Ol Pejeta Conservancy wants to crowdfund a diesel hybrid safari vehicle

Crowdfunding has not been kind to electric vehicle projects. The Derringer electric bike, while cool, didn't make it. The ultra-fast battery charger idea raised just $2,666 out of a $50,000 goal. And there are many more failed examples. (That Kickstarter project for that EV coloring book, on the other hand, did reach its modest goal.)

Nonetheless, the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya is looking for help from the greater Internet to create a diesel-hybrid electric vehicle to use for safari expeditions in the park, which claims to be "East Africa's largest black rhino sanctuary." The problem, the park says in its IndieGoGo campaign, is that current safari vehicles in some ways distance the visitors from the experience, thanks to those noisy, diesel powertrains.

Thus, Ol Pejeta wants to create a new vehicle that will be designed to provide better animal viewing and have the ability to run silently. The group is asking for $50,000 to complete the design and blueprint process, which will be done by the Royal College of Art. Green Automotive, the company that bought Liberty Electric Cars and its plans to create electric Liberty Range Rovers, has agreed to act as powertrain advisers and will provide production at cost.

The $50,000 goal is just step one. Ol Pejeta says it would like to raise $100,000 to create the first prototype. Sadly, while we're all for using EVs to sneak up on lions, we don't have a lot of hope for this particular crowdfunding project. It's been up for two weeks already and only raised a smidge over $700. Ol Pejeta seems to be aware that things could go south. The listing reads: "In the event that we raise more than the design process but less than prototype production then rewards will continue to be honoured and the funds will go towards ongoing conservation innovation on Ol Pejeta."

Safari Vehicle of the Future from Ol Pejeta on Vimeo.

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