Electric Cars to Tour South Africa in October 2019


BMW, Jaguar and Nissan will be participating in an all-electric vehicle road trip across South Africa in order to showcase how far the tech has come and to show that there is actually charging infrastructre to facilitate such a journey.

In conjuction with the Department of Transport, Gauteng Provincial Government and more, car makers Jaguar, BMW and Nissan are going to attempt something rather daunting: travel across South Africa without consuming a single drop of petrol. The vehicles of choice are the latest iteration of BMW i3, Nissan Leaf and Jaguar I-Pace, which will be leaving Gauteng on the 3rd October and visit places like Gariep Dam, Graaff-Reinet, Port Elizabeth, Knysna, Worcester and the road trip will conclude in Cape Town.

It's not just showing off the technology in the vehicles as some charging stations will be opened on the way down. At each stop members of the public will also get a chance to meet the electric cars and take them for a test drive. Catch up with the convoy here: 

-       Test drive a BMWi3, Nissan LEAF or Jaguar I-PACE at Boardwalk Hotel, Port Elizabeth on 5 October at 4:30pm - 7pm.

-       Learn about the latest innovations in electric mobility by taking a tour of the uYilo eMobility Programme at Nelson Mandela University on 7 October from 8:30am - 11.30am.

-       Witness the power of electric vehicles as the road trippers take part in a sun rise Regeneration Challenge at Simola Hill on 8 October from  5:30 - 6:30 am.

-       Celebrate the launch of another ACDC Dynamics charging station and enjoy test driving experiences at the Vineyard Hotel in Cape Town on 9 October from 11am - 4pm.

With full manufacturer backup from BMW, Jaguar and Nissan, the trip looks like quite an adventure. Tim Abbott, Chief Executive Officer, BMW Group South Africa & Sub-Saharan Africa, says that electric mobility is a main strategic focus of the BMW Group. “The company will now introduce the 25 electrified models previously announced for 2025, two years earlier in 2023. Half of those models will be fully electric.

“Nissan’s contribution to electrification started with the launch of the first ever electric vehicle (Nissan LEAF) in South Africa in 2013. In recent years we have been carrying out several initiatives together with government, key stakeholders and institutions to create strategic alliances to support the creation of a sustainable EV ecosystem in South Africa,” says Kabelo Rabotho, Director of Marketing at Nissan South Africa.  “Nissan’s participation in the EVRT and Smarter Mobility Africa Summit is important in educating consumers on the benefits of electric vehicles and accelerating transformation to smarter mobility.”

Brian Hastie, Network Development Director at Jaguar Land Rover for South Africa and sub-Saharan Africa said: “South Africa is well positioned for mass electric vehicle adoption and this road trip will highlight the recent strides made by various stakeholders, including Jaguar South Africa, in infrastructure development and product availability. Jaguar South Africa introduced its all-electric I-PACE early this year and this platform is a great way to show a broader audience how Jaguar I-PACE customers are already successfully living with electric vehicles and existing infrastructure in urban environments and on long distance journeys. In 2017 Jaguar Land Rover CEO Prof Sir Ralf Speth announced that all new model lines would be electrified by 2020. In South Africa we are on track to deliver the promise with a portfolio of electrified products including fully electric, plug-in hybrid and mild hybrid vehicles."

We'll be catching the convoy entering Cape Town on the 10th October 2019.

Further Reading

BMW i3 120 Ah (2019) Launch Review

New Nissan Leaf Does Electric Better [Video]

Jaguar I-Pace (2019) Launch Review