Wildlife enthusiasts can now enjoy noise-free safari game drives thanks to the first fully electric Land Rover Defender, which allows eco-conscious travellers to experience the African bush in a silent, more natural way.

The eLandy was developed in a collaborative effort by Dutch technology firm Emke Engineering, Kafue National Park’s Mukambi Safari Lodge and Green Safaris (a subsidiary of eVentures).

The eLandy is charged using solar energy, minus the noisy diesel engine. With roughly 90 per cent less maintenance requirements than a fuel-powered vehicle, the Kafue National Park in Zambia (where the vehicle will serve as the park’s game viewer) is looking at a significant saving on driving and operational costs, taking the concept of eco-safari to a whole new level.

The vehicle is right-hand drive and can carry a driver, a guide and a maximum of nine passengers. The eLandy has a battery life of up to 200 000 km and can clock a top speed of 80 km/h with full off-road capabilities – not bad for an electric 4×4.

Ellena van Tonder, Drive South Africa’s sales manager says, “True innovation is creating an eco-friendly vehicle that plays a part in responsible tourism. I hope the trend of using an electric safari vehicle catches on in South African lodges.”

eLandy Specifications:

  • AC induction water-cooled motor
  • Nominal power 50 kW, max of 70 kW
  • Nominal torque 200 Nm, max of 300 Nm
  • 35 kWh high-density lithium-ion iron phosphate battery pack
  • 3 000 cycles at 80 per cent discharge
  • Battery life of up to 200 000 km
  • Quick charge option from a solar panel system
  • Maximum speed: 80 km/h
  • Average speed: 30 km/h
  • Minimum range: 90 km
  • Maximum charging time: five hours
  • Vehicle efficiency: 350 kWh/km
  • Regenerative braking

 

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