The national uYilo eMobility Programme was established in 2013 as an initiative of the Technology Innovation Agency (Act 26 of 2008) to enable, facilitate and mobilise electric vehicle mobility in South Africa.

As a multi-stakeholder programme, the uYilo Programme has various activities that include government lobbying, industry engagement, pilot projects, capacity development, enterprise development and thought leadership.

Supporting expertise and facilities extends across national accredited battery testing, material testing, vehicle systems, and a smart grid ecosystem that serves as a live testing environment for interoperability of the various system components of the smart-grid.

The technology landscape extends across renewable energy generation, second-life electric vehicle batteries integrated as stationary storage, Vehicle-to-Grid of ancillary grid services from electric vehicles, and an autonomous energy management system providing resilient charging infrastructure for electric vehicles aligned to international smart grid protocols.

Hosted by the Nelson Mandela University, the programme seeks to ready South Africa for introduction of electric mobility technologies.

The name of uYilo is derived from the local Xhosa language which means “to create”, along the motive of creating this new industry in South Africa.

The Electric Vehicle EcoSystem is diverse and makes up various industries and technologies.

Electric Vehicles

An electric vehicle (EV)is a vehicle that uses electric motors for moving. EVs cover a wide range of vehicles such as road, rail, underwater, air and space. The sky is not the limit when it comes to EV of the future. 

EV Components

The type of battery, the type and size of the traction motor and the motor controller look very different depending on the use of the Electric Vehicle. Some are small for motorcycles and scooters, going up to large vehicles like trucks and residential cars. 

Battery Technology

The advances in lithium-ion batteries have increased in leaps and bounds, first driven by the electronics industry, and then the need to allow vehicles to drive as far on one charge as a conventional fuel car. This has resulted in recharging times being reduced, production costs dropping and alternate technologies being developed (including solid-state batteries). 

Charging Infrastructure

An electric vehicle charging infrastructure is a system of charging stations to recharge electric vehicles. Many government, car manufacturers, and charging infrastructure providers sought to create networks.

Other Areas within the EV EcoSystem

EV Standards; Smart Grids; Energy Generation; Battery Recycling; Battery Second Life; EV Services; Apps; Connectivity and Mobility Options.




Electric Vehicle Systems

Our Facility provides Mobility Platform Development and Integration across all the full spectrum of e-Mobility. 

Learn more about Electic Vehicle Systems

Smart Grid EcoSystem

Our Live Testing Environment creates a platform for the Electric Vehicle EcoSystem to facilitate universal connectivity between electric vehicles and supportive smart grid infrastructure.

Learn more about the Electric Vehicle Smart Grid EcoSystem 

Battery Testing Laboratory

We are nationally accredited and support local manufacturing companies, providing accurate and repeatable testing services for new storage solutions and validation of existing battery technologies.

We provide testing in both Lead-Acid Batteries and Lithium Battery.

Get in touch with our Battery Testing Laboratory 

Material Characterisation

We analyse materials from a variety of industries (battery, cement, pharmaceutical, etc).

We offer a diverse range of services such as X-ray diffraction (material identification); X-ray fluorescence (elemental composition); Melt flow indexing (MFI) of thermoplasts and BET Surface Area Analysis.

Contact the team for your Material Characterisation requirements. 


The uYilo ‘Kick Start’ fund was established to support local industry related projects by providing an agile mechanism of grant funding that will accelerate Technology Readiness Levels (TRL) and lead to the creation of products, processes or services that can be commercialised to advance localisation of the South African eMobility industry.