Women-Built Electric Motorbikes Leads Electric Vehicle Revolution in East Africa


Swedish firm Roam is leading the charge to reduce pollution caused by motorbikes in East Africa. The company has developed a cheaper, all-electric alternative to the popular ‘boda boda’ motorcycle taxis that are a common sight on Kenya’s roads – an electric motorbike called Roam Air.

Built by Women

‘Boda boda’ , which are used by around 6% of East Africans as a primary source of income, have been identified as one of the highest CO2-emitting vehicles on the market. Roam has developed an alternative – an electric motorbike called Roam Air, which is designed and built in Kenya. The bikes are constructed by a 40% female workforce, providing employment opportunities for women in a typically male-dominated industry. The motorbikes cost $1,500 (£1,250), making them cheaper than many equivalent motorbikes, and they are emissions-free, with a 75% lower running cost than traditional boda bodas.

Positive Results

Roam’s efforts to provide a cleaner, more affordable alternative have already had a positive impact on the environment and the local economy. The company was a finalist in the Earthshot Prize clean air category and has trialed 160 prototypes in harsh African terrain. Their goal is to produce 150,000 motorcycles per year by 2026. The CEO of Roam, Filip Lövström, said, “We want to help the environment and drivers’ pockets.”

Roam’s mission is to provide a sustainable solution to the problem of air pollution caused by boda bodas in East Africa. The company’s electric motorbikes are a step in the right direction, providing a cheaper, more reliable alternative. With Roam’s plans to increase production, the electric motorbike revolution in East Africa is just getting started. Roam’s mission to provide sustainable alternative to boda bodas in East Africa is a commendable effort towards a cleaner future. By creating job opportunities for women and reducing CO2 emissions, Roam’s electric motorbikes have the potential to make a significant impact on both the environment and the local economy.