Durban - Electric cars are a rare sight in South Africa for a multitude of reasons, and although certain carmakers such as Audi, BMW and Mercedes are planning an onslaught of electric models from next year, it could still be a while before we see some of the popular overseas models like the Tesla Model 3 and Ford Mustang Mach E being officially introduced.
Following last week’s report that a Tesla Model 3 had entered the country as a private import (read more here), we received word that a Mustang Mach E had arrived in the country and was now listed on AutoTrader with an asking price of R2.1 million.
The vehicle is being sold by the SA Car Import Agency, a Durban-based company that calls itself a “one stop vehicle shipment specialist”.
Having been imported from Europe, the vehicle is right-hand drive, however the importer stresses that it is strictly a grey import, which means that no dealer support is offered or implied.
The vehicle on offer locally is a standard range, rear-wheel drive Mustang Mach E, which is priced from £40 350 (R850 000) in the UK, but keep in mind that import taxes and duties for these vehicles could more than double the local price. Being a personal import, the owner will also have to keep the vehicle for at least two years before selling it.
The RWD Mustang Mach-E comes with a 75.7kWh battery that offers a claimed range of around 440km between charges.
Power comes from a rear-mounted electric motor that produces 198kW and 430Nm, allowing for a claimed 0-100km/h sprint time of 6.9 seconds.
But are South Africans showing more interest in electric cars?
We approached AutoTrader CEO George Mienie for comment, and he feels that the listing of a Mustang Mach-E on the website was an inevitable sign of things to come.
“The growth in interest in electric vehicles (EV) in South Africa was inevitable: EVs are growing in popularity all over the planet,” Mienie said. “The reality is that – both globally and within the borders of South Africa – there is demand for EVs as a result of environmental concerns, the requirement for greener mobility and impending regulations. It was only a matter of time before South Africans would mimic their international counterparts.”
Mienie further pointed out that AutoTrader’s 2021 Electric Vehicle Buyer’s Survey showed a substantial interest on the part of potential buyers.
“Search behaviour was far higher than ever before; we saw a 210% growth in searches for EVs in South Africa. Similarly, the survey found that EV consumer advert views were up 234% year-on-year while EV enquiries were up 44%.
“Given this level of interest, don’t be surprised to see more vehicles like the Ford Mustang Mach E for sale on AutoTrader in the not-too-distant future!” Mienie concluded.