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by Tim Beissmann

Have you ever wondered how the Volkswagen Passat Wagon is made? We may have stumbled across the answer, and it begins something like this: When an elephant and a car love each other very much…

A 66-year-old Irish man and his friend got more than they bargained for while driving through a wildlife safari park in South Africa.

John Somer and Carina Lowers were visiting the Pilansberg Game Reserve when a large five-tonne male elephant named Amarula approached their silver Volkswagen Passat and became rather friendly with it.

Mr Somer explained the situation to The Telegraph newspaper in the UK:

“It was a tricky situation – I thought if I tried to drive past it might charge us, so I decided to keep the car still,” he said.

“He was agitated … he started to rub himself against the car, breaking the wing mirrors and cracking the windows.

“When he began to tip the car over I started to get worried – I thought my time was up.

“It was strange to think I would be crushed by an elephant.”

Mr Somer explained Ms Lowers’ instinct was to get out of the car, but he said he knew she would be trampled if she did.

Upside-down in the car, the two were forced to wait until the elephant moved on before medical staff could help.

“A guide came to help us and called the park rangers and medical assistance,” Mr Somer said. “I am very grateful to them.”

Fortunately, the two escaped the ordeal largely uninjured, but with a jumbo-sized story to tell.

Perhaps Volkswagen could bring out a Passat Wagon Amarula special edition, in honour of the elephant and its love of the VW badge.




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