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-   -   Planning a trip to south africa overland and back (http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hubb/4wd-overland-travel/planning-trip-south-africa-overland-20723)

kiwijim 22 Feb 2004 12:52

Planning a trip to south africa overland and back
I'm a kiwi guy wanting to do a drive through africa. I'm going to the U.K again in april so I plan to go from there. What do need to do? I'm wanting to get a nissan patrol, landcruiser or SIII landrover what is better? Carnet what's the go with that? hoping to go for more than a year cause I am planning to work in namiba for a bit (you never know just might want to stay!) is a carnet needed or worth it. I realy want to get as much info as I can any help idea's would mean alot!

just do it, unless you have!

Toby2 22 Feb 2004 19:58

Vehicle depends on your budget and what is available. If you are looking at typical series III money then its probably a case of which particular vehicle is in better condition. However of the three mentioned, the Landcruiser and Landrover would generally be the better choices simply because you can easily get spares in Africa where as you will struggle to get Patrol parts. All three makes will be more than capable of coping with the conditions. Of the three, I would probably choose a Landcruiser ( I have a newer Landrover but I would prefer a 40 / 60 series landcruiser over a Series III landrover). Landcruisers aren't that popular in the UK which means there aren't many of them around but they are also fairly cheap. Noticed there is one for sale on the forum with all the camping gear so might be worth chasing if its in your budget.

You do need a Carnet for Africa. Do a search for other links explaining it all.

We travelled trans africa through West Africa - Central Africa - East Africa - Cape Town with a kiwi. Visas were straightforward, no particular problems.

Robbert 23 Feb 2004 02:25


Don't know what makes you think/say spare parts for Patrol are difficult in Afrika. They're definatly not more difficult then LR spare parts.

Note that when taking a leafspring vehicle, 'rebending seems to be the name of the game.



Toby2 23 Feb 2004 16:12

Primarily because thoughout our 8 month trans african trip I saw virtually no Patrols and certainly not in the northern 2/3rds fo the continent. I also didn't see anything in the way of Patrol parts in the auto markets. However I was in a LR, not a Patrol so I'll stand corrected if this isn't the case. I would still find it surprising if parts are available given the lack of Patrols and therefore the presumed lack of demand.

[This message has been edited by Toby2 (edited 23 February 2004).]

Robbert 23 Feb 2004 19:52

Looking around in Mali, Burkina and Ghana, there's many more signs for Nissan parts then for LR parts.
And in the end, if you really need a part, it often needs to be shipped in anyway (like the guy needing a toy 60 series oil filter (the big one), and none available in Accra), regardless LR or Nissan.



kiwijim 24 Feb 2004 11:18

nissan patrols in nz seem to have very few problems much like landcruires. Don't breakdown and drive train that just doesn't give you trouble. In the uk where I'm wanting to pick one up thay seem to have 2.8 deisel's as standard and carry up to 7 and cost less than landcruisers, lanrovers! Landrovers have such a bad rep over here you never see one with a standard motor that seems like the first thing to go! then you put in a holden 202ci (3.3lt)and replace axels for ever. Are nissan patrols that bad? any first hand experience with them?

Richard K 26 Feb 2004 07:13

for what it's worth:
met a couple transafrica (westcoast/central/ east coast) in a really worn old patrol. They had precious few mechanical issues that could be put down to design or reliability and they liked it a lot. The seats were a hell of a lot more comfy than any LR I've sat in! One complaint was the lack of ground clearance – they're low and wide which I can see being a pain on some tracks. Some underbody armour might be in order...

It depends what route you're taking, but durability, reliability and fixability are probably more important than pure off-road ability for a transafrica jaunt. I'd consider a Patrol-–especially if you know your way around one (but LR's are best : ).....)

Runner 26 Feb 2004 13:50

The Patrols Ive seen in the Sahara and offroad in Europe have been cumbersome, heavy things with lousy clearance (any car with an option to store the spare wheel underneath has to be suspect). Nice engine, but thats about it. In 2000 I spent four days pulling one of the things (newish turbodiesel) out of the dune belt in Morocco (with my Landy 110) as far as Msisi because its driver had gone down with heatstroke and the car couldnt hack the terrain.

Ive used Cruisers and Rovers in the Sahara quite a bit, Id go for a Rover every time, but they are less comfortable and slower than Cruisers, even if they are better offroad.

Toby2 26 Feb 2004 17:11

I had an older Patrol before I bought my current LR using it out in Aus. It is very capable with a strong engine and offroad was fairly impressive. On a standard one I would change the suspension to something like OME and get a 2" extra clearance on the Springs. I would also fit underbody protection but thats the same for most offroaders including my LR. In Australia they have an excellent reputation, are looking to take over from the Landcruiser as the 4x4 to have for offroading and there are lots of modified GQs competing in the major championships. Providing that the assesment above is correct that parts are available in Africa and I'm still very dubious on that claim then it might be a possibility. However a 40 or 60 series Landcruiser is still probably a better bet.

[This message has been edited by Toby2 (edited 26 February 2004).]

Robbert 26 Feb 2004 17:11

Same thing,

I'm traveling in disco, met guys in toys and patrols, and all cars seem to be fine, with so now and then a fixable problem. On a trans africa, you can choose to do extreme dune stuff, or not. I think the patrol is a rather tough vehicle, like the toy, or even a LR. Just take care of them, and pick the one you feel suits you best.


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