The little Mitsubishi i-MiEV is the smallest four-seat electric car sold in North America, and its sales have been commensurate with its size: low.
Since it went on sale more than three years ago, sales have totaled less than 2,000 units--against 72,300 for the larger Nissan Leaf.
DON'T MISS: 2014 Mitsubishi i-MiEV: $6,130 Price Cut, More Standard Features (Dec 2013)
Nonetheless, the company is persevering with its battery-electric minicar, and deliveries of the 2016 Mitsubishi i-MiEV will start this month.
The news comes via a report at InsideEVs, which Green Car Reports independently confirmed with Mitsubishi's senior PR specialist Alex Fedorak.
[UPDATE: One week after this article was originally published on February 17, Mitsubishi issued a press release confirming that the 2016 i-MiEV would reach dealers this month.]
2014 Mitsubishi i-MiEV
Mitsubishi has now skipped two model years (2013 and 2015), meaning any new or used i-MiEVs in the U.S. will be from the 2012, 2014, or 2016 model years. (Canada got a handful of 2013 cars.)
The 2014 cars got a $6,000 price cut, along with CHAdeMO DC fast-charging fitted as standard equipment, but that didn't move the needle much on sales--only a few hundred 2014 models were sold.
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The company hasn't issued any details or specifications for the 2016 i-MiEV yet.
It did, however, tell InsideEVs that it would adjust the mix of options fitted to the car to suit buyer preferences better.
2014 Mitsubishi i-MiEV
The Mitsubishi i-MiEV was the first modern electric small car to go on the market, entering limited sales in Japan in 2008.
While Mitsubishi has made an aggressive commitment to plug-in electric car technology, the i-MiEV has been hugely outsold by the larger and longer-range Nissan Leaf.
MORE: 2012-2014 Mitsubishi i-MiEV Recall: Brake Pump Corrosion (Oct 2014)
The i-MiEV has only a 16-kilowatt-hour battery pack--just two-thirds the capacity of that in the Leaf--and its range of 62 miles is the lowest for any battery-electric car sold in the States.
Mitsubishi is likely to see better success with its Outlander Plug-In Hybrid; that plug-in SUV has been repeatedly delayed, but has sold well in both Asia and certain European countries.