• Jul 6, 2011
Mitsubishi Motors has announced the launch of two revised versions of its electric i-MiEV for 2012, slashing the price on one and extending the range on the other to appeal to a wider swath of potential buyers of zero-emissions vehicles.

One of the revised 2012 i-MiEVs, dubbed the M, boasts a sticker price of 2.60 million yen ($32,084 U.S. at the current exchange rate), down from 2011 i-MiEV's price of 3.98 million yen ($49,113 U.S.). The bargain-priced M has a range of 120 kilometers (75 miles), compared to the 2011 i-MiEV's range of 160 km (100 miles). After subsidies, the M will cost 1.88 million yen ($23,199 U.S.) in Japan.

Stepping up to the extended-range G version of the electric-only 2012 i-MiEV means that drivers can go up to 180 km (110 miles) on a full charge. That additional range comes at a cost, with Mitsubishi pricing the G at 3.8 million yen ($46,892 U.S.). Despite the 3.8 million yen price tag, the up-level G is still slightly less expensive than the outgoing 2011 i-MiEV.

Mitsubishi president, Osamu Masuko, indicates that – as we've all been expecting over the last several years – a dramatic reduction in the cost of batteries is the main reason for the massive price reduction. In fact, Masuko claims the cost of the iMiEV's battery has literally been halved since its introduction. That's a trend that is likely to continue.

The M version will hit showrooms in Japan on July 25, with the G variant scheduled to arrive by mid-August. For more on the M and G, check out Mitsubishi's detailed press release after the jump.

[Source: Mitsubishi]
Show full PR text
Mitsubishi Motors introduces major improvements to i-MiEV new-generation EV

- Now available in two trim levels: Easily affordable "M" and Highly capable "G" -
Tokyo, July 6, 2011 - Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) announced today that it is to offer the i-MiEV new-generation electric vehicle in two trim levels. The entry-level "M" will be available at the readily affordable price of \1,880,000 after receipt of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry's eco-car subsidy. The higher-level "G" will sport a more comprehensive equipment and trim specification with extended cruising range per charge and the "MiEV Remote System" that allows the owner to set the time he wants battery charging to start and finish and to pre-activate the climate control system before entering the car. The M model will debut in Mitsubishi dealer showrooms throughout Japan on July 25 and the G model in the middle of August carrying a price tag ranging from \2,600,000 to \3,800,000 consumption tax inclusive.

When MMC first started delivering the i-MiEV ultimate eco-car to corporate, governmental and local authority users in July 2009, it was the first auto manufacturer to offer a car that fully addresses the issues facing the automobile today and including environmental pollution, global warming and exhaustion of petroleum-based energy supplies. To promote EV ownership on Japan's roads, the company started sales of i-MiEV to individual customers in April 2010, reducing the ex-subsidy price from \4,599,000 to \3,980,000. Since then the company has sold around 4,000 units in Japan and has exported a total of over 10,000 units including those supplied to PSA Peugeot Citroen.

Reflecting the views and wishes of customers over two years of sales who were calling for a longer cruising range and lower price, the major change seen in the new i-MiEV is the introduction of two trim levels to give the customer a choice. In addition, basic vehicle performance and the equipment specification have been upgraded to realize a significant improvement in product content. The cruising range per charge has been extended by linking brake pedal usage to the regenerative braking system while Active Stability Control (ASC) is now fitted as standard. The "MiEV Remote System" factory-fitted option gives the owner the convenience of using late-night and other off-peak electricity to charge the battery.

i-MiEV 「M」

i-MiEV 「G」

In addition to the promotion of solar and wind power and other renewable energy sources and the near-future realization of the smart grid, much attention is also being focused on the power storage capability of high capacity EV batteries as a power source for use in major disasters and other emergencies. Today more and more people are looking to the EV both as a means to address environmental issues and also to address the pressures on the demand and supply of energy. To meet these expectations, MMC is pushing forward research and development into related technologies. The company currently offers, as a dealer-fitted option, the AC Power Supply EZ adaptor that allows i-MiEV's batteries to be used to power domestic electrical appliances up to a rating of 100W. And the company is aiming to bring to market during fiscal 2011 an adaptor that will enable i-MiEV's batteries to power domestic appliances up to a total rating of 1500W.

1. Trim levels
(1) Entry-level M

The newly offered M trim level is targeted as an entry-level model for a wide spectrum of drivers including minicar owners. The use of a 10.5 kWh drive battery and the careful tailoring of the equipment and trim specification have made it possible to offer M at a much more accessible price. (The actual price to the customer after receipt of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry's eco-car subsidy will be \1,880,000.)
The M model delivers ample performance for everyday minicar use, such as running errands like local shopping and running children to school and back. (JC08-cycle range per charge: 120 km.)

