Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

CleanTechnica
Image courtesy of Tajima EV

Cars

Japanese Oil Company Plans $10,000 Micro EV

Idemitsu Kosan, a Japanese oil refiner, plans to sell a minuscule electric car at its 6,400 service stations beginning in 2022.

Different cultures embrace different kinds of vehicles. Americans, with their wide open spaces, prefer gargantuan vehicles with room for 7 and the ability to tow a camper with two kayaks, a paddleboard, 6 bicycles and a dirt bike up to the lake. Italians use the Piaggio Ape trike like it is an F-250 Super Duty. In China, the Wuling HongGuang Mini is selling like hotcakes. The point is, not every vehicle is suitable for drivers in every country.

Japan has always embraced tiny kei cars for use in its crowded cities. In fact, they account for about a third of all new car sales in Japan. By law, they can be no more than 3.4 meters long, 1.48 meters wide, and are limited to a 660 cc engine. If you think that is small, wait till you hear this. Idemitsu Kosan, a petroleum refiner in Japan, plans to launch an electric vehicle next year at its 6,400 petrol stations via a joint venture with private automaker Tajima Motor Corporation, according to a report by Reuters.

At 2.5 meters long and 1.3 meters wide, it will be about two-thirds the size of the already diminutive kei cars. The 4-seater will have a range of 120 kilometers and a maximum speed of 60 km/h. It is expected to start at $9,491 with a top price of $14,237. Obviously such a small, low performance car will have limited uses. The companies expect it will appeal to individuals and businesses who use cars for shopping and deliveries over short distances. The companies expect to unveil the car later this year and begin sales in 2022. The move comes as the company seeks new sources of revenue. Demand for gasoline is falling as Japan’s ageing population drives less and consumes less fuel.

Nobuhiro Tajima, Chairman / CEO of Tajima EV Corporation Co., Ltd.; Kiyoyuki Okuyama, CEO / Industrial Designer, KEN OKUYAMA DESIGN; Shunichi Kito, President / Representative Director, Idemitsu Kosan Co., Ltd. (Image courtesy Tajima EV)

“We believe there is about 1 million potential demand for ultracompact EVs as it is safer than bicycle or small motor bike and easier to drive than conventional minivehicle,” Idemitsu President Shunichi Kito told the press at a news conference this week. “We plan to offer various services including sharing and subscription of the EV at our 6,400 petrol stations,” he said.

Will the car be exported to the US? No. Will it be exported to any other countries? Highly doubtful. But it moves the EV revolution forward and for that we should be grateful.

Featured image courtesy of Tajima EV.

 
Appreciate CleanTechnica’s originality and cleantech news coverage? Consider becoming a CleanTechnica Member, Supporter, Technician, or Ambassador — or a patron on Patreon.
 

Don't want to miss a cleantech story? Sign up for daily news updates from CleanTechnica on email. Or follow us on Google News!
 

Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.
Advertisement
 
Written By

Steve writes about the interface between technology and sustainability from his home in Florida or anywhere else the Singularity may lead him. You can follow him on Twitter but not on any social media platforms run by evil overlords like Facebook.

Comments

#1 most loved electric vehicle, solar energy, and battery news & analysis site in the world.

 

Support our work today!

Power CleanTechnica: $3/Month

Tesla News Solar News EV News Data Reports

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Tesla News

EV Reviews

Home Efficiency

You May Also Like

Cars

Suzuki Motor Corporation and Daihatsu Motor Co., Ltd. are experts in making what is known in Japan as the “kei car.” The kei car...

Boats

Electric bikes, electric cars, electric vans, electric trucks — we keep electrifying bigger and bigger vehicles. Next on the plate are large ocean vessels...

Coal

Three Japanese energy companies announced last week that they have decided to scrap plans to build a 2 gigawatt (GW) coal-fired power station in...

Clean Transport

While I remain extremely skeptical of the idea of personal hydrogen fuel cell cars, it seems that authorities and companies in Japan are not....

Copyright © 2021 CleanTechnica. The content produced by this site is for entertainment purposes only. Opinions and comments published on this site may not be sanctioned by and do not necessarily represent the views of CleanTechnica, its owners, sponsors, affiliates, or subsidiaries.