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Electric Vehicle Leasing Firm Equator Mobility Ramping Up In Kenya

Equator Mobility, previously known as META Electric, is ramping up its operations in Kenya, with the objective of catalyzing the transition to electric mobility. It launched its operations last year, seed-funded by Maris Ltd, an Africa-focused investment company, by introducing a B2B leasing program with the option of direct sales for commercial electric vehicles. Such leases range from 6 months upwards.

The aim has always been to bridge the gap for corporates to transition to electric mobility. Most of the brand new electric vehicles available around the world still have higher outright purchase prices than equivalent internal combustion engine vehicles. This tends to intimidate potential buyers of electric vehicles. Leasing models lower this important barrier.

Equator Mobility’s initial focus was on fleet operators in the e-commerce, logistics, and security industries, starting with BYD’s electric T3 van. In these sectors, reducing downtime and maintenance costs can unlock significant efficiencies, while also naturally reducing both carbon and pollutant emissions within Kenya’s transport sector.

Equator Mobility is now expanding its operations to include other vehicle segments, including fleet operators that offer passenger shuttle services within the hospitality industry, as well as staff shuttle services for corporates. Premium hotels are now actively looking to offer their clients cleaner transport options as part of their ESG programs.

As such, the organization has recently partnered with Humming Bird Transport, one of the largest fleet operators in Kenya, and added a number of 40 kWh Nissan Leaf vehicles to its growing fleet. The 40 kWh Nissan Leaf is one of the few EVs which can provide sufficient range, spec requirements and pricing suitable for corporates in Kenya. Equator Mobility is brand agnostic and have lined up various EV models from several OEMs across multiple vehicle segments to boost its fleet as demand for EVs continues to grow. Humming Bird Transport is on track to deploy at least 100 EVs within the next 24 months.

Kenya is an ideal country for the adoption of EVs, not just because of reduced tailpipe emissions, but also due to the broader energy mix in the country’s electricity sector. The transport sector is one of the major contributors of CO2 emissions, and therefore reducing tailpipe emissions from vehicles by increasing the penetration of electric mobility will be one of the key pathways towards cleaning the air in the country. For Kenya, the move to electric will mean that the vehicle fleet will be powered by a very clean electric grid, as about 90% of the electricity generated in Kenya comes from renewable energy sources such as geothermal, wind, hydro, and solar.

Images courtesy of Equator Mobility

 
 
 
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Remeredzai Joseph Kuhudzai has been fascinated with batteries since he was in primary school. As part of his High School Physics class he had to choose an elective course. He picked the renewable energy course and he has been hooked ever since. At university he continued to explore materials with applications in the energy space and ending up doing a PhD involving the study of radiation damage in High Temperature Gas Cooled Nuclear Reactors. He has since transitioned to work in the Solar and Storage industry and his love for batteries has driven him to obsess about electric vehicles.

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