For West African countries like Nigeria, EVs could be imported from the United States and Europe. South Africa does not allow imports of used vehicles in a move to protect its local vehicle manufacturing industry and subsequent local used vehicle market.
A lot of the OEMs have not expressed any interest in bringing EVs to the rest of Africa anytime soon. With the majority of them struggling to meet demand in their home and traditional markets, it doesn’t look like Africa will be a priority anytime soon. Elon Musk had hinted a while back that the Tesla Model 3 could come to South Africa but later expressed disappointment with regards to South Africa’s punitive import duties on EVs.
There are a lot of positives coming out of the Indian EV market. Spurred on by India’s excellent Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Electric Vehicles (FAME II) policy, the Indian EV market is starting to boom. Two and three-wheeler ICE vehicles are popular modes of transportation in East and West Africa. Affordable electric scooters, motorcycles, and three-wheelers powered by Lithium-Ion batteries with ranges of 50 to 100 km are now widely available in India. With pricing from $700 to just over $2,000, these EVs from India would be a whole lot more budget friendly for prospective buyers in Africa. Most African countries have low import duties for motorcycles and three-wheelers, making it easier for suppliers to ship these and price them competitively with their ICE equivalents. The import duties get even better when one imports partially knocked down kits for final assembly in Africa.
Fact is Africa is more budget conscious anyway and is not likely to be flooded with a supply of Tesla's any time soon. It is certainly towards the East we need to be looking for ordinary driver EVs.
A lot of the OEMs have not expressed any interest in bringing EVs to the rest of Africa anytime soon. With the majority of them struggling to meet demand in their home and traditional markets, it doesn’t look like Africa will be a priority anytime soon.