Mitsubishi Motors Corp. intends to sell 2,000 units of its new i electric vehicle in North America by April, the company’s EV strategy leader disclosed. The i arrives at North American retailers in November.
Sales in North America of the i, which is known as i-MiEV in Europe and Japan, are expected to increase to 20,000 units each year by the Japanese fiscal year ending in March 2016, according to senior executive officer Yoshikazu Nakamura at Mitsubishi's EV business office.
He added that by then, the company will have released at least three electric or plug-in hybrid cars in the U.S., on top of the i. The first of these additional electric models is expected to be a plug-in hybrid variant of the company’s Outlander crossover, which is set to come to the U.S. by April 2013.
The EVs are part of the company’s plan to be an international leader on EVs by releasing eight plug-in or electric hybrid cars all over the world by 2016.
Nakamura disclosed that at this point, the U.S. market will not get all eight EVs, but at least four will be available for the dealers in the country.
Furthermore, he stated that the company’s strategy is to launch variants of the existing gasoline-powered vehicle units with plug-in or all-electric powertrains, instead of creating new nameplates from scratch, as Nissan did with its LEAF sedan. As an example, the i is an electric variant of a gasoline-powered compact car on sale in Japan.