We eagerly started our journey on Thursday 21 April in the city of Santiago de Chile. The first stop was at the company Enel X where we were met by Jean Paul Zalaquett Falaha, Electric Mobility Manager for Latin America. He was very happy to meet us and to get into this new Volkswagen vehicle, which is not yet available for sale in the country. It is for this very reason that on every street we drive down, people stare at this marvel of technology.
However, at this point we encountered the first obstacle to continue our journey: when charging energy we discovered an incompatibility in the connection ports of the Enel X terminal to recharge the ID4 GTX on the other side of the mountain range.
Since the charging centres for electric vehicles are not the same in Chile and Argentina, we go to one of the same company’s suppliers to make the necessary adapter. This procedure takes up some of our time and makes us nervous, as it requires specialised technicians, and while we wait for them to arrive it starts to get dark. In the meantime we take the opportunity to plan the route, create backup plans, organise technical equipment, and also to eat some delicious sandwiches called “chacareros”. After a tense couple of hours, the work is finally done and the complex device is handed over to us. Time is short, so our mission must continue.
We moved on for a final test of the cable in the centre of the capital under the Plaza de Armas in Santiago. Our car stands out on the motorway, so we took the opportunity to record it at its maximum splendour and speed. Its lights and design do not go unnoticed in traffic. After our final test and as the night was beginning to fall, we set off along the Los Libertadores highway in the direction of the Enjoy Casino near the city of Los Andes to do our last electric recharge before heading to Argentina. Unfortunately, and to round off a dizzying day and a start full of surprises, we learn that the Los Libertadores border crossing is temporarily closed, due to recent snowfall causing ice on the road, low visibility and traffic hazards on the route.
We have no choice but to stop; we will have to spend the night in a hotel in Los Andes, waiting to continue our adventure on wheels.