Access to electric car technology is one of the driving forces behind PSA’s potential tie-up with Mitsubishi, Autocar has learned.
Mitsubishi Motor’s shareholder Mitsubishi Corporation has a controlling interest in one of Japan’s leading battery manufacturers, Lithium Energy Japan, which supplies the battery pack for Mitsubishi’s i-MIEV and the Peugeot-Citroen variants on sale in the UK next year.
Getting further access to this technology would speed-up the rate at which PSA could close the gap on French rivals Renault, whose EV plans are well-advanced, largely thanks to Japanese partner Nissan and its lithium-ion battery tech.
Today PSA confirmed that it has “started discussions with Mitsubishi Motors Company concerning the possibility of extending their relationship which could lead to a strategic partnership".
Reports from Japan suggest that PSA could take between a 30 and 50 per cent stake in Mitsubishi Motors, which would cost it between £1 billion and £1.6bn. In return Mitsubishi may take a stake in PSA.