In a move to boost the adoption of electric vehicles in Nigeria, Saglev, a United State EV Manufacturer has concluded plans to begin assembling electric vehicles at its 5000sqm Assembly Plant located in Ikorodu Lagos.
The plant, which is expected to begin production in December 2023, according to the promoter, has an installed capacity to assemble 2500 electric vehicles annually on one shift.
Chairman and CEO of Saglev, Dr. Sam Faleye who spoke at the unveiling of Saglev Electric Vehicles to distributors and dealers in Lagos said the assembling plant has been licensed and approved by the National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC).
The manufacturer had initially introduced similar EVs in neighbouring Ghana where it registered drivers on the local ride hailing platform.
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He said in line with the local content requirement as contained in the National Automotive Industry Development Plan (NAIDP), the manufacturer is determined to have over 30 per cent local content in the production.
According to him, the company would start assembling two models with SKD (semi-knocked down) assembling before graduating into CKD (complete-knocked down) and CBU (complete built up).
The introduction of Saglev brands of vehicles into the Nigerian market was necessitated by its focus on accelerating the transition to Emission-Free Vehicles from Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) vehicles in emerging markets and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Following the removal of subsidy from premium motor spirit (PMS) otherwise known as petroleum, vehicle owners have been looking for alternatives to fossil fuel vehicles with emphasis now on EVs as well as CNG-powered vehicles.
Faleye said Saglev, which has been conducting its feasibility study and working on the roll-out of its EV brands, was compelled to launch the EV models to provide alternatives to Nigeria in the face of the hike in price of PMS.
‘EVs affordable, require less maintenance’
He stated that an EV owner would spend 50 per cent less than the person driving the ICE engines, saying, “EV does not have oil pipe, gear box, crankshaft. The engine is much simpler. All the things that get bought normally in a car; the electric vehicle does not have those things. It is just an electric motor and a battery; the maintenance cost is way less.
“The only things that the electric car does share in common with internal combustion cars include parts such as suspension, tire, headlights, headlamps, shock absorbers, and brake pads. But again, on electric vehicles, the number of times you go to service your car is much less. There is no need to check your oil…”
On the issue of charging, which many people have identified as a source of concern for EV users, Faleye said the charging is minimal.
He said, “In the area of charging, a fully charged car can travel for as long as 300 kilometers on a full charge, this is equal to driving from Oshodi to Ajah 10 times. So, you really do not need to charge your car every day, all you require is to charge the car about once or twice per week.
It also takes about 4 hours with a level two charger to fully charge a car and this can be done while you sleep.”
Besides, the company has partnered with Ardova PLC to have charging stations at every Ardova and Enyo Petrol Station across the country.
The Assembling, Faleye however disclosed, would be an icing on the cake with effect from December 2023.
“The Assembly plant is going to start manufacturing in December 2023. There is a lot of work that has been done. We have been inspected by the NADDC, we have been approved.
“Now all our manufacturing equipment are waiting all over the world, they are already coming in, once they come in, we have to reinstall them, then we have to work with the Federal Ministry of Finance and Customs. We have been working on this for the past two and half to three years. This is the finished line.”’
Head Commercial Development, Ardova Plc, Chimaobi Onuigbo, said through the partnership between the company and SAGLEV, there would be charging stations at their stations across the nation which would benefit both their businesses and the EV users.
He said Ardova partnered with SAGLEV “because we have the spread, we have over 500 stations cut across Nigeria.” “So, what would you find out, for instance, the question someone asked about if my vehicle ran low along the way, I’m sure that if you drove along the Lagos, you know, around Lagos, you would find an AP station, or an Enyo station, so AP and Enyo are one entity today, so you would find any of the stations at least every two kilometres.”