Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

Images courtesy of Solutions Africa

Clean Transport

Solutions Africa Introduces Electric Tuk-Tuks In Kenya

The electric 2-wheeler market in Kenya has been getting a lot of attention. There are over 15 startups in the sector that are at different stages in their development. After several years of pilot programs, a lot of them are now ramping up their operations. 285,203 ICE motorcycles were registered in Kenya in 2021, so you can understand the focus on this segment given the large addressable market for electrification.

Another key area in Kenya’s transport sector for the movement of people and goods is the 3-wheeler market. Tuk-tuks are a key segment, especially in the coastal region of Kenya in places such as Diani, Mombasa, Kilifi, Watamu, and Malindi. One can’t miss the noise from the thousands of tuk-tuks driving around these places.

Mombasa-based Solutions Africa is working to catalyze the transition of the tuk-tuk market in Kenya to electric. Launched in December 2021, Solutions Africa LTD plans to fill the gap in the market and introduce electric 3-wheelers in the region. Solutions Africa imports completely knocked-down kits and then works with Associated Vehicle Assemblers (AVA) to assemble the vehicles in Mombasa. Kenya incentivizes the local assembly of vehicles imported as fully knocked-down kits by exempting them from import duties and taxes. Only VAT is applicable. Solutions Africa has taken advantage of this to ensure that its electric tuk-tuks will be competitive with the traditional ICE tuk-tuks in terms of up-front purchase price.

Fully built imports would cost a lot more on the market and would not be as competitive with their ICE equivalents. To further ensure that its electric tuk-tuks are competitive price-wise, the first generation comes with lead acid batteries. This was a strategic move to enter the market at close to parity with ICE equivalents, as lithium-ion versions would cost close to $2,000 to $3,000 dollars more. And in an industry with tight margins, operators would not be too keen to pay $2,000 more upfront. As the price of lithium-ion batteries improves, Solutions Africa is working to introduce versions with lithium-ion batteries. For now, the company assures customers that its lead acid batteries will last at least 3 years and it is also working with partners to have a battery upgrade program to lithium-ion once the current lead acid versions reach their end of life.

Currently, Solutions Africa owns, operates, and manages the fleet of electric tuk-tuks that it has introduced in Mombasa. Due to the weight and bulkiness of the lead acid batteries, Solutions Africa currently charges the tuk-tuks directly, but is working on a battery swap model as well for when they introduce the lighter and easier to swap lithium-ion options. It takes between 6 to 8 hours to fully charge the lead acid batteries in the tuk-tuks.

Solutions Africa is also working with the key players in Kenya’s 2- and 3-wheeler financing sector to allow operators in the sector to get flexible payment terms and lower the barriers to adoption. I am looking forward to seeing these electric tuk-tuks in action soon.


Images courtesy of Solutions Africa

I don't like paywalls. You don't like paywalls. Who likes paywalls? Here at CleanTechnica, we implemented a limited paywall for a while, but it always felt wrong — and it was always tough to decide what we should put behind there. In theory, your most exclusive and best content goes behind a paywall. But then fewer people read it! We just don't like paywalls, and so we've decided to ditch ours. Unfortunately, the media business is still a tough, cut-throat business with tiny margins. It's a never-ending Olympic challenge to stay above water or even perhaps — gasp — grow. So ...
If you like what we do and want to support us, please chip in a bit monthly via PayPal or Patreon to help our team do what we do! Thank you!
Sign up for daily news updates from CleanTechnica on email. Or follow us on Google News!

Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.

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.


You May Also Like


Hydrogène de France (HDF Energy) has announced that it has reached a further milestone in the development of Zimbabwe’s first high-powered green hydrogen power...

Clean Power

Equator Energy is a fully integrated solar power provider headquarted in Nairobi, Kenya. Equator Energy also has a presence in Uganda, as well as...

Clean Power

Teraco is Africa’s leading carrier-neutral colocation provider. Teraco says it is the first provider of highly resilient, vendor-neutral data environments in sub-Saharan Africa. Teraco...


Solar MD makes its own battery packs in Cape Town, South Africa, by integrating cells from CATL, the world’s largest battery company, and Solar...

Copyright © 2023 CleanTechnica. The content produced by this site is for entertainment purposes only. Opinions and comments published on this site may not be sanctioned by and do not necessarily represent the views of CleanTechnica, its owners, sponsors, affiliates, or subsidiaries.