat and not too bad of a trunk. Most of us are not going to spend 100k for any vehicle at least currently so its not something most of us will buy and stick in a garage waiting for its value to increase. I am glad that these editions came out for those who can afford them and it keeps a little more color into what has become a very dull vehicle market but then with age I pick the dull appliance like reliable vehicle because that's what I need. Impressive car but not for me.