From Rosslyn plant to Cairo: Nissan Navara bakkies head into Africa

Published Mar 25, 2024


Nissan is about to embark on a trans-Africa expedition that will take a cluster of Navaras on an eight-country tour ending in Cairo.

The event will be known as the Nissan Daring Africa 2024, and the locally made bakkies will drive through Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi and Tanzania before ending in Egypt.

Nissan says it’s a celebration of the brand and its African heritage as the only manufacturer to have wholly owned plants in South Africa and Egypt, having been here for more than 60 years with its Rosslyn plant in Pretoria, now the Japanese company’s LCV manufacturing hub for the whole continent. The facility in Cairo is the passenger vehicle assembly centre.

Having recently opened new markets in north Africa, Nissan Africa now has representation in every country on the continent.

Last year Nissan announced its expansion plans for the export of the Navara to new markets including Algeria, Libya and shortly in Egypt.

“It’s all part of our mid-term growth strategy, to unlock the potential that this continent has as the world’s last automotive frontier by providing the best line-up of models to answer Africa’s mobility needs in a sustainable, safe and aspirational way,” said Sherief Eldessouky, Nissan Africa managing director.

“This odyssey from the African home of the Navara is a wonderful celebration of this vehicle,” he says. “It’s all-new and built right here in Rosslyn, by Africans for Africans.”

Africa is the world's last remaining automotive frontier because of the low level of vehicle ownership. Elsewhere in the world the global motorisation average is 182 vehicles per 1,000 people versus 42 per 1,000 in Africa.

“We believe in Africa, and we believe in this continent’s potential,” said Eldessouky.

The expedition also aims to breathe life into the concept of the African Continental Free Trade Area to show how the automotive sector holds the key to unlock its potential.

Interestingly, the support vehicle for the Navaras on their odyssey will be the Nissan X-Trail.

The expedition is daring, says Nissan Africa Head of Communications and PR Ramy Mohareb.

“We are proving our promise that the entire range of the Nissan Navara which we build on the continent, is equal to the severest road conditions that Africa has to offer as we connect our two manufacturing hubs on either side of the continent,” he said.