The vehicles’ arrival into the Port of Brisbane was witnessed by Queensland’s Minister for Climate Change and Sustainability, the honourable Kate Jones. Mrs Jones also presided over their first official Australian inspection, together with customs, shipping and port authorities.
The two vehicles are the first two full-production electric cars to arrive to Australia. They were brought Down Under for the official pre-sale evaluation program. In the next months, these vehicles will be tested in ‘real world’ situations by government fleets, private fleets and media across the continent.
“The Mitsubishi i-MiEV has the ability to introduce a new era of environmentally sound motoring to Australia. The arrival of these vehicles brings the possibility of having large numbers of zero drive-time emission vehicles on our roads one step closer to reality,” said MMAL’s president and CEO, Robert McEniry, who was delighted to welcome the globally acclaimed vehicles to Australian shores.
Mitsubishi is one of the first automakers to sell EVs. Mitsubishi’s little electric vehicle has been on sale in Japan since July 2009 and was very well received by the customers. By the end of 2010 i-MiEV will hit the European market, together with a charging system compatible with European 220/240V outlets. In this layout, a full charge from scratch should take about seven hours.
The i-MiEV will also be sold in the United States of America as a Mitsubishi model. The price is believed to be around $40,000 before tax but, according to Japanese officials, in a few years it should go down 50%.