4 Electric Cars Available in South Africa
Globally, electric cars are increasingly popular because they slash carbon emissions.
They’re also quiet and relatively cheap to drive and maintain.
It’s taken a while for them to arrive, but here are four electric cars available in South Africa.
With a price tag of around R500,000, the second generation of the Nissan Leaf is the only “entry-level” electric car available in South Africa.
It features enhanced 40 kWh battery capacity, a 270 km range and a top speed of 120 km/h.
The Leaf is also easy to charge, at home and on the road.
The latest model of the BMW i3 has an improved 260 km driving range produced by a beefed-up battery pack.
It’s responsive, fun to drive and – once you’re used to the higher stance and rounded body – has a style of its own.
Priced from R720,000, the i3 is one of the more affordable electric cars available in South Africa.
Large, luxurious and with a raiseable suspension to maximise ground clearance, the Audi e-Tron is a spacious family SUV.
It’s quiet, has plenty of grunt and an estimated driving range of 315 km.
At R1.6 million, Audi’s first all-electric SUV is targeting the top end of the market.
The Jaguar I-Pace is powerful, agile and luxurious.
It has a range of 400 km and all the creature comforts synonymous with a high-end SUV.
A regenerative braking system, which channels power to the 90 kWh battery to be charged, is one of several innovative features.
The I-Pace could be yours for a little over R1.7 million.
The future of electric vehicles
Vehicles – in the air and on the land and oceans – account for nearly a quarter of all the world’s greenhouse gas emissions.
Electric vehicles (EVs) are central to our collective futures.
According to goals mapped out in the Paris Agreement, 20% of all vehicles should be EVs by 2030.
Yet, globally only 2.5% of cars are electric.
SA fears over cost and range
In South Africa, the situation is worse.
Only 1,000 of the 12 million-plus registered vehicles on our roads are electric.
What’s behind the subdued demand for electric cars in South Africa?
Market experts believe it’s a combination of cost and range anxiety.
We’re a nation of long-distance drivers with a beleaguered power grid.
South Africa’s readiness for EVs
Is South Africa ready for EVs?
The country is way behind other nations but the network of public charging facilities is growing.
The bulk of installations are concentrated along major highways and around commercial and tourist hubs.
This means drivers can now travel longer distances without the fear that they’ll run out of power.
Taxes on EVs
The steep customs duties and import taxes imposed on imported EVs are a real concern.
Unless the government agrees to lower taxes – and offers incentives for local consumers to purchase EVs – car prices will remain high and sales low.
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