By Frank Kintum and Ignatius Ushie
Abuja, the capital of Africa most populous country, Nigeria, currently experiencing a sunny and dusty season, was put to an ecstatic mood yesterday, February 4, 2021, when the National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC), carried out a display of the first locally assembled electric car, the Hyundai Kona electric.
The NADDC team in collaboration with the Stallion team moved in convoys to display the vehicle to excited Nigerian in different areas of the city like Federal Secretariat, Nicon Hilton junction, Silver Bird among others.
The vehicle had earlier in the day been unveiled by a high-powered federal government team led by the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo; Minister of Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola SAN and the Director-General of the NADDC, Mr. Jelani Aliyu, MFR at the Sheraton hotel, Abuja.
Hyundai Kona electric car, assembled by the Stallion Group at its assembly plant in Ojo, Lagos, is Nigeria’s first locally assembled electric car.
Director-General, NADDC, Mr. Jelani Aliyu, MFR congratulated the Stallion Group for the huge achievement, noting that the unveiling of the 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).
Jelani, who is reputed to have designed the award-winning Chevrolet Volt in the United States of America, also stated during the event that “as of 2019, over USD1b had been invested in the Nigeria automotive sector, with over 400,000 installed capacity by credible local and international investors”.
On maximizing the leverage of new automotive technology in line with electric vehicles, the DG said “we are starting with the Hyundai Kona EV. We have built six automotive training centres, which we shall leverage in EV technology transfer”.
He also said “we are proud to be one of the 17 parastatals under the federal ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment. We are very excited with the progress the Stallion group/Hyundai Nigeria are making”.
He urged Nigerians to embrace new technology which according to him, is bound to empower businesses and energize the private sector through industrialization.
The Director-General also revealed that the NADDC is in collaboration with the Usman Danfodio University, Sokoto, University of Nigeria Nsukka and the University of Lagos on an Electric Vehicle Pilot Technology Transfer program.
He added that with the unveiling of the Hyundai Kona electric vehicle in Nigeria, there would be an added impetus to strengthen the project.
The NADDC according to him has also reached an advanced stage of discussion with JAIZ bank, Wema bank and Zenith bank to develop a special incentive on a Vehicle Finance Scheme that would enable Nigerians own Made-in-Nigeria vehicles including the Kona Electric at a single-digit interest rate.
L-R: Representative of the Corp Marshal of the Federal Road Safety Corps, Deputy Corps Marshal Shehu Zaki; a Special Guest; Minister of Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola SAN; Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo; Director-General of the National Automotive Design and Development Council Mr. Jelani Aliyu, MFR and the CEO of Stallion Group, Mr. Anant Badjitya at the Abuja unveiling of the Hyundai Electric Kona February 4, 2021
In a similar vein, the Honorable Minister, Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment Otunba Niyi Adebayo congratulated the Chief Executive Officer of Stallion Group Mr. Anant Badjitya for the achievement of the first assembled Electric Vehicle in Nigeria.
The Hon. Minister said the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment and NADDC are working hard to migrate from petrol vehicles to the use of electric vehicles in Nigeria.
Also, the Hon. Minister, Federal Ministry of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola SAN, commended the commitment, persistence, teamwork and collaboration of the Stallion Group and NADDC that brought about the achievement, adding that the Ministry of Works and Housing would continue to support the automotive industry in Nigeria.
CEO of Stallion Group, Mr. Anant Badjitya was very proud to announce that the Hyundai Kona Electric Vehicle is the first of its kind in Nigeria and Africa, stating that the vehicle possesses great features such as no noise pollution, uses electricity to charge and is very economical to maintain.
Advantages of the Hyundai Kona Electric
Another factor that will grease Kona’s wheel of success in the country is the car’s running cost, which is quite minimal. That will be more so in Nigeria, where most electricity consumers resident in accommodation categorised under R1 are currently charged only about N45 per kilowatt.
At this rate, it implies Hyundai Kona owners would incur only N3300 for a full charge that will do a running of 482 kms, if he or she plugs the car into public power supply. The charging is also as simple as getting your mobile plugged in at your home or office electrical socket.
The ease of charging is unmatched and can be plugged in at home or work for 9.35 hours for a full battery charge and the power consumption for full charging is 143 WH/KM (68.926 kwh for 482km). Besides the Hyundai Kona’s electric power-packed performance for providing a thrilling driving experience, it also manages to excel with its charging kit capacity of 2.3KW, with a voltage of 230V and frequency of 50Hz. The styling of the vehicle is conventional, the interior is luxurious, and the ride is nearly silent.
Kona electric has been extensively applauded for its class driving range, safety convenience features and fast-charging capability, hence it has won many awards and accolades including the Best Small Family Car by the inaugural TopGear Electric Awards based on its 24-hour (1,600-km) performance.
Last year, U.S. News & World Report named it the Best Electric Vehicle. Wards Auto included Kona Electric on its 10 best engines list. In 2018, Auto Express named it the Affordable Electric Car of the Year. 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.