• Mar 24th 2010 at 9:31AM
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Mitsubishi i-MiEV – click above for high-res image gallery

The Mitsubishi i-MiEV isn't getting any cheaper as availability expands beyond Japan and the next market to get the lil' electric runabout will be the United Kingdom. Including the 17.5 percent value added tax, the i-MiEV will run British buyers a cool £33,699 before a £5,000 government subsidy. That equates to about $50,500 at current exchange rates, and even bearing in mind the UK's inflated auto prices, it still seems well above the pre-subsidy price in the low $40K range in Japan.

On the EU test cycle the range estimate has dropped from the 100 miles measured in Japan to only 80 miles and real world results will likely be less than that.

Even with an electrical operating cost of about $214 for 12,000 miles of annual driving, it's going to take a long time
to come out ahead financially. The standard gas engined i is not available in the UK, but the sub-compact Colt starts at just £8,999. On the other hand, early adopters are helping to subsidize the future, if they can afford the present.


[Source: Mitsubishi]



Mitsubishi Motors (UK) is pleased to announce the on-sale price of the Mitsubishi innovative Electric Vehicle – the i-MiEV.

Price and Incentives

For orders delivered to the customer from January 1st 2011, to coincide with the UK government's recently announced Consumer Incentive Scheme, the price has been set at £33,699 including VAT. The government grant will be worth £5,000 off the purchase price of qualifying electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles.

The ultra-low running costs of the i-MiEV are a key advantage over other cars, with additional incentives including:

* Only £115 fuel costs for 12,000 miles driving (£0.96 pence for a full charge)
* Low servicing costs and downtime – only approximately 4 working parts compared to over 300 in a typical internal combustion engine
* Exempt from road tax (saving approx £300 per annum)
* First year capital allowances for fleet vehicles
* Zero benefit-in-kind company car tax
* Lower rate of VAT for domestic electricity
* Exempt from congestion charge (saving up to £2,000 per annum)
* Free parking in many London boroughs and cities such as Milton Keynes
* Expected high residual values due to high demand outstripping supply for several years to come

Lance Bradley, Mitsubishi Motors UK's MD

Lance Bradley, Mitsubishi Motors UK's Managing Director, said:

"These are exciting times for the motor industry in the UK. This is the biggest change in the automotive industry since it began some one hundred years ago, so to be able to offer our zero emissions car for this price is a truly great achievement.

We are aware that, by their very nature, any new technologies always command a premium, which has been true for anything from plasma televisions to cars. Others make price claims and estimations, but we have a real vehicle that is available now and is proven in the real world."

Customer Orders

Mitsubishi's newly opened Electric Vehicle Centre in Central London has already taken its first orders for delivery in January, and enquiry levels have soared following the Government's consumer incentive announcement on 25th February.

The Mitsubishi Electric Vehicle Centre has been operational for customer enquiries and demonstrations since mid-February and customers can contact the Centre on 0207 546 8331 or via email at imiev@mitsubishi-cars.co.uk.

Personalise with Bespoke Accessories

The i-MiEV's award-winning design makes a big statement in its own right, but Mitsubishi Motors (UK) will also be offering a bespoke accessory programme for the i-MiEV.

Customers will be able to fully personalise their car from a wide range of environmentally friendly and premium accessories including floor mats made from bio-degradable bamboo fibre; specialist leather seat trims including a monogram service; and a special collection of exterior vehicle designs – from Union Jack Flags to special customer requests.


The European Whole Type Vehicle Approved i-MiEV has been engineered to achieve a target Euro NCAP crash test rating of 4-stars and illustrates that customers do not need to compromise in any area.

The days of the 'milk float' mentality are truly over as the following specification proves.

Vital Statistics:

* Zero CO2 tailpipe emissions
* Top speed 81 mph
* Range 80 miles (EU combined mode, estimated)
* Seating capacity – 4 adults, plus luggage
* 12-months / 12,500 miles service intervals
* 3-year warranty and pan-European accident and breakdown cover
* Kerb weight – 1,105 KG
* Dimensions – 3,475 (l) x 1,475 (w) x 1,610 (h)


* 47kW AC permanent magnet synchronous motor (max power)
* 1-speed fixed gear
* Front McPherson strut and coil spring suspension
* Rear 3-link de Dion suspension
* Front stabilizer bars
* Front 14" ventilated disc brakes
* Rear 8" drum brakes
* 9" master vac brake boosters
* ABS (Anti-lock Braking System) with EBD (Electronic Brake-force Distribution)
* Brake assist
* ASC (Active Stability Control)


* Alloy wheels
* All-round 'green' glass
* Colour-keyed front bumper
* Projector type halogen headlamps with levelling device
* Variable intermittent windshield wiper and washers
* Black foldable and electronically controlled door mirrors
* Rear combi LED lamps with clear glass
* Colour-keyed rear bumper with rear fog lamp
* Roof Spoiler with High-mount stop lamp
* Tailgate intermittent wiper and washer


