Mobius represents a new era of mobility for Africa. Our vehicles are not only more suited to the environment, more broadly they represent a disruptive technology that shifts design focus away from developed world vehicles towards highly affordable, highly functional transport.
The vast majority of vehicles in Africa today are imported from more developed countries such as Japan, UAE, India and China. These vehicles are designed for a very different demographic of predominantly urban consumers in relatively wealthy countries with good road infrastructure. In contrast, vehicles that are driven each day on Africa’s degraded roads are not built for their environment. Because these vehicles are not affordable or functional for most areas throughout the continent, transport entrepreneurs cannot operate ubiquitous and effective transport services and thus millions of transport end-users remain immobile.
Instead of targeting the bottom of the pyramid directly (i.e. selling vehicles to the extreme rural poor who cannot afford any capital outlay), we sell our products to the middle classes who then offer services to the bottom of the pyramid. This is a well tested method employed to deliver services within a sustainable market based structure, examples include maize mills, water taps as well as existing public transit vehicles such as auto rickshaws, minivans and motorbikes. Our vision is a transport platform that empowers local entrepreneurs to mobilise the developing world.
Instead of simply carrying over existing urban transport solutions into drastically different environments, we are introducing an entirely new kind of vehicle built explicitly for Africa. Our vehicle is designed and manufactured to benefit both transport entrepreneur buyers and transport service end-users enabling increased mobility which will in turn unlock socio-economic development. By reframing transportation around the very people who need it most we hope to bring appropriate transit to millions of disadvantaged communities across Africa.
In order to deliver a vehicle that is both more affordable and more functional than existing transport offerings we must make critical tradeoffs in the design process. To reduce costs, we eliminate all non-essential components in the car such as air-conditioning, central locking, interior finishing and even glass windows. More fundamentally, our tubular steel frame eliminates the more substantial unibody structure used in most cars further reducing cost. We shift the focus from comfort to practicality and develop aspects of the vehicle that are most important to the African consumer. Good suspension, passenger capacity and vehicle handling are all aspects that our target customers tell us they want and so these are the aspects we provide - all at a price that more people can afford.