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Thursday, November 24, 2011

Mitsubishi to Launch MINICAB-MiEV Commercial Electric Vehicle in Japan

Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) announced that it will launch the new MINICAB-MiEV*1 minicar-class commercial electric vehicle (EV)-the second product in its next-generation EV lineup-on December 8, 2011 at dealerships throughout Japan. Depending on specification the new model will carry a pre-incentive manufacturer's recommended retail price (MSRP) of between ¥2,400,000 and ¥2,971,000,(US$31,131 to US$38,538) consumption tax included.
*1: Mitsubishi innovative Electric Vehicle

Derived from the MINICAB Van minicar-class commercial vehicle, the MINICAB-MiEV has been developed maximizing the technologies and knowhow gained from the development of the i-MiEV in delivering the superior environmental performance inherent to an EV, together with the high levels of operating economy, payload capacity, drivability and reliability demanded of a commercial vehicle.

The MINICAB-MiEV will come with a choice of two sizes of drive battery to allow the customer to choose the cruising range best suited to his or her needs. The CD 10.5 kWh battery version provides a cruising range of 100 km (at JC08 mode) on a single charge, while the CD 16.0 kWh version takes this up to 150 km. MMC has set prices at an accessible level: with the application of the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry's eco-car subsidy, the final cost to the consumer for the CD 10.6 kWh and CD 16.0 kWh battery versions will be reduced to ¥1,730,000 and ¥2,020,000 respectively. As with the i-MiEV, the MINICAB-MiEV will be sold on a maintenance lease, credit or cash basis.

When MMC started sales of the i-MiEV new-generation EV in the Japanese market in July 2009 it was the first auto manufacturer to offer a truly "ultimate eco-car" that fully addresses issues facing our society today including environmental pollution, global warming and exhaustion of petroleum-based energy supplies. Since then MMC has sold some 5,000 units in Japan and has shipped a total of about 17,000 units (as of October 31, 2011), including units supplied to PSA Peugeot Citroën. As a leading manufacturer of EVs, MMC is confident that as it expands its lineup of EV models it will serve as pioneers on the path toward quickly making possible a low-carbon society.

1. MINICAB-MiEV Product Features

The new MINICAB-MiEV is derived from the CD model in the MINICAB series of minicar-class commercial vehicles. Powered by the same drive battery and motor drivetrain already well proven in the i-MiEV, the new model offers payload capacity on a par with the MINICAB CD, as well as a cruising range that is ample for the requirements of a minicar-class commercial vehicle. The new MINICAB-MiEV also provides outstanding operating economy at an accessible price. MINICAB-MiEV provides a level of all-round performance that is well above that of conventional minicar-class commercial vehicles as its electric motor drivetrain delivers superior environmental performance and outstanding power and its whisper-quiet driving make for a pleasant and comfortable operating environment.

1) Environmental performance

The MINICAB-MiEV is a "zero-emissions vehicle" (zero drive-time emissions) and so is the ideal type of vehicle for transporting foodstuffs, fresh flowers and other sensitive cargo, or for delivery/collection work in areas normally inaccessible to a gasoline-powered vehicle (within facilities, in an environmentally protected area, etc.).

2) Economy

Being derived from the low cost/high performance MINICAB Van and employing most of the same major EV components as the i-MiEV allows Mitsubishi Motors to sell the MINICAB-MiEV at an accessible price. In addition, with the application of the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry's "Subsidies for measures designed to promote introduction of clean energy vehicles," the CD 10.5 kWh version comes with an attractive price tag starting at \1,730,000.
Commercial vehicles are usually owned longer and cover longer cumulative mileages than family cars; so the MINICAB-MiEV also offers possible advantages over a comparable gasoline-powered in terms of total operating cost, including the price of the vehicle, because the main running cost is just that of the comparatively inexpensive electricity used to charge its battery. Further, because the MINICAB-MiEV can be charged at the business or at home it eliminates the need to make separate journeys to gasoline stations.

3) Payload capacity

The MINICAB-MiEV sports the same outstanding packaging as the i-MiEV where the high-capacity drive battery is located under the floor and the motor, inverter and other EV components are located under the cargo compartment. The result is cargo compartment space and payload capacity (350 kg with two occupants) which are on a par with the MINICAB CD, therefore delivering the high levels of utility required in a commercial vehicle.

4) Driving performance

The MINICAB-MiEV leverages the electric motor's inherent characteristic of generating maximum torque as soon as the vehicle starts to move off to enable stress-free gutsy performance even when fully-loaded.

In addition, because of the EV's inherently quiet operation, the MINICAB-MiEV makes the ideal commercial vehicle for delivery work early in the morning or late at night in residential districts. The lack of vibration also makes it well suited to transporting delicate goods. The stress-free and very quiet performance are complemented further by excellent ride comfort and all this helps to reduce fatigue in full-time drivers who are behind the wheel for many hours a day.

5) Reliability

The MINICAB-MiEV uses the same drive battery, motor and other major components that have been well-proven in the i-MiEV and also shares the advanced MiEV OS integrated vehicle management system. Constantly monitoring the charge remaining in the battery while at the same time regulating the regenerative braking system, the MiEV OS operates to ensure smooth and powerful off-the-line performance. The system contributes to pleasant, safe and reassuring vehicle operation while optimizing and saving energy use.

2. Product Overview (Main changes over MINICAB CD base model)
  • MINICAB-MiEV specifications (2-seater with high-roof model)
Trim level
CD 10.5 kWh
CD 16.0 kW
2WD (rear wheel drive)
Vehicle weight *3
1090 kg
1110 kg
Interior dimensions *4
1825 (935) mm x 1370 (1360) mm x 1230 mm *5
Maximum payload *4
350 (200) kg
(JC08 mode)
AC power consumption
125 Wh/km
Range per charge
100 km
150 km
Permanent magnet synchronous
Max. output
30 kW (41PS) / 2500-6000 rpm
Max. torque
196 Nm (20kgf-m) / 0-3000 rpm
Rated capacity
10.5 kWh
16.0 kWh
Drive battery
Total voltage
270 V
330 V
Rated capacity
10.5 kWh
16.0 kWh
Charging time
(from empty)
200V AC(15Amp)
Approx. 4.5 hours
 (full charge)
Approx. 7 hours
(full charge)
100V AC(15Amp) *6
Approx.14 hours
 (full charge)
Approx. 21 hours
(full charge)
Quick-charger: 200V 3-phase (50 kW) *6
Approx. 15 min
 (80% charge)
Approx. 35 min
 (80% charge)
*3:Add 10 kg for 4-seater model
*4:Figures in parentheses indicate dimensions for 4-seater model (with just 2 occupants, dimensions are same as for 2-seater model)
*5:Standard roof model cargo compartment height is 1125 mm.
*6:100V AC charging cable and quick charging cable are factory options.

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