(2) Higher-level G

Inheriting the original i-MiEV's specification, the G is offered as a higher capable trim level and targets customers with a keen interest in environmental issues and in advanced technologies. Product content has been significantly raised with the use of LED headlamps and rear combination lamps, 15-inch alloy road wheels, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter knob and other high-grade equipment. G also features a navigation system and heated seats (driver and front passenger) as standard and offers all this at a price lower than that of the original i-MiEV. (The actual price to the customer after receipt of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry's eco-car subsidy will be \2,840,000.)
Using the same 16.0 kWh battery as the original i-MiEV, G now realizes around 20 percent* increase in its single charge range (J08-cycle range of 180 km). Together with the expansion of charging facilities at expressway service stations and rest areas, this gives it fully practical day-trip capability. (*JC08-cycle comparison.)
Factory-fitted options available for the G model (on cars built in October onward) include a Premium Interior Package that further enhances the classy look and feel of the interior, and the "MiEV Remote System" that features "Timer Charging" and "Pre-activated Air Conditioning" which allows the owner to start up the climate control system before entering the car.

Specification comparison

Trim level

M

G
Vehicle weight

1070 kg

1110 kg
Performance
(Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism figures)

AC consumption (JC08-cycle)

110 Wh/km
Range/charge
(JC08-cycle)

120 km

180 km
Motor

Type

Permanent magnet synchronous
Model

Y4F1
Max. output

30kW [41PS]
/ 2000~6000rpm

47kW [64PS]
/ 3000~6000rpm
Max. torque

180N・m[18.4kgf・m]
/ 0~1000rpm

180N・m[18.4kgf・m]
/ 0~2000rpm
Traction battery

Type

Lithium-ion
Rated voltage

270V

330V
Rated capacity

10.5kWh

16.0kWh
Battery charging time

AC 200V
(15Amp)

Approx. 4.5 hrs (full charge)

Approx. 7 hrs (full charge)
AC 100V
(10Amp)* 2

Approx. 14 hrs (full charge)

Approx. 21 hrs (full charge)
Quick charge *3

Approx. 15 min (80%)

Approx. 30 min (80%)
*2: The AC 100V charging cable is a factory-fitted option.
*3: The Quick Charge Connector is standard on G and a factory-fitted option on M.

2. Principal changes over the original i-MiEV
(1) Better performance

Improvements to the MiEV OS (MiEV Operating System) integrated vehicle management system mean that both trim levels now employ a more effective regenerative braking system which increases the energy recovery bias when the driver operates the brake pedal. This results in more deceleration energy being recovered and increases the single charge cruising range by about 20 percent.

(2) Upgraded safety specification

Both trim levels are fitted as standard with Active Stability Control (ASC). This system promotes more stable driving by helping to prevent changes in vehicle attitude and loss of traction caused by slippery road surfaces or sudden steering inputs.
Both trim levels are fitted with larger door mirrors to give improved rearward visibility.

(3) Improved equipment specification

The G model is fitted with heated driver and front passenger seats as standard.
The Mitsubishi Multi-entertainment System (MMES: 7-inch display, solid state drive, navigation system) that was a factory-fitted option is now standard equipment on the G model. It is available on the M model as a factory-fitted option.
A new hard disk drive navigation system specifically designed for EV's is available as a dealer option. EV-exclusive features of the system include: Battery charging facility location search; Maximum economy route search; and Running economy status.

[The following two factory-fitted options will be available on cars built in October onward]

MiEV Remote System. Exclusive to the G model, this factory-fitted system allows the driver to operate the following systems from outside the car if the regular charging cable is plugged in:
a. Timer Charging: This allows the driver to set the time he wants battery charging to start and finish with convenience of using late-night and other off-peak electlicity to charge the battery.
b. Pre-activated Air Conditioning: This allows the driver to use power supplied through the normal charging cable to operate the car heating, air cooler and defroster and create a comfortable interior environment before he starts his journey.
c. Energy level gauge: The current battery charge status is displayed on the MiEV Remote.
Premium Interior Package. Exclusive to the G model, this factory-fitted package gives the
interior an elegant and composed ambience. The top of the dashboard, the door trim and the seat fabric use a dark brown treatment which blends tastefully with the exclusive matt black-finish center panel. The instrument dials and door handles feature silver accents. The dashboard uses a soft-look paint and with the exclusive door trim fabric creates a classy effect that is appealing both to the eye and to the touch.

(4) Use of Green Plastic*5

Both trim levels use a new seat upholstery fabric made from a mixture of PET (polyethelene terephthalate) resin and cotton. The result is a reduction of around 20 percent in carbon dioxide emissions over the full lifecycle (from raw material extraction to scrapping) of the vehicle compared with 100 percent PET upholstery. (*5 MMC's generic term for plant-based material technology.)

