Honda’s “Challenging Spirit” definitely comes across in today’s Team Tuesday profile: two Honda R&D Americas associates who are fueling their love of adventure through the very vehicle they’re behind – the Honda Ridgeline. The Ridgeline Rebels, #209, Michelle Klein and Maria Guitar, worked with other associates at Honda R&D Americas, including their husbands, to specifically prep their Rebelle competition vehicle. Talk about teamwork and team building! In a short amount of time, they went through a great learning experience and built incredible camaraderie and friendship…and the rally hasn’t even begun yet.
Originally from Alsip, Illinois and currently living in Dublin, Ohio, Michelle Klein holds the title of Safety/Crash Test Engineer at Honda R&D Americas. Her adventures have taken her across the world, including one impactful trip visiting her relatives in Palau by herself at age 24. There, she learned about her strength of independence, passion for exploring the unknown, and desire to keep stepping out of her comfort zone. She also learned a ton about the culture and how Palauans on the island live life to the fullest, stating the focus is on caring for people, goodwill, and being together. And the best thing about her teammate Maria? “Her awesome optimism and lively spirit to conquer anything! She is up for the challenge and pushes through the tough moments with enthusiasm, a smile, and lots of laughs!”
Maria is from the Turkana desert in Kenya, and also now lives in Ostrander, Ohio. She is an Engine Test Engineer for Honda R&D Americas where she works with Michelle. Excited to be teaming up with her for the Rebelle? Absolutely!
“The Rebelle combines everything I love in life! Beautiful outdoor places, maps, off-road driving, adventure, good camaraderie, you can’t beat this combination of fun! And our company, Honda R&D Americas, has been very gracious to sponsor us and provide the opportunity to compete in the Rebelle this year. We chose the Honda Ridgeline because we are excited to experience the off-road abilities of this vehicle, and hope to gain more insight into how we can help with future developments of the Ridgeline.”
Honda R&D Americas Inc. Enters Vehicles in the 2018 Rebelle Rally – The Ultimate Proving Ground Competition
August 14, 2018 (Reno, NV) – Today the Rebelle Rally, the first women’s off-road navigation rally raid in the U.S., announces Honda will be fielding two teams of Honda R&D Americas Inc. employees to compete in the rally this October. A ten-day automotive endurance event with eight days of competition, the Rebelle Rally is designed for manufacturer vehicles, not race cars, making it the ultimate product proving ground.
Honda is entering two vehicles in the Crossover (CUV) class – the 2019 Honda Pilot and 2018 Ridgeline. The CUV-specific course includes over 2,500 kilometers of a wide variety of terrain – from dirt roads, two-tracks, rocky washes, and massive sand dunes. Both Honda vehicles will be mostly stock, with minimal modifications including skid plates, lights, and robust off-road tires.
“The vision of the Rebelle Rally was to create a serious testing platform for manufacturers, coupled with our tech backbone and challenging long distance course designed specifically for the vehicles we drive every day. We are excited to welcome Honda’s teams of engineers and are looking forward to seeing the results from their program,” noted rally founder Emily Miller.
About the Rebelle Rally
Entering its third year, to date the Rebelle Rally has hosted competitors from 136 cities, 35 states/provinces, and 7 countries. The world-class event is the longest competitive off-road rally in the lower 48, and takes place October 11th – October 20th with a start in Lake Tahoe and finish in San Diego. It is a unique challenge and scoring system where precise navigation, not speed, is the ultimate goal. Participants trade in cell phones and GPSs for old-school navigation in a competition for the elements of time, distance, headings, and hidden checkpoints. Armed with just maps, compasses, and roadbooks, up to 50 teams of two will be pushed to their limits as they make their way across Nevada and California’s desert terrain.
OFFICIAL HONDA RELEASE: hondanews.com
Hoehn Adventures, our Presenting sponsor, is stepping back up for 2017. In 2016, the automotive group based in Carlsbad, CA, fielded 6 teams decked out in the official State of California icons. Teams comprised of employees, customers, and Hoehn family took to the trails in 2 Land Rovers, a Honda Ridgeline, Mercedes G-Class, Porsche Cayenne, and the new Jaguar F-Pace. As we all look forward to 2017, let’s look back at their video recap.
Hoehn Motors and Hoehn Adventures Partners with the Inaugural Rebelle Rally –
the First Women’s Off Road Navigation Rally Raid in the U.S.
Six company teams will compete in a diverse range of vehicles
August 10, 2016 (Reno, NV) – The Rebelle Rally is pleased to announce that Hoehn Adventures is a Presenting Sponsor of the inaugural Rebelle Rally. In addition to a strong partnership, Hoehn Motors, based in Carlsbad, California, will field six full teams from five of its San Diego County automotive franchises – Land Rover, Porsche, Mercedes, Honda, and Jaguar. Teams are comprised of long-standing Hoehn employees and family members.
Since 1928, the Hoehn family has been in the automobile business and has steadily grown into one of the region’s most noted and respected dealerships and brands, with Hoehn Adventures being a subsidiary to the company’s expanding platform in national and international events.
For Jo Hannah Hoehn, General Manager of Hoehn Jaguar Land Rover and fourth generation automobile dealer, supporting the everyday woman from San Diego in stock Hoehn vehicles means more than a great partnership. For her, it’s personal.
“We are thrilled to be involved with the inaugural Rebelle Rally, and are so proud of our six Hoehn employee competitors. Their camaraderie, enthusiasm, and commitment to this adventure has been truly inspiring, and I can’t wait to join them on the starting line in October,” said Jo Hannah. “I’m also really excited to be doing something like this in our own back yard. It’s so easy to forget how stunning and diverse the Western landscape is, and this is going to be an amazing way to see it.”
The six teams from Hoehn Motors competing:
- Jo Hannah Hoehn and Susie Saxten competing in a Land Rover LR4
- Karen Hoehn and Dana Saxten competing in a Land Rover LR4
- Josan Badillo and Jaimy Grigsby competing in a Jaguar F-PACE
- Trish Lewis and Sally Gallice competing in a Mercedes G550
- Lisa Wolford and Sandy Conner competing in a Porsche Cayenne
- Meli Barrett and Sabrina Howells competing in a Honda Ridgeline
The Honda, Porsche, and Jaguar teams will compete in the Crossover Class – vehicles with unibody construction and no low range transfer case. The Mercedes G-Class and LR4s will compete in the 4×4 Class. “The Rebelle is not a race for speed or for tube chassis race vehicles, but a platform for OEM manufacturer vehicles to shine. We are excited to partner with such a committed company as Hoehn Motors to showcase the capabilities of these SUVs and CUVs,” noted rally director Emily Miller.
About the Rebelle Rally:
The Rebelle Rally is the first women’s off-road navigation rally raid in the United States. Teams of two will traverse over 2,000 kilometers in seven competition days across the desert West. A true test of precise navigation, it is not a race for speed, but a unique and demanding event based on the elements of headings, hidden checkpoints, time and distance using maps, compass and road book.
About Hoehn Motors:
The Hoehn family has been in the car business since Hoehn Chevrolet was founded in 1928 by Theodore W. Hoehn. In 1938 the company, headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee was transferred to Theodore W. “Bill” Hoehn, Junior. After moving to La Jolla, California for what turned out to be a short-lived retirement, Bill founded Hoehn Motors in Carlsbad in 1975. Bill’s two sons Bill and Bob now own the business. Today, there is a fourth generation of family working in the business.