Seattle Mayor Introduces City’s First PHEV
Study: Even Low Levels of Air Pollution May Pose Stroke Risk, Current Standards May Be Insufficient

South Africa to Introduce Electric Vehicles

People’s Daily. South African-designed battery-electric passenger vehicles will be unveiled by early next year. The development of the prototype involves a range of stakeholders, including South African universities and industry.

Boni Mehlomakulu, group executive of the department’s [Department of Science & Technology] research, development and innovation program, told SAPA that both a passenger and a utility vehicle were currently being developed.

The passenger vehicle, “designed by a former Jaguar designer,” was a six-seater. It had a range of between 100 km and 400 km, depending on the speed at which it was driven, and the roof incorporated solar panels to help charge the battery when it was parked in the sun. The utility vehicle, which Mehlomakulu described as “like a panel van,” was a three-seater.

The vehicles will use batteries imported from China.

Initial production in 2010 is planned to be about 4,000 vehicles per year. Initially, the vehicles are intended for use in the government fleet.


This sounds like another 4000 battery sets for China's top Li battery company ... and possibly another production boost to bring even greater economies of scale to their production.

Pricing will be a big factor in sales, so if the price can be kept low enough, many will be able to afford to drive.

At minimum, this will provide slightly cleaner inner city air and encourage a more technically advanced workforce in South Africa.

Again, a Win Win Win endeavor.


____RSA has an electric generation capacity shortage. It will not get better until the new plants, and other infrastructure, come online a few years from now. Even then, the supplies will be tight as the neighbors, who are dealing with increasing demand (from economic growth) and inadequate supplies themselves, depend on South African electric exports for part of their needs.
____Perhaps these countries should (and probably are) look into increasing the efficiency of their existing plants, as well as solar, wave, and wind energy.
_SA depends on coal for electric power, and thus an increase in plant efficiency will ease the crunch while decreasing coal demand.
_The Kalahari and Namibian deserts can provide locations for wind and solar energy production and can connect with the existing HV power grid in Namibia and Botswana. Transmission grid upgrades will allow power exportation to South Africa, and other southern African nations. The same applies for wave energy.



The arrival of many million (eventually billions) Hybrids, PHEVs and BEVs with higher capacity batteries, to recharge daily, will justify many more low pollution power plants.

Wind, Waves and specially Solar will be called upon to supply a major portion if we can develop very large ESSUs at an acceptable cost.

Without large capacity ESSUs to store power from intermittent sources, a few (even many) additional up to date nuclear power plants will be essential in most countries.

Many will oppose a return to Nuclear, but it is almost unavoidable if transportation vehicles are to be massively electrified, as it should.


why cant america do that? becuase our politicians are in bed with the oil companies

South Africa is now manufacturing and exporting small capacity (5-10 kw) wind generating turbines. They have achieved both quality and price competitiveness in the global market.

We can expect a huge proliferation of wind generated power in all of Africa due to this initiative by South Africa.


Anon, could you please point to a link for the South African wind-turbines?

I'm very interested to read more.


I am a South African and I will believe it when I see it.


I want one asap. This was promised in early 2000, and it got shelved. GM's EV1 was great but never even got into the public eye, hence "Who killed the electric car - Documentary". I will support this initiative and would like to contribute in ideas that they could implement such as: alternators on the free wheels to charge the car while going downhill.

Is there anyone out there that can do this conversion to existing cars at a price? i wouldn't mind cutting up my car and ending up not paying R2000-R3000 or more for petrol every month.

Let's break the addiction

Garth Oellermann

Can someone please give me information on how to convert an existing 1994 Volkswagen Jetta 1600 CL into an EV and what the +- cost would be.

Garth Oellermann


@Garth: Have a look here


That South African wind turbine company:

The comments to this entry are closed.