Porsche’s Record-Breaking Ascent in a modified 911

Article display image
Article image thumbnails

Porsche’s Record-Breaking Ascent in a modified 911

In December, three-time Le Mans Champion Romain Dumas, with his dedicated support team, undertook an incredible challenge in a modified Porsche 911 running on synthetic fuel; their mission was to conquer the west ridge of Chile's Ojos del Salado volcano, reaching a breath-taking altitude of 6,734 meters above sea level, setting a new world record for cars.

This audacious feat was achieved under extreme conditions. At this altitude, the air is only about half as dense as sea level, and temperatures hover around 20 degrees below freezing. After descending from the volcano, Dumas described the experience as extraordinary and expressed his pride in achieving what no car had done before. He stated, "The 911 managed to go higher than any other earthbound vehicle in history. We reached a point where we were met by the true summit of the west ridge - we could go no higher. So, this was the maximum altitude that could be achieved. A proud moment for the whole team – and we’re grateful for the support and belief of all of our partners, each of whom made this possible."

This project marked a return for Dumas and his team to the Ojos del Salado volcano, following an exploratory run in 2022 where they had exceeded 6,000 meters. The previous record, set in 2020, reached 6,694 meters. For this monumental journey, two modified Porsche 911 models, affectionately nicknamed "Doris" and "Edith," took part, with the record-breaking achievement attributed to the lighter and more agile "Edith" variant.

The off-road-capable particular conversion was based on the current 911 Carrera 4S. The 3-litre flat-six engine remained in stock form and was paired with the standard seven-speed manual transmission. Portal axles were added to increase ground clearance to 350mm, allowing precise and gentle throttle inputs at low speeds, especially when navigating near-vertical slopes and rocky terrain. The cars were equipped with lightweight Aramid fibre underbody protection to facilitate smooth traversal over rocks.

One notable feature of the lead car was its steer-by-wire technology, which provided the precision and detailed feedback needed for Dumas to place the car precisely where required during the ascent, even on precarious slopes.

Safety was a top priority throughout the expedition. The team took two weeks to acclimate to the extreme altitudes, gradually increasing their height daily. Two doctors were an integral part of the team to ensure the team's well-being in the remote location and mitigate the risk of altitude sickness and other health issues.

Unlike in 2022, the team encountered relatively little snow at the higher levels of the volcano, but the challenge remained formidable, including navigating through boulder fields. Their journey culminated with a summit reach on Saturday, December 2, at 15h58, followed by a descent to their base camp over a thousand meters below the next day.

In conclusion, Romain Dumas and his team's record-breaking ascent of the Ojos del Salado volcano in a modified Porsche 911 is a testament to human ingenuity, engineering prowess, and the unyielding spirit of exploration. This extraordinary achievement pushes the boundaries of what is possible in the world of automotive adventure, inspiring us to dream bigger and reach greater heights, both figuratively and literally.

Buy new or used vehicles at a great price.
We put you back in control, make a single request and get up to 3 quotes from dealers nationally.
  • Choose your perfect car
  • Dealers come to you with their best offers
  • Compare offers and buy with confidence
Quick Quote

Are you ready to pick your perfect ride?

Related articles

More porsche news