Uganda Manufactures Africa’s First Solar-Powered Bus

The kayoola bus manufactured by Kiira motors corporation is a solar-powered bus which was unveiled in Uganda.

The bus uses two power banks (batteries) which power an electric motor that is coupled to a 2-speed pneumatic shift transmission. These batteries operate in automatic alternation. That is, while one is in use, the other is being charged by the solar panels. This increases the bus’ 80kms range.

During the test-drive at Namboole stadium on sunday, the CEO of Kiira Motors Mr Paul  Isaac Musasizi said that the Kayoola was built with about five hundred million Ugandan Shillings (Shs 500m/$144,095)

The 35-seater bus has a  power capacity of 150KW (204HP) Peak and solar power of 1320W.


Uganda is one of the countries through which the Equator passes. Countries that are situated on the equator are usually very hot, and Mr Musasizi made reference to this. He said, “Uganda is privileged to be among the 13 countries in the whole world that are situated along the equator. We decided to take advantage of this strategic position to improve transport technology.”

uganda makes first solar powered bus kayoola

He also mentioned that the buses were made by Ugandans in Uganda.

“The body is typically our Roofing material and was worked on by hand. Also, the battery banks which are stainless steel were also fabricated from here. Uganda possesses polished skills to deliver automotives today.”

The Minister of Higher Education, Science and Technology, Prof. Sandy Stevens Tickodri praised the innovation.

“We have buses all over the world but Ugandans must be proud to be championing a technology that represents clean energy,” he said. “The Kayoola sets a green precedence and inspiration trend for technological future in urban mobility for East and Central Africa.”

The president of Uganda, Yoweri Museveni will officially launch the bus on February 16 at the Kampala Serena hotel.

The Kiira motors is heavily funded by the government. Albeit this is the prototype, the makers of the bus now hope to attract partners to help manufacture the bus en masse.

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