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Did You Know That The Izuozu Z-600 Was The First Indigenous Car in Nigeria?

The Izuogu Z-600 prototype was the first indigenously manufactured car in both Nigeria and all of Africa. Ezekiel Izuogu, an engineer, was the inventor. When it was launched in 1997, the car caused a stir in the Nigerian media and was promoted by General Oladipo Diya, who was then Nigeria’s chief of staff.
The prototypes self-built 1.8L four-cylinder engine, which achieved 18 mpg and gave the vehicle a top speed of 140 km/h, was fitted with the vehicle (86 mph).

Due to the higher cost of fabricating a transmission tunnel, which RWD would need, Front Wheel Drive (FWD) was selected over Rear Wheel Drive (RWD). 90% of the car’s parts were produced in the area. With its upright stance and a front end that loosely resembles the locally produced Peugeot 504, the car’s design was quite utilitarian and resembled a Renault 4.
It would have been the world’s cheapest car if it had cost $2000. It accomplishes its low price objective thanks to innovative features like a doorbell utilized in place of a horn.

The car was introduced at an event that was well-organized by Abacha, who was represented by the Chief of General Staff, Lt. Gen. Oladipo Diya. Over 20 foreign ambassadors attended the occasion. Dr. Izuogu was promised a grant from the government worth N235 million. Both the pledge and the government’s help were never fulfilled. Instead, Nigerians, particularly in the media, criticized the car aggressively and publicly.

Other African nations began showing interest in the Z-600 in 2005. The South African government showed a significant interest in the vehicle in 2006. They desired that Izuogu build it in South Africa. They invited him to establish a factory there and start mass-producing the automobile. Izuogu accepted reluctantly. He claimed that he disagreed with the notion that Nigerians would not gain jobs as a result of the project.

However on March 11, 2006, 12 armed men with great force broke into Dr. Izuogu’s factory in Naze, Imo State. The design history notebook for Z-600 was among the equipment the men hauled off. They also took the Z-MASS design file, which contained the history of design for the Z-600 car’s mass production. Also stolen were the molds used to make various automotive parts.

This significantly hampered the project. Since then, little is known about the car’s condition. However, there have been rumors that unlicensed replicas of the vehicle are being produced in a number of nations worldwide.
The World International Property Organization is now working with Dr. Ezekiel Izuogu to design and develop the “Izuogu Engine,” an electromagnetic automobile engine.

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