With the unprecedented rise in fuel prices, one may ask oneself whether the electric car will not become more attractive economically to the Moroccan consumer.
Attractive, the idea nevertheless encounters real barriers that slow down the development of the electric car in Morocco. Switch to el seems inevitable, but it requires an infrastructure-level plan.
By a simple calculation, if we consider that a thermal car consumes an average of 5 liters every 100 km, at a price of 14 DH per. liters, the 100 km would cost 70 DH. On the other hand, for an electric car, if we consider that it consumes an average of 17 kWh every 100 km, with a price of 1.60 DH / kWh, the price for the most expensive disc is at the National Office for Electricity and Drinking Water (ONEE ), the price would be only 27 DH.
Of course, this reasoning does not take into account‘initial depreciation of the vehicle and assumes that the price of fuel remains high.
Asked whether it is advisable to convert to electric in this context with high fuel prices, Hicham Smyej, a journalist specializing in cars and consultant at Médias24, has reservations about the relevance of this idea.
Although he admits it the consumption match is clearly won by the electric – especially since the cost of the interview also speaks for itself – he believes purchase prices are still too high and the difficulties associated with recharging are all deterrents for the motorist who is considering taking the plunge into electric.
The price of the electric car, for animals
According to Hicham Smyej, the electric car costs at least 50% more expensive than the same model in thermal version. The high cost of the battery combined with the still limited sales volume, which does not allow large economies of scale, means that the selling price of the electric car remains high.
For example, the Peugeot 208, which costs around 200,000 DH in its top-of-the-range version if it had been marketed in Morocco in its electric version, would not have been less than 400,000 DH. Today, the cheapest model on the Moroccan market is a compact SUV, the SERES 3, marketed at 400,000 DH.
But most of the models come from premium class with prices over 700,000 DH. The latest on the market is the BMW i4, which is sold for around 800,000 DH. Audi has large SUVs in excess of one million dirhams. Prices that make electricity a primary premium market in Morocco, certainly not within the reach of the middle class.
Dacia, which will soon enter the electricity market with its Spring model of around 200,000 DH, can certainly change the situation. But even if the price barrier is exceeded, there will always be one for the charging infrastructure.
Charging infrastructure, the biggest obstacle for‘adoption of‘electric
To date, Morocco actually has onlyabout sixty public chargers which are located at gas stations, hotels, shopping malls or in private homes. But since they always go in two or fours, their geographical distribution is very uneven.
If you want to own one home charger, you must have the connection provided. People who have individual houses or villas with garages can do so, but in buildings it is much harder to set up. Without a charging facility, it is difficult to choose an electric car, maintains Hicham Smiyej.
In this case, with the increase in household electricity consumption, it will be expected to reach the most expensive parenthesis of the tariff, which reduces the savings on energy consumption by switching to ‘electricity.
The electric car, more interesting for the rich?
Taking all these parameters into account, at present, even with the increase in fuel, which can also be cyclical, it is still not appropriate to convert to electricity in Morocco, says Hicham Smiyej. Especially since there are no real public incentives to take the plunge.
It is that in Morocco there are no purchase bonuses, as is the case in several countries. The most important incentive that exists is to luxury tax exemption, ie to support the purchase of the most expensive cars. An aberration for Hicham Smiyej when we wanted to get startedhelp the wealthy to buy premium cars. For a car costing 1 million dirhams, the state deficit would be 200,000 DH.
If we add the factor of the purchase price and the factor that it is easy to connect in the garage to a villa, the transition to electricity is clearly more advantageous and more accessible to the richest. Especially since they often have more than one car, which can help them to swap with the thermal car, especially when it comes to taking a road where there are no charging stations.
These richest classes are also the most demanding differentiation, which is a typical feature of the premium market.
Faced with the forced march against electricity, Morocco must anticipate
Morocco should not wait any longer; he must prepare very quickly for this forced march towards electricity. Because automakers, especially in European countries, run electric at high speeds.
Europe is discussing a directive that plans to ban thermobiles for sale from 2030. On the horizon of 10 to 15 years, we may not find enough for sale. In addition, in almost five years, there will be no more new cars running on diesel.
Morocco must therefore anticipate and now think about investing in charging infrastructure. But the state does not have to do everything itself: as in other countries, the private sector can do it, in particular oil tankers, which are converted into the distribution of electrical energy. In this case, the state must legislate to encourage and pave the way for private investment.
The government can also start with its own needs, to show the way, by turning to electricity in public markets. But also, why not, start with the ministers’ cars. This would be a strong signal sent to all actors.