2020 wasn’t a good year for new car sales in South Africa, and it really wasn’t a good year for electric car sales.
How many electric vehicles do you think were sold in the country last year?
Go on, have a guess.
I’m even spacing things out so that you don’t see the answer before you’ve had time to ponder.
In total, during 2020, of the 380 206 vehicles sold in the domestic market, just 92 electric vehicles were sold, which accounts for 0,02%.
That’s down from 154 units sold in 2019. Hybrid vehicle sales accounted for 232 units last year.
The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC), led by Minister Ebrahim Patel, is now taking steps towards a roadmap “for the production of full electric vehicles (EVs) in the country with the publication of an Auto Green Paper”.
“We need to do that with urgency because the reality of climate change is such that countries are setting targets of how many fossil fuel vehicles they want on their roads and we want investors and headquarters of OEMs to see South Africa putting up its hand very early in the decision-making process about where production will be located in future.
“You miss that bus, then others would have a consolidated presence in the electric vehicle market,” [Patel] said.
One of the major stumbling blocks regarding domestic growth in the sale of electric vehicles is cost, with traditional internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles often far cheaper.
Business Insider SA says changes are being considered to try and remedy this:
To lower the cost of EVs, the DTIC and National Treasury are considering reducing ad valorem excise duties which hike the price of both locally produced and imported “luxury items”…
A “Challenge Fund”, aimed at rewarding manufacturers who produce South Africa’s first EVs, has also been touted. Creating a “second life” for EV batteries – whereby they can be used to power homes during load shedding – is also intended to attract local consumption.
Electric vehicles and Eskom don’t seem to go hand in hand, do they?
There also needs to be a drive for EVs to make use of renewable sources of energy.
You can read more on our electric vehicle strategy here.
92 cars over an entire year – that’s wild.
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