Mitsubishi Motors Thailand (MMTh) recently signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Eternity Grand Logistics, a logistics company of the Hitachi Transport System Group, to conduct a pilot study on the commercial viability of compact electric vehicles in Thailand.

Under the MoU, MMTh will provide one unit of the Mitsubishi Minicab MiEV for the study, and Eternity will use the vehicle for one year in its operations. The study aims to understand and explore EV commercial applications, verifying actual usage data including mileage, charging history and delivery routes.

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

The Mitsubishi i-MiEV was the first EV registered in Malaysia back in 2011

The Minicab MiEV isn’t a new electric car. While everyone is talking and making EVs these days, Mitsubishi was quite a pioneer in the field a decade ago, along with Nissan. For those who remember, the i-MiEV – the passenger car sister of this Minicab MiEV – went on sale in 2009, and was the first EV to be registered in Malaysia in 2011, before hitting local showrooms two years later in 2013.

So, why is the Minicab MiEV suddenly appearing in the news 10 years after its domestic launch? MMC says that it plans to improve the tried and tested Minicab MiEV through “more experiments abroad”, and we know that Thai conditions are significantly different from the home ground of this “electric Proton Juara”. Like the i-MiEV, it runs on a 16.0 kWh lithium-ion battery and has a claimed electric range of 150 km.

Recap the cute Mitsubishi i-MiEV here.