Size doesn’t matter – at least, not when it comes to beauty and charm. The mia, a microvan produced in France, is the embodiment of practical and cute wrapped up in a tiny package.
How Much Car Is Enough?
The mia rolls off the line in Cerizay on 14” electric wheels, to the tune of 61” of height, 65” of width, and (depending on the model) either 113” or 126” of length. It weighs just 1,675 lbs. and if you’re in Europe, you can buy it for 23,500 euros (Google says that’s about $31,000 USD today).
The mia isn’t just tiny and cute. As long-term Gas2 readers may remember, the prototype at the Frankfurt Auto Show was purely electrically driven. Of course, all production mias are also 100% battery electric and zero emission.
Mia designer Murat Guenak, head of corporate strategy for mia electric, developed a love of cars that aren’t powered solely by gasoline throughout his career. The question that he asked himself when designing the mia was incredibly simple:
“We kept coming back to the same question. What does a person really need to be mobile in an urban environment?”
Guenak seems to think city dwellers will do well with a range of about 81 miles packed into a frame small enough to fit into nearly any parking space. He also offers the mia L and the mia K, just in case a little more cargo room is in order. Either way, the little mia is definitely more than adequate for most people’s daily needs.
Reduce, Re-use, Recycle
Then there’s the question of materials. Mobility, like so many other things, is inextricably linked to the availability of resources. Edwin Kohl, pharmaceutical entrepreneur and founder of mia electric SAS, is staking his future on the combination of renewable energy and electric cars (as we’ve said before, this is perhaps the greenest and therefore most awesome possible combination). The mia takes eco-friendliness one step farther, according to Kohl:
“I treasure the thoughtful concept of the mia. It’s easily built, constructed like an airplane. We not only use recycled and recyclable sheet metal, but the plastic can be recycled as well.”
Kohl trusts in the talent available in Cerizay as well – the production company Heuliez, which assembles the mia, has 20 years of experience in building electric cars for Peugeot and Citroen.
Whether or not the mia will be able to slip into the hearts of European drivers remains to be seen, but the German distribution company, Smiles AG, has decided that it most definitely will; they’ve set a sales goal of 500 units this year, with the first cars going on sale within this quarter. My question is when do we get an American release?
Questions? Opinions? Let us know in the comments, below.
Source | Image: Oekonews.at.