Mitsubishi has named the price at which it will sell its forthcoming i-MiEV electric car when it goes on general sale early next year. Customers will pay a steep £33,699 including VAT, even after the £5,000 per car grant that the government is introducing in order to encourage the sale of hybrid and electric plug-in cars.

The price contrasts with the mere £9,000 or so charged for the limited batch of petrol-powered versions of the same car that went on sale a couple of years ago, emphasising the high cost of batteries and electric car technology. However, running costs are expected to be far lower than for conventional models (£115 per 12,000 miles according to Mitsubishi), so owners should recoup much of the higher purchase price over the life of the car, depending on their pattern of use.

The i-MiEV is one of the more polished electric cars to make it to the market, and Motoring will be subjecting one to a full test next month.

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