Absence of relevant legislation and infrastructure would hinder many African countries from being part of the ongoing global automobile electrification revolution, Nissan Motor Corporation has said.
Mr. Amit Sharma, general manager of Stallion NMN, Nigeria’s exclusive representative of Nissan brand, made the assertion at the 2023 Nigeria Auto Journalists Association’s training workshop held in Lagos, recently.
Sharma noted that, while the world is moving towards full electrification, EV policies govern everything from the duties and tariffs payable on EVs brought into the country all the way to the establishment of charging infrastructure in urban planning.
Without them, he pointed out, it is expensive to import EVs, and it is difficult to find charging points for them in public and commercial areas.
“Africa is the last automotive frontier,” he explained. “We call it this because of the motorisation rate of 42 vehicles per 1 000 people, which is the lowest in the world. Indeed, the global average of 182 is several times higher than Africa’s.”
The continent, he alluded, has a huge need for mobility solutions; “vehicles that can be trusted to perform to their optimum ability in the countries in which they operate, which means designing a vehicle like the Nissan Navara especially for the road severity and the fuel.”
According to him, another drawback is the considerably longer distances that are experienced on the continent to which Nissan has developed a panacea with its revolutionary E-Power technology.
He said: “Range anxiety or the amount of power you have in your battery, just like your mobile phone or your lap top, is a major concern, which is even worse when there is not an infrastructure of charging stations that you can rely on.
“This is where Nissan’s E-POWER, a revolutionary technology already introduced to both the Qashqai and the X-Trail, is such a game changer.
“The E-POWER is not a hybrid engine, but an electric engine, where the electricity is generated by a smaller internal combustion engine.
“Best of both worlds, it does away with range anxiety, but introduces all the benefits of electrification, like the incredible torque and performance that we have been witnessing, especially on the Formula E circuit.
“Electrification is the future, E-POWER provides us with an incredible solution in a continent which has the challenges which Africa has.”
Nissan Motor Corporations is both a pioneer in the field of electrification through the development of the world-famous Nissan LEAF as well as its groundbreaking investment and commitment to the Formula E.
The automaker’s involvement in Formula E, which had its African debut early 2023 in South Africa, began as a road-to-track initiative. Today, that has been reversed; the track is the place where innovation is introduced, tested in real time, real life conditions, the toughest imaginable, across the world.
And then, when Nissan engineers were confident, those innovations were introduced to the road through the company’s new models to the benefit of the motorists.
There are many innovations that have made motoring better, faster and safer because of Nissan’s commitment – from E-POWER to E-4ORCE regenerative breaking and all-wheel drive technology, the smart pedal and even battery life.
The innovation goes far beyond the track too, with second life for the battery packs becoming indispensable as the world pivots to renewable energy, allowing private homes to produce and store power. But electrification is only one part of this journey.
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