A Stranded Engineer Turned a Car Into a Motorbike to Escape the Desert

And he still has the motorcycle.
Loukia Papadopoulos

It's been said that when in dangerous situations, humans can perform amazing feats. This is the story of one such feat.

Twenty years ago, a French man named Emile Leray, then a 43-year-old former electrician, found himself stuck in a Moroccan desert near a city called Tan-Tan after hitting his Citroen 2CV on a big rock, destroying the front axle and the chassis. The closest village was not within walking distance and Leray found himself in a precautions situation. How was he going to get back to humanity?

That's when the engineer came up with an ingenious solution: he was going to transform his wrecked car into a motorbike.

He started by removing the body of the car in order to use it as a shelter. He then took three of the wheels of the vehicle and strategically placed them on his new invention. He also shortened the frame and fixed the axles.

Next, he converted the car’s rear bumper into a rudimentary seat and put the engine in front of it. Now all that was left to do was to place the suspension on the rear wheel and rig the ignition to the handlebar so that the new invention functioned like a real motorbike.

It took Leray 12 days and 11 nights to complete his assignment but it proved successful as the engineer was able to drive all the way back to France with it.

Funnily enough, on the way to Tan-Tan, Leray was stopped by the police and given a 4,550 dirham (450 euro) fine because his creation didn’t conform to the specifications of the Citroën 2CV. 

According to The Drive, Leray still possesses his life-saving motorcycle along with some other creations he has made over the years including a boat, a rugby ball, and a table saw. All he is missing, says the intrepid engineer, is an airplane.

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