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“We want an unbeatable world record.”

“We want an unbeatable world record.”

Brothers Kohler (Patrick and David) and David Bruchelle (right) built an electric agricultural vehicle.picture: Claudia von Planta

an interview

Three Swiss inventors created an electric agricultural vehicle. They now want to climb the highest traversable mountain in the world.

08/27/2022, 12:24 PM08/27/2022, 13:02

Patrick Togwiler
Patrick Togwiler


We already made a good year ago an interview. Your Alpen-Tesla was still in its infancy at the time. What happened since then?
Patrick Kohler:
The route is due to be approved at the beginning of September. In other words: the vehicle is ready.

Interview from 2021

It’s easy to say. I suppose the road was rocky.
There were some major obstacles, yes. We probably had to solve about three times the problems originally planned and install too many small parts. The control program was also a big box. In terms of complexity, but also in financial terms. But we’ve found a great partner at the startup Motics.

Finally: Terren’s first test drive

I suppose street law wouldn’t really be cheap either. Can you still get the money?
We have from the Federal Office of energy They obtained funding of 250,000 Swiss francs. This funding allows us to complete the prototype, which is based on the Aebi Schmidt vector, and test it in real operation. But from a private point of view, the funds are slowly narrowing. We have been working without pay for more than three years. Savings are more than just running out.

Are you still struggling with part time jobs?
No. David and I are working full time on the project, and my brother is working away for another three days. But it actually doesn’t exist.

After agreeing to the road, you want to fly high with your vehicle.
It’s about breaking the world record for the height of legal vehicles on the roads. Ojos del Salado in Chile is suitable for this. We will go up there.

Explanation of the world record attempt (English)

With an electric car. How do you charge a car in isolation?
The car can be charged normally. But there are no more power lines in the desert. Solar panel charging available. We have 20 panels, 10 of which are on the roof, with a total output of 7.4 kW. We use this to charge the battery at 90 kWh. Previous expeditions required 1,500 liters of diesel to score. Because of the low temperatures, they were never allowed to turn off the engine. He worked 24 hours a day. Facts like this are motivating, of course. We want to show that there is a better way.

I assume you charge during the day and drive at night?
Approximately. But we do have a lot of time in the desert anyway, because we constantly need breaks to acclimatize.

This car should do the trick: Terren's prototype.  Later, the car will promote electricity in agriculture.

This car should do the trick: Terren’s prototype. Later, the car will promote electricity in agriculture.Photo: Claudio von Planta

What is the current world record?
I think somewhere around 6700 meters. The height of the mountain is 6900 meters. We probably won’t make it all the way, but we want to get as high as possible. So high that we can’t be defeated anymore.

record forever?
We want to show what is possible to ordinary people like us. Our project started with a blank white paper. Today there is a roadworthy electric agricultural vehicle in our garage. Our mission is: Taking new and daring paths pays off.

When do you want to start?
Supposed to start in mid-October. Then the car gets on board for 40 days. Unfortunately, costs have also exploded in this area. Transportation, for example, costs more than twice that. So we are still looking for sponsors.

Where can I register?
on our home page ( Just scroll down. There you will find our contact details.

A sponsor built a camping crate for the three inventors

Are we here at Switzerland Have the opportunity to track your benchmark attempt?
We will try to contact Starlink perhaps. Above all, there will be a documentary after trying to register. We are accompanied by an international film team led by Claudio von Planta.

I Know From This He’s been on a motorbike a few times with co-star Ewan McGregor and his friend Charlie Borman.
exactly. Among other things, he was a photographer on “Long Way Round” and “Long Way Down”. Most recently in “Long Way Up,” when the two drove from Tierra del Fuego to Los Angeles on electric motorcycles. Claudio’s photos already have a complete transformation of our project.

Then we have no choice but to wish you good luck and great success! And even if you drive uphill: we’ll stay close to you.

Everything worth watching YouTube videos here. You learn all about converting a car – and the very long working days of the three Swiss.

Here is Claudio Von Planta’s YouTube channel.