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Old 01-12-2018, 07:24 AM   #1
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VivaLaVida's first European trip!

Hey everyone,

Time to start a thread to report VivaLaVida's first European trip.

I imported her to Europe in October 2016 and needed more than 10 months to get her registered in Switzerland. Ten months of paper work with custom first, then technical inspection, then homologation autorities, five attempts to omologation and technical inspection to finally get the registration. What a nightmare!

As soon as she had numbers, I decided to go for a two weeks trip with my familly through France and Italy.

We started going over the Parpaillon Pass in French Alps.

1. Almost reaching the tree limit.






2. VivaLaVida's taking altitude.






3. The trail leading up.






4. Lanscape looks like Colorado Mountains by places.






5. Reaching the pass over 9'000 feet elevation.






6. The tunnel at the pass.






7. Panorama of the other side. You can see the trail on the left.






8. Quite narrow by places.






9. What a landscape!






10. Shadows...






11. Italian Alps so close...






12. Nice boondocking site close to a small chapel






to be continued...
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Old 01-12-2018, 08:53 AM   #2
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I've missed your trip reports Claude!

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Old 01-12-2018, 09:37 AM   #3
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Fantastic, parts of the world I've never seen, thanks I look forward to more.
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Old 01-12-2018, 10:32 AM   #4
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So excited to see and hear about the rest! Let the adventures continue...
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Old 01-12-2018, 02:43 PM   #5
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Very cool! Thanks for the photos. I'm adding that to my list for the next time we're in that area. Not sure the rental car company will approve, though :-) We have driven the Col de Sarenne on the backside of Alpe d'Huez on a few trips, but it wasn't that remote (although it was pretty rough as it was in May and technically it wasn't yet cleared for the season).
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Old 01-12-2018, 05:40 PM   #6
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Simply awesome.
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Old 01-12-2018, 11:57 PM   #7
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WOWOWOWOWOWOW! That sure doesn't look like Kansas anymore(Wizard of Oz reference)!! LOL! Maybe a super tame AK eh?! GREAT to see your pics! Keep them coming! What are some of the 'things' you had to do to be legal/pass the 'dreaded' "homologation" (and yes had to look that one up, tough Govt. type board that has to a approve going through rough standards etc, is what I got out of it)process...man tough European standards! Anyway, keep those pics coming Pschitt!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 01-13-2018, 03:46 AM   #8
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Thanks guys.

Chris, about the registration process here in Switzerland, it was really difficult, more than I expected.

First of all, you have to know that here in Switzerland, every modification done to a vehicule has to be homologated. For example, if you want to change the wheels, you're not allowed to chose wheels which aren't homologated for your vehicule. So basically, it's absolutely impossible to register a 4WD converted van here.

But anyway, there is a special way that allows it. It's a custom low that allows a foreigner moving to live in the country to bring his personnal stuff without having to respect all standards. This law is also applicable for Swiss people who lived more than one full year out of the country and wo are coming back. That's what I used to import VivaLaVida here. While every vehicle must have an official type number in order to be registered, in that special import, it gets a X status and thus the vehicle don't have to conform to a specific homologation file.

Anyway, even with the X Type, every vehicle have to conform to Swiss security specs which are very detailed and severe. Basically, I had to delete the bull bar of the front bumper, delete my HID headlight conversion, install white position lights instead of oranges, install tail lights in the rear bumper that give larger angle view, lower de rear bumper with a havy duty bar to avoid cars to finish under the van in some rear collision, change the parking break for one on the drive shaft to get more efficiency, and several other things. The most challenging point was to homologate rear security belt and sofa. Had to go twice to the Swiss certification service to get those homologated after a full rebuilt of their fastening points with installation of thick counter-plates.

All together, it was a quite expensive process, more than 9,000 $$ at the end, not to mention the Atlantic crossing... But at the end, I'm so happy to have VivaLaVida here, the only such vehicle in Switzerland excepted Andrew's van also registered here since two months.

Will continue this thread with other pictures soon...
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Old 01-13-2018, 07:02 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pschitt View Post
Chris, about the registration process here in Switzerland, it was really difficult, more than I expected.
Well, on the bright side, at least you didn't have to convert it to right-hand drive like @sherrifdoug did for Australia! :-)
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Old 01-13-2018, 08:12 AM   #10
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Wow.


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