Revealed! Nigeria’s First Electric Car by Stallion Motors

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By Justina Okpanku

The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo has congratulated Stallion Group and its subsidiary, Hyundai Nigeria for introducing the first ever locally assembled electric car into the Nigerian market. He said the Federal Government will support the new effort.

“This is the first electric car that we are seeing here. I commend Hyundai for this initiative, as we continue to support this noble idea. The Federal Government is willing to provide the enabling environment for this technology to thrive,” he said.

The one-of-its- kind Hyundai Kona in Nigeria was unveiled by Minister Adebayo and the Director General, the National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC), Mr. Jelani Aliyu, in the nation’s capital, Abuja, Friday.

Aliyu, meanwhile, has announced plans by the federal government to begin Electric Vehicle (EV) Pilot programme in three universities.

Speaking at the event, Aliyu had also congratulated the Stallion Group (the parent company of Hyundai Nigeria) for the huge achievement. He said the unveiling of the KONA ELECTRIC VEHICLE is a significant milestone for the Nigerian automotive industry and a strong testimony to the achievements of the National Automotive Industry Development Plan (NAIDP).

The Director General urged Nigerians to embrace new technology which, according to him, has empowered businesses and energized private sectors through industrialization.

Also speaking at the event, CEO of Stallion Group Mr. Anant Badjatya said the government has always been forward thinking for the greater good of Nigeria and sustainable means of operations making the nation future ready.  Being here today  (last Friday) and advocating the first electric car locally assembled vehicle further adds to the vision for a greener eco-friendly Nigeria.

Badjatya explained that the electric car comes with zero emission and can be charged both at home and workplace. He said we are working to ensure that we do more work on the new product and make it a lot cheaper for Nigerians.

“Right now the most important thing is for us to understand that we need to embrace the future because this is the future of automobile. We cannot wish it away because the entire world is now embracing EVs as they want to get away from the diesel and petrol engines,” he said. Adding: “The good thing about Nigerians is that they are very innovative, they can embrace and enjoy this technology.”

Mr. Gaurav Vashisht, the brand head, added that Hyundai Kona is a stepping stone towards a greener Nigeria.  He asked a rhetoric question: “The question often asked is, are we ready for Electric Vehicle in Nigeria? I am asking who says we are not ready?”

For him, making it (EVs) affordable and accessible will see most Nigerians adopt in the new normal. “It will be great to simply charge my car at home like a mobile phone and drive around at no fuel cost. Kona offers just that ease to the consumers. The first electric SUV from Hyundai, the Kona can go up to a range of 482 km with an acceleration of (0-100kms) in 9.7 seconds on a single battery cycle of a capacity of 64 KWH. The ease of charging is unmatched and can be plugged in at home or work for 9:35 hours (standard charger) for a full battery, you can also charge Kona battery with ultra-fast charger in 3:30 hours. Its 100% electric with zero carbon emission. KONA Electric is here to change the way people think about going electric,” Vashisht explained.

According to the statement made available by Media and Marketing Stallion Motors, “Global interest in climate change and its effects on the environment and society more broadly is at an all-time high.  Specifically, with the unpredicted pandemic of COVID-19, more countries are increasingly acknowledging the shift that’s needed from a fossil fuel-driven economy to one that is sustainable, green and attempts to mitigate climate change.”

Hyundai Motors Nigeria said they recognised this paradigm shift in the transportation sector by bringing in electric mobility that is a step towards the same goal. For a developing country like Nigeria, not being discouraged by the infrastructural challenges, Stallion plans to launch the first ever Electric Vehicle (EV) in conjugation with Hyundai to embark on the attitudinal change for a clean environment.

Kona electric has been extensively applauded for its class driving range, safety convenience features and fast-charging capability. Its success could be measured by its  successes.  For instance, in April 2020, it was named the ‘Best Small Family Car’ by the inaugural TopGear Electric Awards based on its 24-hour (1,600-km) performance. The EV also played a role in the KONA nameplate winning Spanish newspaper ABC’s Best Car of the Year award. It also won the 2019 North American Utility Vehicle of the Year.

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