Sitting In A Proper-Hand Drive Rivian R1T Pickup Bought Me Pondering We Actually Want These Pickups In Africa ASAP

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A right-hand drive Rivian R1T Pickup? Sure, you learn that accurately. I used to be lucky to get an opportunity to take a seat in a single and test it out in Nairobi, Kenya. From the data I gathered, this is without doubt one of the solely ones made thus far and this was for a particular goal, becoming a member of a few of the earlier left-hand drive variations delivered to Kenya final yr.

I need to say, the Rivian R1T is gorgeous. It’s a gorgeous all-electric pickup constructed for individuals to get pleasure from in each an city setting in addition to off-road. Though gross sales of name new autos in most African nations are fairly low, as imports of used autos dominate, the model new pickup market is definitely one of many huge contributors of gross sales and presents a really viable marketplace for makers of pickup vehicles to maneuver important volumes.

Numerous nations on the continent, particularly in west and central Africa, drive on the opposite facet of the street, much like the USA and China, but a lot of the nations in southern and east Africa drive similar to in England and due to this fact want right-hand drive fashions. Due to this fact, to cater to most of those markets that love pickups, a truck that’s accessible in each left-hand drive and right-hand drive shall be very welcome on the African continent. Sitting on the right-hand facet of that Rivian R1T obtained me pondering that we actually want extra of those pickups in Africa.

The factor is, pickups are huge deal in some elements of Africa final yr. Over 170,000 model new pickups have been bought on the continent, greater than in the entire of Europe. Not as many as in Latin America, in some elements of Asia and within the USA, however 170,000 a yr is an effective quantity to draw consideration. Simply over 100,000 of those model new pickups have been bought in South Africa, the place Toyota’s Hilux and the Ford Ranger Pickup are very fashionable. The Rivian R1T is a similarly-sized pickup truck.

So, Rivian, can we kindly get the R1T Pickup in full manufacturing in right-hand drive? I’m certain the South African market, plus different markets like Kenya, can take up a big variety of models to justify this. The R1T may land at a little bit of a premium when it comes to pricing in comparison with a few of the high spec Toyota Hilux and VW Amarok, however I’m fairly certain if it was to be provided in pickup-crazy South Africa, the R1T may transfer some important models. South Africans love their Bakkies, as they’re popularly referred to as on this a part of the world. After all, the left-hand drive mannequin is already accessible within the USA, so can we additionally get these to some left-hand drive markets on the continent?

Why Africa? Nicely, the R1T might be one among, if not the one, actual off-road succesful double cab pickup that’s commercially accessible anyplace on the planet. It has additionally confirmed itself in a lot more durable environments, together with in wildlife conservation areas and sport parks in Kenya, which implies it is going to be completely tremendous for the odd run to the mall in most locations in Africa. A well-liked joke right here in Africa, as lots of pickup consumers right here actually simply use them for city driving on completely paved roads to do their faculty and procuring middle runs. For actual although, lots of pickups are used on farms and on mining campuses as nicely, and by individuals within the trades trade (photo voltaic installers, plumbers, and different areas). These individuals have a tendency to purchase Toyota Hiluxes and Ford Rangers, and so on. Given the R1T’s good vary and wonderful off street capabilities, and the rising charging networks in South Africa and Kenya, for instance, this all-electric truck may very well be a game-changer if launched on the continent. After all, lots of the amount consumers like mining and building corporations are likely to function round campus environments the place fleet charging is fairly simple, and due to this fact this shall be a fair less complicated transition for them.

One more reason to think about getting into some African markets as quickly because the manufacturing ramp-up permits, and make these their first markets after the USA in important volumes, is that the volumes of latest pickup gross sales in South Africa, for instance, current addressable marketplace for which they will goal a good market share to go electrical, and likewise current a chance to fastidiously handle the ramp-up of export quantity of the R1T pickup. The volumes right here shall be simpler to handle throughout the ramp-up than different locations that promote say 900,000 models per yr ,the place even focusing on a ten% share will imply 90,000 models. Concentrating on a ten% share in South Africa will imply about 10,000 models a yr, which might be a extra managed ramp-up of export plans.

I actually hope Rivian places these African markets as a precedence for the subsequent markets after the USA. The great factor is that Rivian will have already got indication of how its vehicles will carry out in a few of the harsher environments from the models that it already has on the bottom in Kenya. Different functions, resembling for farmers and mining corporations, will due to this fact be lighter train for the R1T.


Pictures by Remeredzai in Nairobi, Kenya.


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