While rock and roll may have killed the radio star it was Covid that severely injured the overland adventures but, with the spectre of that dreadful disease in check, Nissan is embarking on an epic journey from its headquarters in Rosslyn, Pretoria to Cairo.

Soon, a group of intrepid drivers will embark on an epic eight-country tour that will take them right up the length of the continent, all the way to Cairo. Dubbed Nissan Daring Africa 2024, the expedition will visit Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi, Tanzania and Kenya before ending in Egypt.

Our very own Alan R will be on the first leg of the journey and will file plenty of video footage of the expedition.

Nissan is only automotive manufacturer to have wholly owned manufacturing plants in Egypt and South Africa, the Japanese automotive manufacturer has been in Africa for more than 60 years – and making vehicles in Africa for as long from its Rosslyn plant, which today is the company’s LCV manufacturing hub for the entire continent, complimented by its plant in Cairo, Egypt, which is its passenger vehicle assembly centre.

Represented in every country on the continent, Nissan recently opened up new markets, bringing north Africa into the Nissan Africa fold for the first time in the company’s 90 year history.

“It’s all part of our mid-term growth strategy, to unlock the potential that this continent has as the world’s last automotive frontier by providing the best line-up of models to answer Africa’s mobility needs in a sustainable, safe and aspirational way,” says Sherief Eldessouky, Nissan Africa managing director.

“This odyssey from the African home of the Navara is a wonderful celebration of this vehicle,” he says. “It’s all-new and built right here in Rosslyn, by Africans for Africans.”

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Since the end of last year, Nissan revealed its expansion plans for the export of the South African built Navara to the new markets including Algeria and Libya, with the Navara’s debut in Egypt planned shortly.

“This initiative is also a great opportunity for us to reconnect with people and places that this incredible company has been servicing for so long with such great success,” says Eldessouky.

The Navaras will be accompanied on their odyssey by a Nissan X-Trail acting as a support vehicle, which will also give the X-Trail an opportunity to prove its adventure credentials on some of Africa’s highways.

At the same time, the expedition is aiming to breathe life into the concept of the African Continental Free Trade Area and show how the automotive sector holds the key to unlock the potential of the African Century.

Nissan Africa marketing director Stefan Haasbroek, adds: “We recognised the Navara will be bought both by fleets and by individuals and this is a vehicle that has proven itself to be as useful working on the road during the week as it is for relaxing during the weekend.”

Colin Windell

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