Automotive

Published on July 22nd, 2021 | by Subhash Nair

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Mitsubishi Motors Thailand Testing Small EV Van Viability

Mitsubishi Motors is seeing if the Minicab MiEV will be viable in Thailand.

The era of electrified mobility is upon us, even in South East Asia, where the infrastructure has yet to be set up. No company wants to be the last to the game, but very few have the resources to fully commit either.

To test the waters of one particular segment of electrified vehicles in Thailand, Mitsubishi Motors have teamed up with a local partner. They’re going to do a pilot study to see if compact Electric Vehicles have a future in the commercial sector. They’re doing this study with local partner “Eternity Grand Logistics”.

Strangely though, the pilot program seems very very low scale. Only one unit of the Japanese Domestic Market Mitsubishi Minicab MiEV will be provided to the logistic company to run.

The Minicab MiEV has been running around in Japan for a decade now and is loosely related to the MiEV that was once available in Malaysia.

Here’s the press release with more information.

PRESS RELEASE

Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) announced that Mitsubishi Motors Thailand Co., Ltd. (MMTh), MMC’s subsidiary in Thailand, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on June 9 with Eternity Grand Logistics Public Co., Ltd. (Eternity), a logistics company of the Hitachi Transport System Group, to conduct a pilot study on commercial viability of compact electric vehicles (EV) in Thailand. 

Under the terms of the MoU, MMTh will provide one unit of the Mitsubishi Minicab MiEV, a compact commercial EV that is now sold in Japan, for the study, and Eternity will use the vehicle for one year in its logistics operations. The study aims to understand and explore EV commercial applications verifying actual usage data including mileage, charging history and delivery route.  

“This study will enable us to explore opportunities to apply EVs for commercial applications,” said Eiichi Koito, president and CEO of MMTh.

“It is a part of our New Environmental Plan Package, and is contributing to the Thai government’s electrification initiative. Through this study, we will explore ways to form an environment for EVs.”  

Ryuichi Honda, CEO of Asia Region of Hitachi Transport System (HQ) and chairman of Eternity, said, “As one of the leading players in the logistics industry, we have a responsibility to reduce our carbon footprint while also cutting operational expenses. We are proud to be partnering with one of the leading automotive companies, Mitsubishi Motors, who has the advanced technology and capability to produce high-tech EVs. This study will allow us to understand and obtain more information on the potential introduction of EVs into our operations. It is in-line with our aim to become a responsible corporate citizen at the forefront of industrial and environmental sustainability.”  

MMC plans to improve the Minicab-MiEV, which has established a track record and credibility for 10 years since its launch in Japan, through more experiments abroad, thereby contributing to building an eco-conscious society together with companies in various industries.

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Written work on dsf.my. @subhashtag on instagram. Autophiles Malaysia on Youtube.



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