(5) Other features

For regular battery charging, both trim levels are fitted as standard with a special AC 200V cable (15Amp) which now features a control box that allows the charge status to be monitored. (This cable connects to an exterior socket made by Panasonic Electric Works Co., Ltd. and specially designed for EV charging use.) An AC 100V cable (10Amp) is available as a factory-fitted option.
The two trim levels are offered in a total of seven body colors. The original Raspberry Red Pearl, Mystic Violet Pearl and Cool Silver Metallic/Black Mica colors have been discontinued.
a. Monotone colors: White Solid, Cool silver Metallic, Black Mica.
b. Two-tone Type A (additional cost): Red Solid/White Solid, Cool Silver Metallic/White Solid.
c. Two-tone Type B (additional cost): White Pearl/Mint Green Solid, White Pearl/Ocean Blue Metallic.
Both trim levels are available with the dealer option AC Power Supply EZ adaptor which supplies AC 100V power from the interior accessory socket. (This can also be used to power domestic appliances up to a total rating of 100W.) The adaptor exploits the advantages of the EV and allows i-MiEV to be used to power electrical appliances without the generation any exhaust gases.


3. Sales information

Sales target: 6,000 units (fiscal 2011)
Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP)*7

Trim level

Price of vehicle (incl. consumption tax)
M

\2,600,000
G

\3,800,000
N.B. Prices are exclusive of recycling surcharge, insurance, taxes *8 (but inclusive of consumption tax) and registration costs.
*7: i-MiEV qualifies for "Subsidies for measures designed to promote introduction of clean energy vehicles," currently implemented by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. For fiscal 2011, intending owners are eligible to receive a maximum subsidy of JPY 720,000 for the M trim level (JPY 740,000 when equipped with the factory-fitted Quick Charger) and of JPY 960,000 for the G trim level on approval of an application submitted to the Next Generation Vehicle Promotion Center.
*8: Under current Japanese tax incentives to promote the ownership of eco-cars, i-MiEV is exempt from vehicle acquisition tax and vehicle weight tax normally collectable on purchase of a new vehicle.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 11 Comments
      Nick From Montreal
      • 3 Years Ago
      Mitsubishi should just focus on filling the the current demand for pure EVs instead of building variants. The cars are just not available in high enough volume right now and that's a problem. More cars please. Goes to show that being first doesn't always mean anything.
        Dan Frederiksen
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Nick From Montreal
        Nick, I'm not sure there is a shortage of iMievs. when we got them here in Denmark a few months ago they had a couple at local dealerships here in a 150k city that you could buy and take home. no apparent waiting list from day one. it is a small and very expensive EV so that's to be expected. Volt and Leaf however seem to be in very short supply. I for one approve of pack variants. I'd like to see more variants. like super high performance versions with different chemistry and more powerful electronics. electric drive is fairly easy to make quick which can be a strong selling point. I think the imiev can be made into a 5-6 second car with ease. maybe even without a bigger motor. nissan leaf seems to be able to do it in around 7 seconds despite its fat ass. imagine that if it only weighed 800kg. that's tesla roadster quick.
        porosavuporo
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Nick From Montreal
        Read the press release. 4K units in japan, plus 10K worldwide. Not enough volume for a first generation product ?
        Marco Polo
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Nick From Montreal
        Which model iMev did you buy?
      • 3 Years Ago
      What time-frame and context does he really mean "the cost of the iMiEV's battery has literally been halved since its introduction. That's a trend that is likely to continue." Is that really true? Also: Does anyone know of a freeware program where you can compare cost break-even times for a BEV and comparable ICE; using the battery depreciation, projected prices for gas and other appropriate variables?
      • 3 Years Ago
      That's one heck of a price difference for a slightly larger pack. Assuming the 75 mile range version uses the 10kwh pack as the MiniCab does, and the 110 mile range the 16kwh pack, then that is $2,333kwh for the upgrade. What is going on?
        • 3 Years Ago
        I forgot to check the full press release before posting. It appears that there are also a few fancier trims on the longer range vehicle, but even so.... The range estimates are also based on the vastly optimistic Japanese cycle, so the realistic range of the lower spec version may be around 40 miles instead of 75 miles. Pretty dire.
      porosavuporo
      • 3 Years Ago
      again, ABG somehow misses the news here : the i-MiEV has shipped more than 10K units, worldwide, to date.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Good luck but it needs to be about 8 to 10k less expensive than the Leaf as it is a much smaller car.
      Doug
      • 3 Years Ago
      I suppose it's a consequence of GM marketing, but I had assumed from the title of this blog post that the i-MiEV "G" had a gasoline fueled ICE generator. That said, one who normally blogs about green cars should know better than to use the hyphenated term "extended-range" (which fortunately does not show up in the press release) in this context.
      Dan Frederiksen
      • 3 Years Ago
      let's see what the price will be internationally