Marathon Motor Engineering Plc, a pioneer in assembling electric cars in Ethiopia has launched the first electric car charging station and its second model Hyundai Kona SUV electric vehicle.
The launch was held in a ceremony on December 28, 2021 in the presence of different government officials and guests at the premises of Marathon Motor Engineering.
“The electric cars assembled locally could have vital benefit to the country in saving cost and hard currency fee of fuel,” said Melkamu Assefa, managing director of Marathon Motors while speaking on the company’s plan to introduce and expand electric car manufacturing with affordable price to the community by 2025. The company plans to shift 80 percent of its production into electric cars. During the ceremony, Marathon Motors rolled out 20 electric cars with an estimated price tag of up to 3.3 million Ethiopian birr.
The company has assembled more than 14 vehicle models and has already begun to launch different models of Hyundai electric cars in two rounds.
“The National Bank of Ethiopia will try to support those investments that contribute to curbing costs for fuel and cut foreign currency expenses,” said Yinager Dessie (PhD), Governor of the National Bank of Ethiopia while speaking at the event. The governor further elaborated that Ethiopia spends about 2.5 billion dollars annually for fuel consumption.
Owned by Ethiopia’s Olympic gold medalist and business tycoon, Athlete Haile Gebreselassie, Marathon Motor Engineering PLC (MME) was founded in 2008 and was officially inaugurate in February 2009 as an importer and distributor of Hyundai passenger, commercial vehicles and genuine parts in Ethiopia. Marathon is the first company to introduce the first fully locally assembled electric car HYUNDIA Ionic in July 2020.
Currently there are about 40 vehicle assembly plants in Ethiopia. In Ethiopia, a country with the lowest numbers of cars in the world at 1.1 million, of which half are located in the capital, demand for cars is high. Out of the total number of cars, 219,699 vehicles are small automobiles.
It is certainly not common to see electric cars on Addis roads let alone newly assembled cars.
“Commencement of the new electric cars’ assembly line is aligned with the government’s priority to build a climate-friendly economic growth as the vehicles have zero emission of carbon dioxide,” said the CEO of Marathon Motor.
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