In 2004 Rainer Zietlow founded his agency, CHALLENGE4 GmbH. It is a specialist in planning and executing worldwide automotive projects. Rainer Zietlow's automotive success includes five Guinness World Records™ and serveral long distance world records.
In 2005 he established a new altitude record for series production vehicles with a Volkswagen Touareg V6 in Chile together with Ronald Bormann and a six-member team. He then completed the first natural gas-powered round-the-world trip in a Volkswagen Caddy EcoFuel in 2006/2007 with a team of four. In 2013, he and his team of eight set the record in Russia for the longest drive within a single country with several Volkswagen Amaroks. In between these records, Rainer Zietlow set two long-distance world records by driving the famous Panamericana road from Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, to Alaska in 2011 and the shortest time from Melbourne, Australia, to St. Petersburg, Russia, a year later.
In 2014, Rainer Zietlow and his team completed the 18,000 kilometers route between Nordkapp, Norway, and Cape Agulhas, South Africa. Due to an accident that forced the team to spend 13 days in Ethiopia, it took them 21 days to complete the journey. While this was a new record for the distance, Rainer Zietlow's goal was to complete the tour in just ten days. A year later he tried again, starting in South Africa and reaching Nordkapp 9 days and 4 hours later. In 2016, Rainer Zietlow and his two team colleagues set a new record from east to west across the Eurasian continent – from Magadan, Russia, to Lisbon, Portugal.
In 2017, Rainer Zietlow and his team even went on two record-breaking journeys. In 3 days 3 hours they drove from Dakar to Moscow. Four months later, they drove from Shanghai to Venice in 5 days 18 hours, crossing 11 countries including China, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan and Iran. In 2018, a double tour followed: In 21 days, a Touareg prototype went from the VW plant in Bratislava, Slovakia, to the auto show in Beijing. The tour then returned to Wolfsburg in 24 days with two VW Touareg Type CRs. In 2019, another record followed on the American continent. On the Panamericana Highway, the journey went from Alaska to Argentina in 10 days and 19 hours.
In 2017, Rainer Zietlow and his team even made two record drives. They drove from Dakar to Moscow in 3 days and 3 hours. Four months later, they drove from Shanghai to Venice in 5 days 18 hours, crossing 11 countries including China, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan and Iran. In 2018, a double tour followed: in 21 days, a Touareg prototype drove from the VW plant in Bratislava, Slovakia, to the auto show in Beijing, China. The tour then returned to Wolfsburg, Germany, in 24 days with two VW Touareg Type CR. In 2019, another record followed on the American continent. On the Panamericana, the Pan-American Highway, the journey went from Alaska to Argentina in 10 days and 19 hours.
The dawning age of electric driving led to two marathon drives in short succession. In 2020, Rainer Zietlow completed the longest journey to date within a country in an all-electric vehicle: in a Volkswagen ID.3, Rainer Zietlow visited all of the approximately 830 VW dealers and nearly 650 fast-charging stations in Germany within 65 days. One year later, in 2021, he undertook a similar tour in the United States, driving 35,770 miles within 97 days, doubling the record of 2020 record and setting a new Guinness World Record.
From distance back to height: In 2022, Rainer Zietlow set his second Guinness Altitude World Record in Chile. In an all-electric VW ID.4 GTX, he climbed the dormant Uturuncu volcano to a height of 5,816 meters above sea level.
Height, width, extremes – there is still a lot that professional driver Rainer Zietlow aims to achieve.