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Nigeria’s EV embrace raises concern on local assembly


While answers to questions of whether electric vehicles (EVs) are truly assembled in Nigeria in the face of idle local assembly plants in the country as government looks on, a tipping point is approaching where market dynamics will make inevitable.

Only last week, a new chapter was opened in annals of country’s auto assembly when Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Lagos state presided over the unveiling of Hyundai Kona perceived in some quarters as Nigeria’s first electric assembled inside the VoN assembly plant owned by the Stallion group.

Hyundai Kona EV and other brands it is hoped will bring a paradigm shift in the transportation sector by bringing in electric mobility that is a step towards the same goal while actual serious local assembly is expected to go full scale as soon as possible.

Unlike conventional vehicles that run on internal combustion engines, electric vehicles (EV) run, at least, partially on electricity or fuel cell.

In the age where concern for changing climate and its adverse effect on the environment is gaining more traction, cutting down on the use of fossil fuels, which internal combustion engine (ICE) cars run on, has seen major investments by car manufacturers. Such global interest in climate change and its effects on society more broadly, is at an all-time high.

Specifically, with the unpredictable coronavirus pandemic, more countries are increasingly acknowledging the shift that’s needed from a fossil fuel-driven economy to one that is sustainable, green and attempts to mitigate climate change.

For a developing country like Nigeria, not being discouraged by the infrastructural challenges, Stallion group and Hyundai automakers plan with the first ever is to embark on attitudinal change for a clean environment.

Now moving away from the controversy of a wholly assembled electric vehicle in Nigeria, Gaurav Vasisht, brand head at Hyundai Motors said that Kona is a stepping stone towards a greener Lagos.

Vasisht said making it affordable and accessible will see most people adopt today’s time new normal focus shift. The car can be charged at home like a mobile phone and drive around at no fuel cost and offers just that ease to the consumers.

Kona can go up to a range of 482 km with an acceleration of (0-100kms) in 9.7 seconds on a single battery cycle of a capacity of 64 KWH. The ease of charging is unmatched and can be plugged in at home or work for 9.35 hours for a full battery charge and the power consumption for full charging is 143 WH/KM (68.926 kwh for 482km). It is 100 percent electric with zero carbon emission.

It terms of running, a very important factor that gives electric vehicle an edge is the running cost, which is quite minimal. That will be very exciting with the arrival of Kona, where electricity consumers resident in accommodation categorized under R1 are charged only N45 per kilowatt.

That implies Hyundai Kona owners would incur only N3300 for a full charge that will do a running of 482 kms, if he or she plugs the car into public power supply. The charging is also as simple as getting it plugged at your home or office electrical socket.

Besides the Hyundai Kona’s electric power-packed performance for providing a thrilling driving experience it also manages to excel with its charging kit capacity of 2.3KW, with a voltage of 230V and frequency of 50Hz. The styling of the vehicle is conventional, the interior is luxurious, and the ride is nearly silent.

Looking to the future, Ben-Murray-Bruce, Nigerian senator, on April 25 last year who also drive a Kia Soul electric vehicle said that “in the next 5 years, more electric cars will be sold than fuel cars’’.



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