South Australian government and Mitsubishi lock arms to tackle carbon
Mitsubishi Motors Corporation has signed a new deal with the South Australian government to help it reduce net emissions to zero by 2050 through electric vehicle fleet procurement.
As part of a range of initiatives the partnership promises to boost the SA government’s low-emission and electric vehicle fleet to 30 per cent with models such as the Mitsubishi i-MIEV and Outlander PHEV (Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle).
Mitsubishi Motors’ head office has been based in South Australia since 1980 when it acquired the Chrysler manufacturing facility in Tonsley Park, and will continue its alliance with the state government by supporting its stance on emissions reductions.
SA Premier Jay Weatherill met with MMC CEO Osamu Masuko recently to declare the joint venture and replace the outgoing fleet with EVs.
“At MMC, we support the government of South Australia’s target to move toward a low carbon economy and a greener future,” Mr Masuko said. “Mitsubishi Motors is a world leader in the development of advanced electric and plug-in hybrid automotive technologies, and we are ready to support the government’s move to greater efficiency through low emission vehicles like the Outlander PHEV.”
“We also support the government plans to increase the number of electric vehicle charging stations, which will encourage more SA drivers to ake the switch to EVs and PHEVs,” Mr Masuko added.
Premier Weatherill says EV procurement will have knock-on benefits for the Adelaideans and South Australians more broadly.
“The purchase of around 2000 low-emission vehicles will also help drive innovation, investment and jobs in this growing industry,” he said. “I am pleased to meet with Mr Masuko who shared to me Mitsubishi’s shared interests in our ambitions to address climate change.”
Mitsubishi brought the now discontinued i-MIEV electric vehicle to Australia in 2010 and the Outlander PHEV in 2014 as the world’s first plug-in hybrid SUV.
Mitsubishi’s Head of Corporate Communications Shayna Welsh said the small plug-in EV was a stepping stone for the Japanese automaker’s foray into EVs in the Australian market.
“The i-MIEV was an important model in terms of its technology and as a demonstration of the capability within Mitsubishi to produce electric vehicles,” Welsh said. “It was also an important step in Mitsubishi’s long-term EV strategy and paved the way for Outlander’s ground breaking PHEV system, however, the Outlander PHEV is a better fit for the Australian market and the PHEV system suits our driving habits here.”
While the numbers don’t even compare to the continued market glut for internal combustion vehicles, Welsh said sales of the $50k SUV are admirable.
“Since its launch, the Outlander PHEV has been well received in Australia and, with an average of about 50 units a month last year,” Welsh said. “It’s performed
above our expectations. This year we’re seeing a lot of business coming from corporates, councils and government organisations that are starting to recognise the value of this technology.”