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By Jan Wagner - syndicated weekly columnist/photojournalist
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It's Official: The ZAP Across America Rally is ON!

 

As it is late and I have a lot of driving ahead of me, starting today, I'll keep this short and sweet (I also don't know how long the battery will last on my new laptop computer).

I'll begin with the official Press Release:

Smart Cars to ZAP Across America

Rally Around Smarter Cars

On April 4 an eclectic group of men and women ages 22 to 66 will journey across the United States of America with the aim of reaching the New York International Auto Show, Celebrating Earth Day, and returning home, all to raise awareness about advanced technology vehicles.

The Smart Car Americanized for ZAP -- the most fuel-efficient all-gas turbo in the country -- has received the regulatory green light through its registered importer to allow for the distribution of the Smart ForTwo Coupe and Cabriolet in the USA. We are now commencing auto sales through authorized and licensed ZAP dealers throughout the country while seeking a select group of dealers to expand its business plan marketing micro-cars.

ZAP with us at:
http://www.zapworld.com/blog

WHAT:
Cross-country rally of the Smart Car Americanized for ZAP,
the most efficient all-gas turbo in the country

WHEN:
Rally begins April 4 in Santa Rosa, California

New York International Auto Show
April 14-23

New York Media Availability
11 AM, Tuesday, April 18th

Return Leg to California begins
April 25

WHY:
Fuel-efficient micro-cars, common around the world,
are now available in the USA via ZAP
at a time of record gas prices

WHERE:
From ZAP Headquarters in Santa Rosa, California to
The New York International Auto Show at
the Jacob Javits Convention Center
in New York City
http://www.autoshowny.com


Projected Schedule
Across the Southern United States
Preliminary Route:
April 4, 2006
- Leave Santa Rosa, California at 9 AM
- Travel Through San Francisco, California
- Stop in Fresno, California
- Following day, destination Phoenix

Schedule and checkpoints subject to change
See ZAPblog for updated schedule and route at
http://www.zapworld.com/blog

*** New York Media Availability ***
11 AM, Tuesday, April 18th at
the New York International Auto Show
the Jacob Javits Center
Inner Roadway
http://www.autoshowny.com

WHO:
Eclectic group of men and women, ages 22 to 66

VISUALS:
Media demonstrations and test-drives of ZAP micro-cars available by appointment.

INFO:
Rally leader & journalist:
Jan Wagner
AutoMatters@gmail.com
filing progress reports for automotive column
"AutoMatters" online at
http://www.AutoMatters.net

ZAP HQ Rally Contact
Alex Campbell
acampbell@zapworld.com

New York Contact:
Jennifer Zimmons
jzimmons@zapworld.com

About ZAP

ZAP has been a leader in advanced transportation technologies since 1994, delivering over 90,000 vehicles to consumers in more than 75 countries. ZAP is at the forefront of fuel-efficient transportation with new technologies including energy efficient gas systems, hydrogen, electric, fuel cell, alcohol, hybrid, trybrid and other innovative power systems. The Smart Car Americanized by ZAP currently complies with regulatory requirements in all states except California and four other states. ZAP is not affiliated with, or authorized by, smart gmbh, the manufacturer of Smart automobiles, or the smartUSA division of Mercedes-Benz LLC, the exclusive authorized U.S. importer and distributor of those vehicles. For more information, visit http://www.zapworld.com.

Cautionary Statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements. Investors are cautioned that such forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, continued acceptance of the Company's products, increased levels of competition for the Company, new products and technological changes, the Company's dependence on third-party suppliers, intellectual property rights, and other risks detailed from time to time in the Company's periodic reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

# # #




 
 
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This is incredibly exciting. As you can see from this Press Release, not only will I be driving one of the SMART cars across America, but I have also been designated Rally Leader & Journalist. I'll try to live up to that honor.


Our friendly Airport Express bus driver from the Oakland Airport to Santa Rosa, CA

Yesterday I flew into the Oakland airport from San Diego. Then I was treated to a very scenic bus coach ride from the airport to Santa Rosa.


From the bus on the way to Santa Rosa, CA

On the way I saw some of the most beautiful countryside that I have ever seen, with sweeping vistas of light green contrasted with rich-looking dark green trees.

You may be wondering how I was selected for this adventure. I was covering the most recent LA Auto Show for AutoMatters. It was the second day of the show and I was feeling a bit disappointed with the show's official Press Conferences, as compared to years past. That prompted me to head on over to the commercial vendor exhibit hall, where I came across the ZAP exhibit. I got into a long and enjoyable conversation with the ZAP representative, learned a little about their products and decided to feature them in a column (you can find out more too by visiting www.zapworld.com). Some time after that I got "the call" from ZAP (sorry, but I couldn't resist using the NASCAR terminology). They were calling to ask me if I was interested in going on the Rally. You betcha! I was so interested that I gave up using my Press Credential for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, missed covering the GoodGuys show in Del Mar and even missed one of my autocrosses (thus putting me out of contention for the 100% participation award).

Well, that's about it for this report. Now I'll see if I can upload this to my Web site using my new, on-the-road AOL dial-up Internet connection. If you're reading this, then you know I succeeded. For more information on the rally, visit the ZAP blog at www.zapworld.com/blog.

As always, please share your stories and send your comments to AutoMatters@gmail.com. Enjoy the archives and more at www.AutoMatters.net. Drive safely and do join me again next time.

 

Copyright 2006 Jan R. Wagner #184 AutoMatters

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