Taliban officials present a sports car with a Toyota Corolla engine

  • A team of engineers and designers have built what could be Afghanistan’s first sports car.
  • The car’s power relies on a modified 2000 Toyota Corolla engine, according to a Tolo News report.
  • A Taliban spokesman shared a video of the car, dubbed the Mada 9, baking donuts in the snow.

Afghanistan recently unveiled what could be its first sports car and Taliban officials are acknowledging the achievement.

On Sunday, Zabihullah Mujahid, the Taliban’s official spokesman, shared a video on Twitter of a car making donuts in the snow. He said the car was an honor for the country, reports The Telegraph.

The vehicle, called Mada 9, was built over five years by Entop with a team of 30 engineers and designers from the Afghanistan Technical Vocational Institute, according to a report by Tolo News, a local Afghan news channel.

The head of the school, Ghulam Haidar Shahamat, told the newspaper that the engine was “strong enough” to allow the driver to increase speed. But, he noted, the engine is from a 2000 Toyota Corolla.

“The main purpose is to install an electric motor in it,” he added.

It’s unclear what the car’s specs are or how fast it can go. There is no video of the car moving at high speed or making difficult maneuvers other than the video shared by a Taliban spokesman.

Mohammad Riza Ahmadi, the designer of the Made 9, told Tolo News that he hopes the car will be a beacon for the embattled country.

“This car will be an ambassador and will drive around Afghanistan and convey the value of knowledge to the people,” he said.

One promotional video for the car opens with a shot of the desert floor, strewn with bullets, before zooming in on a disheveled man. After stepping over the path of the bullets, the man approached the covered vehicle to finally reveal Mada 9.

A post shared by ENTOP (@entopco)

Afghanistan’s economy has collapsed since the Taliban seized power in the country in August 2021. According to the US Institute of Peace, the country’s economy shrank by 20 to 30 percent within a year under the regime’s control.

More than one million Afghans fled the country between October 2021 and January 2022, The New York Times reported, citing migration researchers.

In January 2022, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres sounded the alarm to nations due to the dire situation in the country.

“Six months after the Taliban took over, Afghanistan is hanging by a thread,” he said. “For Afghans, everyday life has become a frozen hell.”

Ahmadi, the car’s designer, told Tolo News that the car has received offers but is not for sale. Mada 9 will be exhibited throughout Afghanistan, and perhaps internationally, he said.

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