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Peugeot, Citroen EVs on sale in 2010, thanks to i-MiEV

Rebadged: The Mitsubishi i-MiEV is set to turn up in Europe under Peugeot and Citroen badges.

PSA to launch EV mini-cars late in 2010 based on Mitsubishi’s i-MiEV

7 Sep 2009

PSA Peugeot-Citroen signed an agreement with Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) in Paris last week which confirms that the Japanese manufacturer will provide both French brands with an electric vehicle (EV) based on the i-MiEV mini-car from late 2010.

Sparking speculation that a deeper alliance between PSA and MMC could soon emerge, the EV contract was first announced in March when a memorandum of understanding was signed to collaborate on a range of i-MiEV-based EVs.

The two companies said in a joint statement last week that both Peugeot and Citroen versions of the EV would be built, but restricted to sale in Europe at this stage. Production is due to commence in October 2010, with a commercial launch before the end of 2010.

MMC launched the i-MiEV in its domestic market in June and will begin global sales of right-hand drive versions in the final quarter, with Australia among the first recipients outside Japan. MMC will expand its international rollout to left-hook markets in its fiscal year 2010.

PSA said last week that the new EV would “further enrich its range of low-emission vehicles” as it strives to be “a step ahead in pioneering vehicles with low CO2 emissions”.

Selling rebadged versions of the i-MiEV will help the French group save on EV R&D costs, which have been channelled into other alternative drivetrains such as the diesel-electric HYbrid4, which will be shown at next week’s Frankfurt motor show in the near-production (2011) 3008 HYbrid4 and the RCZ HYbrid4 concept. Citroen’s DS5 will also be launched with HYbrid4 in 2011.

Overseas reports indicate that PSA intends to sell 25,000 i-MiEV-based EVs per annum.

MMC and PSA have other joint-venture programs in place, such as the Mitsubishi Outlander-based Peugeot 4007 and Citroen C-Crosser. The companies also plan to jointly manufacture cars in Russia.

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