South Africa is racing into the future of sustainable mobility and electric vehicles. The country’s first electric vehicle road trip (EVRT) powered by ACDC Dynamics and driven by Generation.e in partnership with the Department of Transport and the Gauteng government, will take place on 2 – 10 October 2019, in celebration of Transport Month.
Ben Pullen, CEO of Generation.e says that the theme of October Transport Month 2019 is to make people aware of the role transport plays in growing and developing South Africa’s economy, as well as the importance of transport in citizen’s everyday lives.
“We believe it is crucial that electric vehicles and smarter mobility are at the forefront when it comes to driving awareness in the transport sector this month. Electric cars offer many benefits including minimising carbon emissions and air pollution for South Africans, and they can drive down costs of mobility for the end user but also for the country through a reduction in fuel imports.”
It is for this reason that three of South Africa’s top vehicle brands have entered the EVRT Africa powered by ACDC Dynamics, he says, pointing out electric models BMW i3, Jaguar I-Pace and Nissan LEAF.
Tim Abbott, Chief Executive Officer, BMW Group South Africa & Sub-Saharan Africa, says that electric mobility is a main strategic focus of the BMW Group. “The company will now introduce the 25 electrified models previously announced for 2025, two years earlier in 2023. Half of those models will be fully electric.
“We expect to experience a steep growth curve up to 2025, with sales of our electrified vehicles set to increase by an average of 30% every year,” he says.
“Essentially, we will offer electrified vehicles in all segments,” Abbott continues. “As BMW, we believe that sustainable mobility thrives wherever there is an effective combination of three factors: customer demand, legislation and innovative partnerships such as the EVRT Africa. It is vital that the public and private sector continue to cooperate to introduce smarter mobility solutions in South Africa.”
“Nissan’s contribution to electrification started with the launch of the first ever electric vehicle (Nissan LEAF) in South Africa in 2013. In recent years we have been carrying out several initiatives together with government, key stakeholders and institutions to create strategic alliances to support the creation of a sustainable EV ecosystem in South Africa,” says Kabelo Rabotho, Director of Marketing at Nissan South Africa. “Nissan’s participation in the EVRT and Smarter Mobility Africa Summit is important in educating consumers on the benefits of electric vehicles and accelerating transformation to smarter mobility.”
Brian Hastie, Network Development Director at Jaguar Land Rover for South Africa and sub-Saharan Africa said: “South Africa is well positioned for mass electric vehicle adoption and this road trip will highlight the recent strides made by various stakeholders, including Jaguar South Africa, in infrastructure development and product availability.
“Jaguar South Africa introduced its all-electric I-PACE early this year and this platform is a great way to show a broader audience how Jaguar I-PACE customers are already successfully living with electric vehicles and existing infrastructure in urban environments and on long distance journeys. In 2017 Jaguar Land Rover CEO Prof Sir Ralf Speth announced that all new model lines would be electrified by 2020. In South Africa we are on track to deliver the promise with a portfolio of electrified products including fully electric, plug-in hybrid and mild hybrid vehicles.”
Pullen says that because top car brands are part of efforts to drive smarter mobility in the country, the public and other stakeholders are getting the opportunity to see that South Africa is ready for the electric revolution.
“We are excited that these top car brands are at the forefront of making the future of smarter mobility a reality in South Africa, and are aiming to prove that of course South Africa is in fact ready by taking part in the first EVRT Africa powered by ACDC Dynamics,” says Pullen.