Mitsubishi in massive EV recall

Mitsubishi Motors, in what looks to be one of the largest electric vehicle recalls ever, plans to bring 14,700 vehicles back to the shop in a worldwide move to fix a braking issue.

Though the number is small compared to traditional recalls, it is still significant for the developing green car automotive segment.

The recall, according to Reuters, focuses upon Mitsubishi’s i-MiEV as well as a cab style electric vehicle called the MiniCab-iMiEV.

The numbers of vehicles being recalled, which vary by region of the world, represent what is said to be “nearly half” of this particular EV’s total production numbers to date. Other plug-in vehicle manufacturers haven’t been immune to issues plaguing their cars, with Fisker Automotive and GM, via its Volt, issuing their own recalls last year for different issues.

This isn’t the first recall the i-MiEV has faced in its short life. Back in August, North American production models of this electric car were recalled due to a air bag sensor problem. At the time that recalled total around 310 units or so, and assuming sales of the i-MiEV haven’t grown significantly since then, it is reasonable to assume the newer recall, while likely impacting cars here as well, isn’t as big of an issue as it is in overseas markets.

The i-MiEV, which we reviewed back in October, is generally a quirky and somewhat affordable EV, though as Consumer Reports said recently, it is for the most part across the board not a very inspiring car. Introduced to the US in November of 2011, it holds a very tiny percentage of the electric car market domestically.

With regards to green vehicle recalls in general, this isn’t the largest to date. That ominous title goes to Toyota who, over the years, has issued recalls for a range of issues impacting hundreds of thousands of its hybrid models. As for the i-MiEV recall, there’s been no specific word from Mitsubishi yet on how the repairs will play out at its dealerships.

Nino Marchetti, EarthTechling