FEATURED: Rwanda going green—the Mitsubishi way

Victoria Motors Rwanda Limited (VMRL), Rwanda’s Authorised Mitsubishi distributor has unveiled the car maker’s hybrid electric SUV. Aptly named the Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV), the Mitsubishi PHEV Outlander is a status symbol made with the environment in mind. 

As Rwanda seeks to reduce unhealthy emissions, produce cleaner air and greener cities, Mitsubishi Motors Corporation and Victoria Motors Rwanda Limited are committed to making their contribution towards Rwanda’s Environmental Conservation efforts through promoting technologically inspired transportation in the domestic auto market.

Paving the way for a new era of sustainable mobility, on Friday 20th December 2019, the All New Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV made its Rwanda debut in a colourful ceremony held at the Kigali Serena Hotel. This new electric model embodies the expression of Mitsubishi Motors Corporation’s (MMC) newly introduced global tagline “Drive your Ambition”. 

The Chief Guest at this function was Hon. Ambassador Claver Gatete , Rwanda’s Minister of Infrastructure and the occasion was graced by the presence of The President of Mitsubishi Motors Middle East and Africa; Mr. Takahashi Masahiko, CEO of Rwanda Development Board; Hon. Clare Akamanzi, The Deputy Japanese Ambassador to Rwanda; Ms Yuko Hotta, The British High Commissioner to Rwanda; Her Excellency Jo Lomas among many other dignitaries. 

The Hon. Minister expressed eagerness about the introduction of electric vehicles in Rwanda which will contribute to the reduction of unhealthy emissions in the country. He further reiterated Government’s commitment to promoting the proliferation of electric transportation in line with Rwanda’s Vision 2050 which aims for a greener and healthier Rwanda. The Minister concluded his speech by applauding Mitsubishi Motors Corporation for choosing Rwanda ahead of many African countries to launch the All New Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV. 

“Given Rwanda’s visionary leadership under President Paul Kagame; and Rwanda’s climate change goals in line with Rwanda’s Vision 2050, we see this Electric Vehicle technology as “an idea whose time has come” for Rwanda and soon for the rest of Africa” said Ms. Judith Muhongerwa, Board Chairperson, VMRL.

“Our Group’s driving purpose is to “make a difference in life”. The introduction of this PHEV will enable us and our valued customers to make a tangible footprint towards a greener and healthier Rwanda. The Outlander PHEV is currently the world’s best-selling PHEV and was voted 2019’s Green SUV of the year by the Green Car Journal. Adding this versatile electric vehicle to our exciting model line-up heralds Rwanda’s move towards fully electric transportation.” said Ben Michael Kiiza, the Victoria Motors General Manager.

About the PHEV

The PHEV comes with three drive modes; purely electric, series hybrid and parallel. While the car has an ordinary internal combustion engine, the primary role of the engine is to charge the battery (series mode) while the PHEV is in motion – hence the hybrid classification. This means the user can switch between full electric mode when plying urban routes and series mode when need for speed arises. 

Charging the PHEV using external power is an easy feat. It takes 4 to 6 hours to charge fully and will take only about 12kWh (Rwf3,000 worth of cash power). You cannot get greener than that! 

VMRL have partnered with ASEA Brown Boveri (ABB), an industry leader in electric car charging units to supply the charging infrastructure to users of the PHEV. These charging units are conveniently installed at user’s residence and places of work.

With a 2 litre engine that goes from zero to 100kph in 10.9 seconds, the PHEV driver will enjoy the comfort and stealth of a sport utility vehicle while making unprecedented savings in energy and fuel consumption. The PHEV tackles the challenge of range anxiety associated with fully electric vehicles by automatically charging up the battery on the go, reaping the benefits of an eco-friendly lifestyle choice.

The exterior of the car enjoys LED tech-look headlamps, rectangular front fog lamp bezels, substantial front grille with the dynamic shield visual identity, and a front centre cover skid plate. The elaborate multi-spoke two-tone design of the new 18-inch alloy wheels, and the large rear spoiler give the car a sharp, sophisticated look.

“The introduction of this Mitsubishi electric SUV into Rwanda has been a product of extensive work with engineers and partners at the Mitsubishi factory in Japan as well as ABB engineers in the Netherlands, both of whom have comprehensively trained our local technical team to ensure competent after sales support. With this versatile PHEV now on the road, we look to the future with excitement as together with our valued customers make a contribution to a greener Rwanda.” Engineer Derrick Kaguma – Project Manager EV Mobility, VMRL.

editor@newtimesrwanda.com

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