Mitsubishi had been planning to start leasing its i MiEV electric car to commercial and government fleets in 2009, with a Japanese retail launch following in 2010. It now looks like that plan might be accelerated by a year. The Nikkei business daily is reporting that Japanese drivers may be able to get their hands on the electric kei car by next summer. The combination of record oil prices and good test results so far has evidently given Mitsubishi the confidence to get the ball rolling sooner than planned. The company could produce as many as 2,000 i MiEVs in the first year, and ramp that up to 10,000 within two years. And what of U.S. availability? Sorry, no word so far.

[Source: Nikkei via Green Car Congress]


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