It has always been said that necessity is the mother of inventions. And if that necessity is something like escaping death, one can simply expect a much smarter outcome. This is the story of Emile Leray who re-engineered his car into something spectacular for his survival.
Emile Leray frequently travelled through Africa. In March 1993 Emile set off to follow a route from Tan-Tan to Zagora in Morocco. He left Tan-Tan with the required reserves of fuel and provisions (including a small camera) as well as tools to keep his old Citroën 2CV on the road.
After driving for a few hours he encountered a bad patch of road. It was rocky and full of potholes. After striking a rock the 2CV started to show bad symptoms. One of the front suspensions was broken and the control arm was folded. The car was no good for his journey. The only option left for him to walk back to Tan-Tan.
Walking for a few days without food and water was a bad idea. He had to carry water and food. So he decided to re-engineer the car into a two-wheeler. Emile Leray was a former electrician and had a good idea about how stuff works. It seems unthinkable to assemble this machine in the desert. He had no drills, no power tools or welding equipment. But somehow he managed to assemble it by just by screwing.
It should be noted that the exhaust is free, so the nose and the ears are affected greatly. The bike does not have a brake, nor does it have footrests. On the first test, the bike fell over, causing a great scare to Emile, who almost found himself crushed under his 200-kilo machine.
After a bumpy ride and a few stops for mechanical improvements, he encamped and slept at the edge of a track. In the night, three soldiers found Emile. As he was on a forbidden zone, the soldier demands to see the carcass of the 2CV to have proof of this incredible story. The next day, the carcass was found and the soldiers relaxed.
There was a great deal of uncertainty to carry out this project and it wasn't so easy to realize as one might think. The possibility of failure remained present throughout the adventure. But Emile escaped the desert on his motorbike. When he was pushed to the wall, his creativity came to rescue him.