* All-round electric windows
* Central door locking with keyless entry
* Driver's and front passenger's SRS front airbags
* Side and curtain air bags
* 3-spoke leather wrapped steering wheel
* Leather wrapped shift knob
* Headlamp levelling device
* Odo and Twin trip and Rest driving range meter
* EV system check warning indicator
* Activation complete buzzer and indicator
* Batteryremaining indicator
* Dusk sensor
* Glove box with card holder
* Instrument panel secret box (above glove box)
* Front cup holders (floor console, front of the passenger)
* Electrical manual air conditioner with deodorant filter
* Front 2 speakers and Front 2 tweeters
* Seat belt warning (driver, front passenger)
* Front passenger air bag cut off switch
* ASC on/off switch

EV Functions:

* Brakeforce regeneration
* Lightweight electronic power steering
* On-board recharging system with cable (flat-to-full in 6-hours, 240V 13 A input)
* On-board rapid charging system (flat-to-80 in 30 minutes)
* Energy-saving drive mode (reduces output to 18kW)

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      Let's all crap on GM for making the Volt so expensive. Sheeesh.
      • 5 Years Ago
      UK cars cost more to produce, so it would probably be closer to the $40k price in Japan - especially if they used NA plants to produce it.

      One interesting thing in the article is that this vehicle (or type perhaps) can get $2300/yr in taxes removed. Were this car's price/cost reduced below £25k then the car pays for itself in about 6 years.

      ...and I predict the US government will add some national vehicle tax like this to replace the lost gas tax revenue.
      • 5 Years Ago
      wow. just wow. if the leaf comes in anywhere below this (and it should) it's gunna sell a lot better over there.
        • 5 Years Ago
        The Leaf will be built in the UK for European consumption and estimates are it'll run around £30K. But it won't be availble until mid-2012.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Define "substantially better" - and let's steer clear of that old American ethos of bigger being better.

        The i is extremely roomy for an A-segment city car, and perfect for large cities such as London. It rides well and handles superbly given its wheel-at-each-corner design. Its price has always been the negative point - but I'm sure Mitsubishi will want to try and make the electric version more competitive once the larger Leaf and Ampera hit the market.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Not quite accurate on the petrol powered i in the UK - it is not offered currently but it was offered in limited quantities one or two years ago for a price similar to the one quoted here for the Colt. So the electric one will be quite a jump up. For comparison the price quoted (before the government discount will get you a mid range BMW 5 series, so you really need to like you electricity to go with the i.
      • 5 Years Ago
      "Including the 17.5 percent value added tax, the i-MiEV will run British buyers a cool £33,699 before a £5,000 government subsidy. That equates to about $50,500 at current exchange rates, and even bearing in mind the UK's inflated auto prices, it still seems well above the pre-subsidy price in the low $40K range in Japan." - Autoblog

      Autoblog, $50K is the forex rate conversion, the amount at which it would cost an American buying one in Britain. In real terms using purchasing power parity, £33K weighs in at roughly $40K, perhaps very slightly more.

      Also bear in mind that from January 2011, electric car buyers in the UK will get a Government-funded plug-in car grant of 25% of the car's retail price up to a maximum of £5,000 directly at the point of purchase. This differs from the American model whereby buyers have to wait and claim a credit on their following year's tax income tax return.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Thanks for the PPP info, I appreciate it. I do feel that the Big Mac standard is a little bit over the hill now though, as the primary component in delivering (and thus purchasing) a Big Mac nowadays is local labor. While this isn't a huge factor in most big-ticket items, as so many of them are imported (many from the Orient). But do see how PPP is calculate now and how it matters in what you're trying to say.

        I think though that what AB is trying to do is not calculate whether the imiev is expensive for a Brit, but what it'll be priced when it makes it to the US. Will it be priced close to the Forex for the Japanese model or is Mitsu using their home market as a test market, not expecting to make money and will price it higher in other places. And I'm not sure their calculations even succeed at that.
        • 5 Years Ago
        "The article is pointing out it costs more in the UK than the Japan price. And they are correct. You're right about all the other stuff, but you're just making a different point than they are."

        If they're comparing the cost to an American buying one in Britain compared with buying one in Japan, yes they're correct. But using forex rates is no indication that the cost to a Briton is more than the cost to someone resident in Japan.

        "How do you calculate purchasing power parity? That seems like it'd be a useful thing to be able to do. I'd love if you could share how it is done so I can do it too."

        You have to determine an index - that index is based on a multitude of factors - standard of living, cost of living, average disposable incomes, costs as a percentage of income. If you set the US as an index of 100%, PPP calculates that index in other countries for the same incomes, goods, services etc and determines a percentage over or under the 100%. The average household income in the USA is roughly $50,000, while in the UK it is £35,000. A Big Mac meal in the US costs $5.50 (0.011% of the household income), in the UK £3.50 (0.010%). So if you used that alone as an index of 100 in the USA, in the UK the index would be 91 - the item is cheaper. Obviously there are many factors to consider, but generally most of western Europe are at 100 along with the US, while countries such as Spain, Portugal, Australia and Canada are in the 90s, with the Benelux between 100-110, and Norway and most of Scandinavia higher at 110-120.

      • 5 Years Ago
      Keep in mind that fuel is much more expensive and taxes much higher in the UK. And you have the benefit of exemption from the London congestion charge (though this is true for mainstream hybrid vehicles as well).
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