According to a report by Punch, there has been a surge in demand for bulletproof Sports Utility Vehicles (SUVs) in Nigeria, attributed to the increasing incidents of kidnappings and insecurity across the nation.
Dealers interviewed by The Punch disclosed that they had observed a notable rise in sales of bulletproof SUVs amidst the escalating cases of kidnappings.
The prevailing safety concerns in Nigeria have prompted a heightened demand for customized bulletproof SUVs, particularly among Very Important Persons (VIPs) and affluent individuals.
In recent months, the surge in kidnapping and abduction cases nationwide has significantly elevated personal safety as a paramount concern for Nigerians.
Armored vehicle dealers in Nigeria, speaking to The Punch, affirmed that they have witnessed an uptick in sales of customized bulletproof SUVs since the escalation of the kidnapping crisis.
Discussing the increased demand for armored vehicles among VIPs, Mr. Haresh Jethmalani, Sales Manager at Inkas Armoured Vehicle Manufacturing Nigeria, remarked:
“The demand for armored vehicles has surged exponentially. Prices have also risen due to the heightened demand. Additionally, challenges with customs duties and foreign exchange rates have significantly impacted our operations. Consequently, we are unable to disclose the identities of our clients or the specific sales figures. However, it’s evident that there’s a considerable increase in demand for armored vehicles due to the prevailing situation in the country.”
Mark Burton, President of Armor Max Vehicles, echoed similar sentiments, stating:
“We’ve experienced a substantial surge in demand. Our primary challenge lies in currency fluctuations. Typically, clients invest between $35,000 and $90,000 on armor plating in addition to the vehicle cost. Our armor plating materials are imported into Nigeria, and the costs have escalated significantly due to challenges with the naira-to-dollar exchange rate. Nonetheless, the escalating violence and insecurity have underscored the necessity for our products. Armormax Nigeria has witnessed notable success and expansion into other countries like Ghana and Cameroon.”