In addition to being the fastest man in the world, as of today Eliud Kipchoge can also boast another record: being the first marathon runner to have a car dedicated to him that will be produced in a limited series.
Japan’s Isuzu has unveiled the design of its all-new D-Max pickup truck, named “Eliud Kipchoge 1:59” for the occasion. Or, more affectionately, “159.”
Why a pickup, why Isuzu, why the number 159.
The type of car is popular in Kenya, where it is appreciated for its versatility and because it can be both a means of transporting people and things. The company that makes it is, as mentioned, Isuzu of Japan, and the partnership with the Kenyan champion is not sudden: in fact, Kipchoge has been sponsored by them for a long time. As he himself says, “They are like a third leg to me, they believed in me before everyone else.”
Okay, and why is it called 159? It’s quickly said: 1 hour 59 minutes is the time recorded by Kipchoge in October 2019 in Vienna, when for the first time in history a human (i.e., him) run under two hours over the marathon distance.
These three figures never cease to repeat themselves: 159 the name of the car, 1:59 the world record time (and especially the memory of the first time a man ran 42 kilometers in less than two hours), and 159 finally also the total number of D-Maxes that will be produced with its signature.
He’s getting, of course, the most symbolic one: the number 001.