Africahasbeen a consumer and never a producer over the years, when it comes to cars. The level of consumption is almost alarming and no one ever thinks of production. Last year, Africa was estimated to have bought about 2 million new cars. Africans have lost confidence in their local engineers that it is quite unbelievable that they could manufacture any meaningful technological outfit. If you think that you are a big dreamer and ever tries to convince your friends that such thing is possible, there is every likelihood that you will be laughed to scorn, and they will obviously give you a thousand and one reasons why it is far from being possible. As change is inevitable, some African entrepreneurs have refused to be left out in the very lucrative automobile industry, and lo and behold, their dreams came true! Here is the news that Africa-made cars are now on sale in our local car markets. Majority of Africans never heard of these projects, if not now that they are accomplished.
Here are 6 cars produced in Africa by Africans for Africa.
1. The Kantanka (Made in Ghana)
At the moment, some Africans are already owners of this proudly made in Ghana car. They are on sale in variety of colours and models. We have the Kantanka SUV, the Kantanka pickup, etc. In case you want to see for yourself, the Katanka Automobile Company’s manufacturing plant is located in Gomoa Mpota in the central region of Ghana.
The brain behind this invention is no other person but the Ghanaian Apostle Kwadwo Safo, the owner of the Kantanka Group of Companies and the Apostle Safo School of Arts and Sciences. He imagined,designed and created this car right in Ghana. Looking at it, you need not be told that it is of standard. It is in fact the most promising of all the Africa-made cars presented in this article.
The Kantanka vehicles supposedly designed for Ghana’s local conditions are, in fact, indistinguishable from ones that have been on sale in China for years. Kantanka’s CEO has admitted to working with a secret Chinese partner, and one Chinese company has already claimed responsibility for Kantanka’s entire factory operation.
2. Innoson (Made in Nigeria)
Chief Dr. Innocent Ifediaso Chukwuma is the founder and developer of The Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company, Nigeria. They are the first technology company to manufacture cars in Nigeria.
They have been producing luxury, mini buses and trucks.It is really a thing of delight that the Innoson model of cars are already on sale and in use. Unlike the Kantanka which were produced in limited numbers, Innoson has not less than 500 Nigeria-made cars released for sale at the cost of between N 1.5- N3.5 million. Innoson has really made Nigerians, and Africans at large to believe that it is possible.
Millions of Nigerians cannot allow buying a new car because it is too expensive. However, the biggest Nigerian car manufacturer says everyone will be able to purchase a new vehicle for N1.5m (4,500 $) .
Advantages of Innoson cars:
Affordable price Built for Nigerian roads
Modern and comfortable car
All vehicles correspond urgent needs of an average car user in Nigeria
Three years gear, engine, and axle’s warranty
3. The Kiira EV Smack (Made in Uganda)
This is an electric hybrid car produced in Uganda by Kiira Motors Corporation (KMC). It is an invention initiated by students. Now, they have gained the Ugandan government support.
The Kiira EV Smack is an advanced stage of the formerly produced Kiira EV Prototype. It is made in a way that is very cost-effective in that it can be powered to use either electricity or diesel. It may be sounding like a big joke, but soon, Africa will become one of the world’s car producers and distributors!
4. Mobius Motors (Mobius II – Made in Kenya)
Mobius Motos released the first batch of their low-cost vehicles towards the end of last year. The multi-purpose vehicle which costs about $10,000 was manufactured for Africa’s mass market. Mobius motors are designing around Africa’s common road terrain and transport usage. If you are thinking of getting one of these for yourself, you should know that the eight-seater vehicle has a large cargo space with a loading capacity of up to 625 kg and is capable of reaching a top speed of 160 km/hr on a manually transmitted gear box.
A Kenyan company that took up the audacious task of producing low-cost vehicles for Africa’s off-road and rough terrain plans to increase production of a newer, more advanced model next year after an optimistic reception of its pioneer model.
Since the inaugural model Mobius II rolled off the assembly line in late 2014, 50 units were sold by the end of 2015 with Mobius Motors now planning to significantly ramp up production of a more advanced model next year. It anticipates the new Mobius II, which will be a more enhanced version of its pioneer model, will have advanced features such as a better interior and exterior appearance, power steering, sealed side windows and a much higher ground clearance. The expectation is that the enhanced model will gain an even better reception in the East African market.
Jackson, the company’s CEO announced in October Mobius had started accepting pre-orders for the new Mobius II. The simplistic design and absence of key features such as power steering, air conditioning and glass windows in the original Mobius was compensated by the relatively low price of 950,000 Kenya shillings (approximately $9,500).
5. The Turtle (Made in Ghana)
The Turtle is not as polished as the first two but it’s quite an intriguing concept vehicle that found life in the middle of a project and a local community. The car is actually designed and constructed to meet local needs. It combines the looks of a jeep and that of a truck.
No argument, it was 1000% made in Ghana by Local craftsmen.
6. The Wind and Solar Powered Car (Made In Nigeria)
We feel it’s good to include this invention in our list as it may turn out with time to become something we never dreamed of. This car was produced by an Obafemi Awolowo final year student, Segun Oyeyiola as his final year project. He formed the car from a Volkswagen Beetle and other materials. He constructed the car in such a way that in the day, it will use solar energy, and in the night it will use wind turbine.
We just hope that these creative and inventive stars will get all the support they need from all the required areas to be able to get to the zenith of their dreams.
In less than a year, Segun Oyeyiola developed a solar and wind-powered zero emissions electric car using scrap materials.
Retrofitting is a technical term which means modifying the technology of an object to improve its performances. Segun Oyeyiola, a Nigerian student of Engineering, just retrofitted an old Volkswagen Beetle and turned it into a solar and wind-powered car.
Within a year the final year student managed to convert the Beetle into a zero emissions off-road car using scrap materials offered by his friends or relatives, spending slightly less than 5,000 euros. He installed a photovoltaic panel on the car’s roof and a fan in the engine compartment to recharge the battery while driving. So the car can also works with no sunlight.
Oyeyiola stated that batteries take 5 to 6 hours to charge, but he is trying to improve both batteries’ efficiency and charging speed. The African student equipped the Beetle on-board computer with several apps communicating through the GPS system and monitoring the conditions of the car’s technological equipment.
“I wanted to reduce carbon dioxide emissions going to our atmosphere that lead to climate change or global warming. Therefore, I came up of building a car that will use both winds and solar energy for its movement. This was my personal project because of the problem I’m planning to solve,” stated the young Nigerian student to Co.Exist website. Segun Oyeyiola is next planning to design and built wind and solar-powered cars in Nigeria. Tesla Motors would better keep a close eye on it.