Mitsubishi i-MiEV “vintage EV”- Australian electric car owner real world experience

The following is a discussion with Aussie electric vehicle (EV) owner Greg, who has a Mitsubishi i-MiEV.

If you attended Fully Charged Live Sydney 2023 you may have seen Greg’s i-MiEV on display in the Electric Alley area.

EDITOR: I’m going to publish a regular series of articles with the views of Australian EV owners about their purchase, driving, servicing, charging etc experience.

This will help fill an information gap as the majority of electric car news articles are about new car launches and there’s relatively little published about the longer term Australian ownership experience after you’ve paid for your electric car. Hopefully this shared information helps other Aussies make their own EV purchase decision. 

Was your electric car bought or leased?

Bought second hand.

Please describe your purchasing / lease process experience … Easy, Mediocre, Frustrating..?

Very straight forward. Cash sale

What has the regular servicing / dealership experience been like?

Never been to the dealership for a service. Only had to replace tyres, wipers etc.

How do you regularly charge your car for day to day usage?

  • plug in to standard PowerPoint at home (whenever it’s convenient for me)
  • plug into public DC charger faster than 22kW

What has your day to day normal charging experience been like?

Simple really. I plug it in at night and the charging fairy 🧚‍♀️ comes overnight and it is ready to go in the morning.

On long road trips I charge at a Chademo charger when needed.

How do you charge your car for longer road trips on the weekend or during holidays? Do you prefer any particular brand of public fast charger during road trips eg Evie, Tesla, Chargefox and why?

Evie, Ampol and the NRMA networks are the ones I use mostly.

What’s the farthest road trip you’ve done in your EV and what did you learn from this experience that would be useful for others to know?

My longest i-MiEV trip was 900 km.

Does your EV have any special features like V2L reverse charging from the car to your portable/home appliances? If yes please share your experience using this special feature

I have CHAdeMO which has the capability of V2H however I don’t have the need for it.

EDITOR: As mentioned at the bottom of this recent article CHAdeMO V2H/V2G is not possible in Australia at the moment and even when it was possible for a while it required the purchase of a very expensive $11,000 bi-directional charger unit for your house.

If you have roadside assist included with the car purchase/lease and have had to use it, which company provided the service and what was that experience like?

I have NRMA roadside assistance, and have used it once.

If you have had issues with your car and asked for these to be fixed under warranty, did the car brand do the right thing and fix it without causing you stress?

I have had issues with my onboard charger/inverter, however it is out of warranty.

What are the 3 strongest aspects of your electric car compared to other similar price electric cars available in Australia?

  • Price, due to age.
  • Upgraded battery pack that has a 220 km+ range.
  • It’s size. I don’t like big vehicles.

What are the 3 weakest aspects of your electric car compared to other similar price electric cars available in Australia?

  • Tyre size
  • Replacement parts
  • Lack of knowledge and support from Mitsubishi dealers.

Would you buy or lease this brand of electric car again and recommend it to others?

I am very happy with my i-MiEV, however there aren’t a lot of them in Australia, but they are a great stepping stone into EVs

Do you have any other comments about your electric car brand, experience etc?

Don’t buy an EV with a battery that has a range that you will never need. Cars can be charged to 80% very quickly. Larger battery packs just add cost and weight to an EV.

If you’re an Australian electric vehicle owner and would like to participate in this interview series by sharing your experience please contact me directly or add a comment below and let me know.


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