The state of electric vehicles in Kenya has been interesting in 2022. Many electric car companies have brought their business to Kenya, and while the government and other agencies are trying to encourage people to prepare themselves for a green future, a lot of work needs to be done before that transition can be made.
Nonetheless, there are some key developments that have been made. Some companies such as Roam have released some vehicles that can be purchased by Kenyans. Roam has since released the Roam Air, an electric motorbike that can be purchased for KES 180K. The bike can also be bought via hire purchase via M-KOPA.
In August, Roam also announced a 90-passenger electric bus named Roam Rapid. The bus has been rolled out today alongside pilot partner Kenya Mpya. This is a one-year project that, according to Roam, seeks to address the unique challenges of public transport in Nairobi through reliable, sustainable, efficient, and modern mass transit solutions.
This launch is the first step in Roam’s vision to see city streets paved with hundreds of electric buses by 2023. Initially, the target is the Nairobi Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) tender which will see the deployment of 100 buses onto Kenyan roads.
The bus will operate on the Thika Superhighway, Mombasa Road, and Waiyaki Way as the initial routes. The bus is currently running its operations from Fire Station Lane in the Central Business District to Juja. Fares will be at par with what other bus operators in the industry currently charge.
It has a 384-kWh battery, has a range of 360 km on a single charge. For the bus to return to full capacity, charging will take less than two hours. For this reason, two DC 180kW chargers have been fitted at the Roam warehouse to cater to full charges and top-ups.
“At Roam, we aim to guarantee access to comfortable, equitable, and reliable public transport to shift the masses to electric public transport in Nairobi,” Dennis Wakaba, Project Coordinator, Roam.