Monday, July 5, 2010

Mitsubishi May Increase Battery Suppliers for Electric Cars

From BloombergBusinessweek

Mitsubishi May Increase Battery Suppliers for Electric Cars

July 05, 2010, 7:16 PM EDT

By Yumi Teso and Makiko Kitamura

July 5 (Bloomberg) -- Mitsubishi Motors Corp., maker of the i-MiEV electric car, is considering adding battery suppliers for electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles as the ratio of such cars to overall sales will rise, President Osamu Masuko said.

GS Yuasa Corp., the Kyoto, Japan-based company that provides lithium-ion batteries to Mitsubishi Motors, will remain the main supplier, Masuko told reporters in Bangkok today. Japan’s third-biggest automaker is holding talks and conducting research with several battery manufacturers, including Toshiba Corp., as it plans to boost the ratio of electric and plug-in hybrid cars to overall sales to 20 percent in 2020, he added.

Mitsubishi Motors, which will invest 15 billion baht ($462 million) in a new factory in Thailand, expects the ratio of exports from its Thai factory will increase to more than 70 percent in 2011 from the current 60 percent, Masuko said. The major export market will be Southeast Asian countries, he added.

Mitsubishi Motors is considering producing the global small car in Thailand, Masuko said. The new factory in Thailand will produce about 200,000 units a year, he added.

--Editors: Chris Staiti, Kenneth Wong

To contact the reporters on this story: Yumi Teso in Bangkok at; Makiko Kitamura in Tokyo at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Terje Langeland in Tokyo at


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