Mitsubishi iMiev price estimates

Sunday, February 15, 2009, 11:03 by Auto Correspondent

The Mitsubishi iMiev electric car is currently on display at the Canadian International Auto Show. We have been hearing about this car for more than an year, and it looks like a real car that would come to the markets in Europe, USA, Canada and possibly even India.

Mitsubishi iMiev photo - price questions

Mitsubishi iMiev photo - price questions

We have heard all kinds of price stimates for the iMiev. One of the first price estimates we came across was here on 12 July, 2008 US $ 37,496. They also go on to add that the Mitsubishi iMiev will be similar to the GM Chevrolet Volt in pricing, if that price tag holds. A couple of days later, another site reported that while that price is right, there is a tax relief in Japan for low emission cars, which could cut the price to $ 28,000.

News from the Canadian International Auto Show is that Mitsubishi officials are ‘hinting’ at a price of $ 25,000 – but that’s again for Japan, not Canada.

Local prices for the iMiev in Canada, United States and Europe will probably depend on the tax reliefs and subsidies offered for electric vehicle.

At least, the good thing is that we now haeve a pretty good idea about the iMiev. It is quiet, is a mini car, probably what you can call a monovolume design.

Like the Tesla Roadster or the electric sedan Model S, the Mitsubishi iMiev too comes with a lithium ion battery pack instead of conventional nickel-metal hydride batteries. The car has two drive modes – Drive and Eco. In Eco, you get a 160 km range, while in normal driving, it would be closer to 100 kilometers. 0-100 kmph comes up in 9 seconds approx.

What it lacks is a range extender like in the Chevrolet Volt. So if 100 kilometers of spirited driving is what you do, that’s what you get and nothing more. In the Volt, while you get 40 kilometers electric only drive, the gasoline engine makes matters easier by taking you as far as you want.

Our own estimate is that when the Mitsubishi iMiev finally enters production for the US and Canada, prices would be a lot cheaper. It would not make sense unless the price is substantially lower than that of the Chevy Volt for sure.