I remember spotting one of an early adopter’s EV at Sarit Centre in Westlands, Nairobi, in 2016. It was a grey Nissan Leaf. There were not that many EVs in Kenya at the time. Two years later in 2018, I was now able to hail an electric car via a ride-hailing service that had just set up operations in Nairobi. There were not a lot of EVs on the platform at the time, so to ensure that I would ride in an electric car, I would book the cars well in advance of any trips.
A lot has happened in the Kenyan EV space since that time and our readers will have seen a lot of this right here on CleanTechnica. One thing I am really excited about is seeing all the progress that has been made so far by all the companies and stakeholders involved in Kenya’s electric mobility sector. One of the highlights of the recent Africa Climate Summit was the all-electric vehicle Parade dubbed Rall E. That is because the parade really got to showcase just how exciting the electric vehicle sector is now in Kenya and how much more can be done with the right support and enabling environment.
The parade featured more than 500 all-electric vehicles. This is probably the largest all-electric vehicle parade ever held on the African continent. The parade included battery-electric cars such as Nissan Leafs (first and second generation), Autopax Air EV Yetu, which is known as the Wuling Air or the MG Comet in other parts of the world, Hyundai Kona, Hyundai Ioniq 5, Nissan ENV200 vans, JAC 4-Tonne electric truck as well as the pickup truck, BYD and HTC electric buses courtesy of BasiGo, high capacity electric bus from ROAM, a super cool 1974 VW Kombi that has been converted to electric and is powered by Nissan Leaf battery packs, and a VW eGolf, as well as several other battery-electric cars.
There were also hundreds of electric motorcycles from several companies including Ampersand, ROAM, Kiri EVs, Ecobodaa, ARC Ride, SPARK, MAZI Mobility, FIKA Mobility, and several others. There were also electric three-wheelers from the likes of BILITI ELECTRIC as well as hundreds of electric bicycles and scooters from eBee, eWaka, and several other firms. I was excited to take part in the parade as well. I drove a BYD T3 electric van courtesy of Equator Mobility. Being part of such a huge all-electric vehicle parade right here on the African continent was a really special moment for me as it really gave me an opportunity to see just how much progress has been made in this part of the world.
A lot of these vehicles such as the electric scooters, motorcycles, and bicycles are locally designed and assembled in Kenya as well, which is great for the local ecosystem. So much work has been done in Kenya over the past 7 years or so by all the companies involved in the EV sector. Most of them are now members of the Electric Mobility Association of Kenya, EMAK, and EMAK must be commended for all the work it is doing.
Special thanks to Hans, Max, and the team at Tesnetwork for months of hard work on this, and to EMAK and all other partners and stakeholders involved in this parade and Rall E.
Images courtesy of EMAK
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