2019 Baja XL... who's in?

#16
Post 1.. we are prepping a 2006 Cayenne S. We have lots of stuff to still decide on, but the car seems pretty solid. In a week or two we will get the race tires and roof basket mounted. Haven't finalized nav stuff yet.
Good choice! For Nav we’re currently evaluating a hybrid of E32 maps and the LeadNav app loaded onto an iPad mini permanently mounted in the vehicle. Gaia GPS is pretty good too but LeadNav is basically designed for this type of rally. A Garmin will be backup.

The Cayenne's strong points are the air suspension, competent AWD/4WD, fuel capacity and and overall strength. And POWER! Weaknesses are the air suspension (this depends who you believe), complexity, and sparsity of aftermarket upgrades. Fuel economy isn't fantastic but compared to other overlanding vehicles I think it's probably pretty good.
It’s interesting you bring up air suspension. Our support vehicle is a 2005 LR3 HD and the air suspension on it makes off-roading at speed (especially on washboard) acceptable. I considered swapping them out for coil overs for this event but the air suspension is just too nice for extremely long off-roading days. So instead I’ll be rebuilding the air valve blocks and having the air suspension inspected and possibly rebuilt. I get comments from friends when riding in our rig, just how comfortable it is off-road. Add to that the full lockers in the HD version and the off-road endurance capability is there. (Will need to armor up underneath though, especially around the air compressor and fuel tank.)

Gas mileage, however. Ooooof. It sucks. Bad. Will be carrying several jerry cans as supplement.

We has also seriously considered two larger (3-row, 7-seat) vehicles:

- Jeep Commander, for the fantastic 4WD. Not great on fuel, and the second row was pretty cramped to make room for the 3rd row. The windshield is very vertical and far away, which is good for keeping the sun out of your eyes but probably not so good for outward visibility. Reliable as far as we could tell. Small gas tank.

- Toyota Sequoia, for the legendary Toyota reliability. Better 2nd row seats (captain's chairs on some) and of course lots of space. Decent AWD but I think not as serious as the others. Fuel economy no better than the others.

All were 200x models for a blend of newness and affordability. The Cayenne won due to our experience with Touaregs and also on an emotional level. It has so far impressed us (although I'm on the east coast and the car is in CA).
There’s something about the emotional tug of particular rigs, isn’t there? This distance of competition really requires you to feel a connection and trust with your vehicle, so I totally get that. It’ll be cool to see your Cayenne out there deep in the Baja!
 
#18
It’s interesting you bring up air suspension. Our support vehicle is a 2005 LR3 HD and the air suspension on it makes off-roading at speed (especially on washboard) acceptable.
Some of the guys went into this assuming we would swap for coilovers. My take on it was that AS allows us to have clearance when we need it but - more importantly - be lower and safer the rest of the time. We will be loaded... four guys and stuff. We're only about 550 pounds from GVWR now and there's lots of stuff on the list without a weight on it.

I have been playing a bit with Gaia and I have pretty much figured we'd be running an iPad Mini (plus one or two other things). We know about LeadNav but have been told it doesn't do that much for you until you are pretty highly invested. Still investigating.
 
#19
Some of the guys went into this assuming we would swap for coilovers. My take on it was that AS allows us to have clearance when we need it but - more importantly - be lower and safer the rest of the time. We will be loaded... four guys and stuff. We're only about 550 pounds from GVWR now and there's lots of stuff on the list without a weight on it.
It’s an excellent point. I’m sold on it—even with the concerns over reliability (which, I’ve never had a problem with in putting over 100,000 miles on it, other than the time I bumped the compressor and had to replace the bracket).

I have been playing a bit with Gaia and I have pretty much figured we'd be running an iPad Mini (plus one or two other things). We know about LeadNav but have been told it doesn't do that much for you until you are pretty highly invested. Still investigating.
It seems that way. I used it on a central NV run we did last weekend. Nothing major, but def off the beaten path, and it worked okay (until it hit its map download limit).

I’m going to see about converting the E32 maps into the format that LeadNav accepts and then it *should* have true offline map access. I’ll let you know if I find success with that plan.
 
#22
I purchased the SD mapping , a bit pricey but the work is done, and will run it on my garmin, i also have an inreach that is tied into an ipad with gaia, & lastly we will carry paper maps the baja almanac
 
#23
We're not sure. Bamako is very sparse with the details on this and loading it the day before the rally isn't my idea of planning. It's unclear whether this will only be loaded into a GPS or if it can go into Mapsource/Basecamp/whatever. We will be running two tablets anyway (Surface and iPad), and have plenty of manpower for processing the roadbook, so the mystery file may not be that useful to us.

I personally would pass on it but the rest of the team may decide to go for it.

Muleshoer; can you tell us how the integration between the inReach and Gaia works? Are you just running Earthmate on the iPad and letting the inReach provide the location data and messaging, or is there more to it?
 
#24
I am, I really want to study and trust my nav prior to the day before the rally. E32 maps should be sufficient according to Andrew.
The free "basic map" option will be available for download 11/15 and the Orux maps software is also free from Google Play. I plan on playing with that to see how it looks. I have purchased the delux option from Bamako and already had the Baja Almanac. Debating on taking an iPad / Gaia as plan B.
 
#25
I've been looking around a lot in OSM. I have no idea how complete the set of user-supplied tracks is, but we will see. I plan to upload any relevant tracks to OSM after the event. Gaia supposedly imports from OSM... well, they say something like that, not sure about the details. I'll know in a few days once I get the chance to test it.

We went ahead and got the $50 Open BXL Full map. It may not end up being in the best format for us, but it's still a good (we hope) map of Baja and cheaper than most of the alternatives.
 

Regcabguy

Expedition Leader
#26
Would love to if we could get ULSD fuel. For now ULSD is only available north of El Rosano.
This link says 15ppm after 31-December 2018. They have blown thru every date so far - want to wait until it is actually in place. https://www.dieselnet.com/standards/mx/fuel.php
Would like to see other Cayenne's join us for the winter 2020 ALCAN 5000. Ours is at the 4:09 point in this video of the 2016 ALCAN -
ULSD is available north of Guerrero Negro. South of there LSD barged from the mainland. I don't think Pemex has the refining capability for ULSD. I believe the US provides it via a Texas pipeline. With the competition from private companies,hopefully that will change.
 
#27
After talking with Cummins we will carry extra extra fule filters
Im also carring 40 liters of extra ULSD to blend with fillups, two tank blends will get me 900 miles so we hope to minimize using LSD fuel
I understand that Pemex does not post if it is ULSD
 
#28
Well, no more entries are being accepted so if you aren't in you need to set your sights on 2021. We had a last-minute crew change but I think we are all set with paperwork complete.

The car, truck, not sure what to call it, is coming along. The roof basket is on, we have fresh lower control arms, light bar, some wiring is done, liftgate struts are new. Rally tires (32") are yet to be mounted. We are currently exploring our livery options.

For nav, we have an array of stuff:
1) Windows tablet with satellite imagery from gMapCatcher.
2) iPad Mini with Gaia and a few other nav apps. The NatGeo maps are very well regarded and I think I can load them.
3) Some sort of Garmin GPS which will probably have the "Open BXL Full" map file from Bamako.

AFAIK the free map from Bamako is still not available. I checked yesterday or the day before.
 
#29
We unfortunately have to bow out this time around. I’ve already sold the Team GPS competition ticket but still have the 4x4 or Bike Touring (non-competitive) ticket for sale if anyone’s interested.

Bummed but hoping someone else can have a killer time!
 
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