Why Use Electric Cars in Kenya

Electric cars in Kenya have turned out to be a very viable mode of transport in recent times. This has been necessitated by various factors that make them more appealing. The following are reasons why you should own an electric car in Nairobi;

Environment Friendly

Electric cars are environmentally friendly compared to other vehicles. Their impact on the environment is far more significant compared to ones that are run by gas.

Electric cars have no tailpipe and for this reason, they don’t emit any exhaust gases. This reduces the normal air pollution that has been choking the city.

Better Driving Experience

Electric Cars have a more responsive acceleration and regenerative braking when lessening off the accelerator. Moreover, they have a low center of gravity. This improves comfort, handling, and safety.

Electric cars have Less Noise

Compared to diesel and petrol vehicles, electric ones produce less noise. This greatly plays a role in the reduction of noise pollution in the city.

Some electric cars are very quiet and there have been amendments in the rules requiring them to have an Acoustic Vehicle Alert System (AVAS). It produces a sound when reversing or traveling below 20km/h.

Lower Running Costs

The owners of electric cars have the advantage of much lower running costs. The electricity essential to charge an EV is around a third per kilometer as buying petrol for that identical car.

Additionally, EVs face little servicing cost because they do not come with expensive exhaust systems, fuel injection systems, radiators, starter motors, and other parts that are not required in an electric vehicle.

Other advantages of electric vehicles include better resale value, renewable EV tariffs, government subsidies that favor EVs, EV grants, and no congestion charge.

These are but some of the few advantages of using electric vehicles in a city such as Nairobi which is facing all types of issues that come with petrol and diesel vehicles.

Here are a couple of things the government should do to make the shift to electric cars in Kenya plausible in the next five to ten years:

  1. Get into agreements with car companies across the world so that they can set up factories, and assemblies locally. This can be either through land space, taxes, or much more. We already have a couple of companies in the country. Give them incentives to shift to electric cars, and partner with them to build an open charging system that everyone can use.
  2. Break up Kenya Power. Let more companies get into electricity supply so that there’s competition which will help bring more into the space. That way, we will see an easier shift to buildings incorporating charging systems and much more. That way, even upcoming Nuclear Power plans will find a working system where the energy could be fed to different grids.
  3. Properly organize public transport so that when there’s finally an electric charging grid, public transport is made to be fully reliant on electricity. Public transport, not personal cars, is the future.

Even I know that the above will probably never come into effect. Not with an unwilling government, or uneducated people.

Not with the billions our leadership pours into outdated technology as we have with the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), or as we are currently doing with the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system in Nairobi.

However, this article is meant as a contribution of my personal thoughts and ideas to the ongoing public discourse on a better future for Kenya.

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