Image courtesy of Equator Mobility

Trademark Hotel Launches Electric Car Hotel Transfer Service in Nairobi

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The Trademark Hotel has become the first hotel in Kenya to adopt electric vehicles for its passenger shuttle service. Trademark is a 4-star hotel situated in Nairobi’s Gigiri area. Gigiri is also where the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is based. The UNEP is responsible for coordinating responses to environmental issues within the United Nations system. The affluent area of Gigiri is frequented by a climate-conscious clientele.

Trademark Hotel is starting its journey to electrifying its fleet with four 40 kWh Nissan Leafs. EV-database states that the real world range of the 40 kWh leaf is around 235 km and about 355 km in mild weather in city driving depending on one’s driving style and traffic conditions. I spoke to the drivers of the four Leafs at Trademark hotel and they were pretty excited about switching to electric cars. Previously they were driving some internal combustion engine vehicles and they say they have had a seamless transition.

The drivers say that they are getting a range of about 250 km, which is perfect for their usual trips to the airport and back to the hotel in Nairobi. One driver said that they usually do about 4 trips per driver to the airport on a normal day, which the Leafs have been able to do quite comfortably since their introduction. The distance from the Trademark Hotel to the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport is about 25 km each way via the new Nairobi Expressway. The hotel has installed charging stations in the basement parking area where the Leafs are charged as needed. When I asked them if they would go back to petrol cars, the answer was an emphatic No! They are really excited about it and are looking forward to seeing more EVs on the streets of Nairobi.

This is a good example of one of the best uses cases for electric vehicles. Fleet operators such as shuttle service providers for airport transfers and other players who drive a lot of kilometers per day stand to benefit the most from lower operations and maintenance costs associated with electric vehicles, thereby enjoying a lower total cost of ownership. They also benefit from access to charging infrastructure at their depots/facilities, reducing concerns around the limited public charging infrastructure in the country at the moment.

Kenya is also 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 contributers 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 country’s 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.

Trademark Hotel launched the electric vehicle project as part of a wider sustainability initiative that also includes the Village Market Mall. For the electric vehicle project, Trademark has partnered with Humming Bird Transport and Equator Mobility

Image courtesy of Equator Mobility


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Remeredzai Joseph Kuhudzai

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.

Remeredzai Joseph Kuhudzai has 789 posts and counting. See all posts by Remeredzai Joseph Kuhudzai