Mitsubishi begins production of three European-spec electric cars

Mitsubishi Motors has started to build the European version of the i-MiEV electric vehicle at its Mizushima plant in Japan, and also begun production of PSA Peugeot Citroën's Peugeot iOn and Citroën C-ZERO models.

The Japan-spec i-MiEV has been on sale since last year, but production of the European-spec models marks the start of a full export programme. Mitsubishi plans to sell 5,000 i-MiEVs overseas in the current financial year, including models built for PSA.

At a ceremony at the Mizushima Plant, Mitsubishi Motors Corp. president Osamu Masuko stated: "It has been 100 years since mass production of internal combustion-engine cars began. We have taken the first step into the next 100 years of the automobile with the i-MiEV. Today, we take the second step with production for the European market on the way to global rollout of electric vehicles. This is a big step for the automobile industry and at the same time signifies the beginning of e-mobility for Europe."

Mitsubishi plans to sell the i-MiEV in 14 European countries including France, the United Kingdom and Germany from this December, then from fiscal year 2011 sequentially expand the countries it will be sold in.

Compared to the Japanese version, the European-spec i-MiEV has been altered to better suit European requirements, including: a different front and rear bumper design, added safety features such as Active Stability Control (ASC), new gear selection and an all-new left-hand-drive dashboard.

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