The Top Gear Botswana Special will always be treasured as the greatest Top Gear Episode in history and probably the best evidence for the need of 4×4 Hire in Botswana.
The episode challenged the 3 hilarious pranksters and ‘sometimes car experts’ Jeremy Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond and to traverse the treacherous wilds of Botswana 4×4 country.
Instead of being able to make use of a top 4×4 hire Botswana agent to book a fully equipped 4×4 safari vehicle for Botswana, the boys were given a budget of 1500 pounds and duly instructed to purchase a second hand car not designed in any way for off-road 4×4 use.
So armed with 3 fix-me-uppers the trio set off on the 1 700 km epic journey across the unforgiving Makgadigadi Pans and animal infested wilds of the Okavango Delta.
Here is a quick guide on the best options for 4×4 hire in Botswana and how renting a 4×4 from a 4×4 Botswana rental agency could have saved the Top Gear trio a few close calls.
Toyota Landcruiser 4×4
Fully equipped with 4-wheel drive, power steering, air conditioning and some kick ass tyres the Toyota Landcruiser is one of our top recommendation for 4×4 hire. Botswana’s unforgiving Makgadigadi Pans, which often had Clarkson and May digging their cars out of thick mud, would be have been a breeze in the perfectly designed Toyota Landcruiser 4×4.
Toyota Fortuner 4×4
The V6, Turbo Diesel engine of the Toyota Fortuner 4×4, which combines speed with rugged performance and has a top speed of 180 km/h is the ideal way to travel in comfort across Botswana. 4×4 hire cars don’t get any faster and the the Toyota Fortuner 4×4 would have been the ideal challenge for the Stig’s African Cousin in the time trial of the Top Gear Botswana Special.
Land Rover Defender 110 4×4
The Land Rover Defender 110 4×4 has become the iconic car for 4×4 hire. Botswana’s wildlife rich and waterlogged Okavango Delta and Chobe region are no match for the classic African safari vehicle, which combines power and performance.
The 2.4 litre engine and 4-wheel drive would have saved Hammond from his early swim in the croc- infested waters of the Delta and kept Clarkson safer than his shield doors of soft drink cans and wood.
Whether you are looking for speed, comfort or like the intrepid Top Gear team could use a little more rugged performance there are a number of off-road rental options to suit your needs in 4×4 hire. Botswana’s magical natural splendor and unique wildlife encounters will prove far more enjoyable with the right equipment.