A white Mitsubishi i MiEV electric car plugged into an outdoor charging station.


Mitsubishi i-MiEV Electric Car

i-MiEV Electric Car

i-MiEV: A part of Mitsubishi EV history

On World Environment Day 2009, Mitsubishi Motors unveiled the i-MiEV (pronounced: 'EYE-meev'), a compact all-electric car that paved the way for the automotive industry's seismic shift towards mass-produced electric vehicles (EV).

A close up view of the logo of the Mitsubishi i MiEV electric car.

At the time of its release, the Mitsubishi i-MiEV represented the crystallization of some 40 years of electric vehicle development at Mitsubishi Motors. Designed as a solution to the various challenges the automobile industry faced (then and now), the i-MiEV addressed concerns around environmental pollution, global warming and the depletion of petroleum-based energy supplies.

A white Mitsubishi i MiEV electric car in a parking lot.

The i-MiEV has maintained a high profile not only for its environmentally-friendly credentials but also through its visibility in government use in many countries, as well as in taxi and rent-a-car fleets. In addition, the i-MiEV electric car has proven an important vehicle at times of disaster, when gasoline shortages hamper the use of cars with internal combustion engines.

A drawing of a Mitsubishi i Miev electric car in a city.
A blue Mitsubishi i MiEV electric car driving down a country road.

Electric vehicle technology that innovates

The result of five decades of research, Mitsubishi innovative Electric Vehicle (MiEV) technology is an integrated management system that constantly monitors and optimizes the flow of energy throughout the car. MiEV technology creates smooth and constant acceleration, distributes incoming energy from the regenerative brakes, and continually regulates the output from the i-MiEV's battery. Simply put: i-MiEV is an automatic co-pilot that ensures all systems are green.

A white Mitsubishi i MiEV electric car driving down a highway.

The 16-kilowatt battery and compact, rear-mounted electric motor ensures that the i-MiEV's driving range reaches up to 160 kilometers (99.4 miles) (NEDC2 Correlated/105 kilometers (66.2 miles)) (WLTP3) and offers excellent performance. The electric vehicle's compact dimensions are perfect for city driving, but intelligent interior design also resulted in a cabin with space for up to four people.

The introduction of the i-MiEV as Mitsubishi's first electric car also brought several innovative EV features to the market, including the use of advanced lithium ion battery packs and charging through CHAdeMO4 and Type1 connections. For over a decade, these innovations have fueled improvements to electric driving ranges, and the availability and accessibility of EV charging stations. As a result, electric vehicles have become more suitable for everyday use.

A drawing of a Mitsubishi i Miev electric car outside several buidlings.

The future of Mitsubishi electric vehicles

Amid rising demand for EVs, Mitsubishi Motors is working on the commercialization of V2H (Vehicle to Home) and V2G (Vehicle to Grid) to further develop and promote EVs and Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEV). Mitsubishi Motors regards this as one step towards pioneering a new age defined by an integrated relationship between the automobile and people, society and the environment.

Crucially, the i-MiEV also accelerated Mitsubishi Motors' research and development into EV powertrains, which led directly to the 2013 launch of the Outlander PHEV, an SUV with an innovative hybrid powertrain that combines both electric motors and a gasoline engine.

A side by side comparison of a white Mitsubishi i MiEV electric car and an Outlander PHEV.

While the Mitsubishi i-MiEV is discontinued in North America, it remains a positive fixture in the electric vehicle market across Europe and Asia. Mitsubishi Motors continues its extensive collaboration with both private and public sectors in Japan and overseas in developing infrastructure to promote ownership of EVs.