These Kiira Motors Corporation KMC production-ready electric cars and buses were designed and built by students of Uganda’s Makerere University.
Uganda’s Kiira Motors Corporation (KMC) is an electric cars (EVs) automaker established in 2014. Its aim is to champion the Development of the Domestic Automotive Value Chain for job and wealth creation.
The company is jointly owned by Government of Uganda (96%) and Makerere University holding 4%.
It’s on record that Uganda’s KMC developed Africa’s first electric car in 2011. In addition to this feat, KMC is also the first to develop Africa’s first hybrid vehicle in 2014. It is also the first to build Africa’s first solar electric bus in 2016.
The KMC journey dates back to 2007 when over 31 universities and colleges across the world took part in a Vehicle Design Summit (VDS) to design and bring to market a 5-Seater plug-in hybrid electric vehicle; the Vision 200, targeting the Indian market.
Under the United States-based Massachusetts Institute of Technology led three-year project, Uganda’s Makerere University was the only participant from Africa.
The team from the College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology was responsible for design and integration of the Low Power Electronics and Data Networking Systems.
Given the experience in building the Vision 200, the Makerere team resolved to embark on a project aimed at designing and building a vehicle in Uganda.
The team, with support from the Government of Uganda, then went ahead to successfully develop and unveil Uganda’s first car, the Kiira EV, in 2011.
In 2014, KMC officially became a company owned by the Ugandan government alongside Makerere University.
The establishment of the Kiira Vehicle Plant is projected to increase demand for the utilization of Uganda’s natural resources.
These includes resources like steel from iron ore deposits, plastics from oil and gas, lithium ion batteries from graphite, lithium and cobalt deposits.
Others includes vehicle upholstery and interior padding from cotton and leather, glass from silica and sand among others.
The Kiira Vehicle Plant’s contribution to employment in Uganda is estimated at 940 jobs from the Start-Up Investment.
The full-scale plant operation is estimated to create over 2,000 direct jobs and 12,000 indirect jobs.
Kiira Motors Corporation aim to address the mobility needs of the Target Market with a Product Offering including :
Buses, Light and Medium Duty Trucks, SUVS, Pick-Ups, and Executive Sedans such as the Kiira EVS.
The Kiira EVS, an hybrid four-seater executive vehicle, has undertaken a Nation-Wide Tour in excess of 3,650 kilometers across the country. It is now available for pre-order.
As at January 2020, the Kayoola electric buses were available for sale to the public.