South Africa might not be the one of the nations that jumps into your head when you hear the word "electric vehicle," but both BMW and Nissan are working valiantly to change that.
2013 Nissan LEAF
The Nissan LEAF will launch in South Africa in late 2013, marking the entry of mass-produced electric vehicles into then African nation. The zero-emissions LEAF will arrive there shortly after South Africa completes the install of at least 50 public charging points, which are to be funded by the countries Green Car Initiative.
Hot on the heels of the Nissan LEAF's entry into South Africa will be 2014 launch of the BMW i3. In South Africa, the i3 is expected to be priced between R 440,000 and R 470,000 (US $47,867 to $51,130) or roughly equivalent to the South African price for an entry-level BMW 5 Series.
BMW even says its radical, ultra-expensive BMW i8 plug-in hybrid sub-supercar will ship to South Africa in limited numbers.
As seems to be the case across most of the globe, the Nissan LEAF paves the way for other electric vehicles to follow. This is no different in South Africa where the LEAF will be considered the nation's first electric vehicle.