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Finally, an Electric Car Prototype for Africa’s Rural Roads

September 18, 2017

The aCar Prototype – An EV for Africa!

Usually electric cars are sensitive, light-weight vehicles designed to run on smooth surfaces, with optimal wind resistance to ensure the maximum range. This makes them particularly poorly suited for roads in rural Africa, most of which are dirt roads with very uneven surfaces.

The aCar EV Prototype | With medicine platform

This is about to change with the aCar, dubbed as an electric ‘all-rounder’ which is tough and flexible enough to survive harsh conditions. A prototype of the aCar was on show at the International Motor Show in Frankfurt recently.

The aCar EV Prototype | Side view

Designed by the Technical University of Munich (TUM), it has a rugged, four-wheel drive design that can handle dirt roads and off-roading. Even though the 20kW battery only allows for about 100 kilometres of range, the nature of an electric motor which always has access to full torque, makes it both well-suited to clearing obstacles and more reliable.

The aCar EV Prototype | Equipped for transportation

The vehicle is primarily intended for transporting passengers and cargo, with a total load capacity of one ton. The battery offers a variety of other possible applications, either as an energy source or as a drive for high-consumption applications, for example as a winch. A number of various modules have been designed for the cargo bed which can quickly turn the vehicle into a mobile physician’s office, water treatment station or even a medicine platform for example.

The aCar EV Prototype | Real-world testing in Ghana

The aCar successfully completed a series of real-world tests in Ghana in July, and it’s expected to go into production with a target price below set below R150,000 in 2018/2019.


  • Power output: 2 x 8 kilowatts
  • Electric drive range: 80 kilometers
  • Battery capacity: 20 kW
  • Top speed: 60 km/h
  • Tare weight: 800 kg
  • Load capacity: 1000 kg
  • Length: 3.7 m
  • Width: 1.5 m

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