EVLN: Wakker's EV trek around the world> (repaired in Indonesia)

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EVLN: Wakker's EV trek around the world> (repaired in Indonesia)

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Meet the man driving around the world in an electric car (who’s stuck in
7th March 2018  Max Walden

Wiebe Wakker and the Blue Bandit in Brunei. Source: Plug Me In/Facebook



Wiebe Wakker and the Blue Bandit in Brunei. Source: Plug Me In/Facebook

Wakker crosses the border from India into Burma. Source: Supplied/Plug Me In

Wakker with his car in a workshop in Surabaya, Indonesia. Source: Supplied/
Plug Me In

Sidoarjo, Jawa Timur, Indonesia
    plugmeintravelYesterday when I hit the water and inspected the car
Ayuarah approached me. He recognised me from TV in Solo. He and his wife did
everything they could to make it easier for me. They brought me to a police
station, brought food and later took me into his house were I could rest
during the night.
    Indonesian people are really helpful and making me trip a lof easier.
Also because of the request by @ridwanhr I got a lot of people who contacted
me and wanted to help me! Thanks a lof for that! I (love) Indonesia!

Plug Me In @WiebeWkkr  
It's done! The car is fixed and drives better as she's even done. Tim and
his father have done an amazing job. They worked for 6 days straight to
repair the battery and upgrade other parts. We also got a lot of help from
VW Surabaya. Thanks everyone who helped the past weeks!
09:12 - 6 Mar 2018

“HORROR, worst case scenario” is how Wiebe Wakker described his predicament.

“I’ve run into a lot of problems which I’m solving at the moment. Mechanics
from Holland need to fly in.” Stuck in Surabaya, Indonesia for more than two
months, his electric vehicle dubbed the Blue Bandit had broken down after
making it all the way from Amsterdam in the Netherlands.

The epic journey prior – across Europe, the Middle East and Asia – saw him
relying upon the generosity of strangers for food, shelter and electricity
to recharge his vehicle.

The Plug Me In project, as Wakker has called it, aims to promote
sustainability and demonstrate that renewable technologies can replace old

Plug Me In | Trailer

“Sustainability is not just solar panels or green agriculture. You can do
really cool things with sustainability,” Wakker told Asian Correspondent in
a phone interview, noting that the idea was inspired by his love of travel
and the need to complete a final assignment for his events management degree
at the Amsterdam University of the Arts.

“I told my teacher for my final project I want to travel around the world.
He said ‘you’re crazy’,” Wakker recalled. Yet a few months later, he was on
the road.

Asked if the prolonged breakdown in Indonesia undermined the credibility of
electric vehicles he said: “I drove 60,000 km so far and 31 countries
without having major issues. This is a very old car and from 2009, custom
made. It requires some specific knowledge to fix the car, whereas if you’d
bought a production line electric you could fix it anywhere.”

“There’s actually less that can go wrong with an electric car because
there’s less moving parts,” he added.

Experts from the Netherlands are now in Surabaya helping to fix the Blue
Bandit, the costs of their travel and expenses being covered by a Plug Me In
crowdfunding page.

“I really like the countries where things are a bit different to Western
countries, India, Myanmar, Thailand and Indonesia as well. If you bring an
electric car into country like these, it feels like pioneering,” Wakker

Iran, though, was his favourite. “I didn’t know so much about this country.
I was really surprised by the hospitality, it was a beautiful country also,”
he said, adding that: “people there are so kind, so generous. They take me
into their home so then they bring their cousins, then their cousins’
brothers, so then I have to tell my story 20 times a day. It can be a bit
challenging to travel alone.”

SEE ALSO: South Australia and Tesla team up again for world’s largest
‘virtual power plant’

The challenges haven’t been limited to the Indonesian breakdown and curious
Iranians. Wakker said that the process of organising visas and bringing a
car into 31 separate countries had been a headache.

Moreover, in more remote parts of the globe, people’s home generators only
have around 900 watts, whereas the car requires 2000 watts to charge. “In
Kalimantan (Indonesia), I was in villages looking around to factories to see
if they could help me. In parts of India, the power cuts for hours at a

With the Blue Bandit almost ready to return to the road, Wakker will head
across Bali and eastern Indonesia towards Timor Leste, prior to shipping it
across to Darwin in northern Australia. After this, he will begin the final
leg across the continent to Sydney.

Wakker reflected that many countries he’d visited in Asia still had a lot of
work to do to reach basic levels of sustainability. “Indonesia is on the
equator and there is so much sun, but you don’t see any solar panels. It’s a
pity, I hope that people will realise that there are better alternatives,”
he said.

Nevertheless, he added, “I find it interesting that in every country there
is something going on in terms of sustainability. There are always people
working on it.”

Update as this piece went to publication:
6 Mar 2018  Plug Me In @WiebeWkkr  It's done! The car is fixed and drives
better as she's even done. Tim and his father have done an amazing job. They
worked for 6 days straight to repair the battery and upgrade other parts. We
also got a lot of help from VW Surabaya. Thanks everyone who helped the past
weeks! ...
[© asiancorrespondent.com]
More  Wakker  from the evdl archive

Jaguar is adding artificial motor sounds to its all-electric I-Pace
Mar. 7th 2018  The quietness of electric motors is one of many advantages
that electric vehicles have over cars powered by internal combustion
engines, but some automakers don't necessarily see it exactly like that.
This is why Jaguar is even adding artificial motor sounds to its new
all-electric I-Pace ...

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