new guy here & Q re: Japanese import i-Miev

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ul9601
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new guy here & Q re: Japanese import i-Miev

Post by ul9601 »

Hi people,
I'm considering direct importing one from Japan, as there are hardly any around here in NZ and the ones here are mostly older of HA3W.
I'm currently doing the research but the number 1 question I have is whether ex-Japan cars have any issue with onboard charger handling local 240VAC.
Cheers
Sam

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Re: new guy here & Q re: Japanese import i-Miev

Post by mikedufty »

I would guess that it is not a problem, at least not any more problem than with the Australian delivered ones, as people have been importing the minicab i-miev to Australia, but you probably want more than a guess. You may get the best info from the http://myimiev.com/forum/
I recall reading something about it in the huge thread there on charger failures.

If you go searching you will find quite a few people have had failures of chargers with official imports, and getting a japanese one probably won't avoid that.

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Re: new guy here & Q re: Japanese import i-Miev

Post by ul9601 »

Hi Mike,
I found the myimiev forum a weeks ago and found it quite helpful.
However, it appears that it is more of US/UK/EU orientated forum with a limited grey import experience, which made me look at this forum.
I'd imagine minicab and i car would be more or less the same, people have no charging issues with minicab, it would be "probably" ok with i car also.
Also, we have second hand car dealers importing and selling them from Japan here and I'd hazard a guess that they wouldn't do it if it required modification, as I don't think it's worth the hassle given the lack of demand for them.
As for charger failure, it reads like it's a wide spread issue regardless of grey import or locally sold cars, but I do need to do more reading.
There was a thread on UK based EV forum, some guy imported 2010 pre J1772 and had trouble charging then promptly on-sold it, which was 6 months ago ish. No details whether he got it sorted - Don't you just hate it when people come to a forum, ask questions and just disappear without telling you how it was resolved (or not)
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Sam
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Re: new guy here & Q re: Japanese import i-Miev

Post by mikedufty »

The early models (2010) in Australia had a J1772 plug, but with two pins missing and no EVSE box on the charging cord? Is that what you are talking about? Those ones will charge with the supplied cord, but not from public J1772 chargers, or other cords with EVSE. A lot were modified to work with other chargers. There are details in this forum somewhere. Mine had the mod done, but to be honest it would have been fine without it, they are great cars for daily driving within a single charge's range of home, but not really worth the trouble if going far enough that you need a charge on the way, and you can always bring your own cord if you do need a slow charge. Of course if you buy one from Japan, the cord that comes with it won't work in NZ so that could be a problem.

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Re: new guy here & Q re: Japanese import i-Miev

Post by ul9601 »

Actually I was referring the input voltage to the onboard charger, as Japanese household mains voltage is 100VAC for slow charging and 200VAC for semi-fast charging (+ CHAdeMO fast charging, which isn't relevant here) vs 230VAC in NZ.
The cord compatibility would be sort of related to the above question, I won't know what they are rated for until I get a car over - unless someone with grey import experience chimes in.
The difference between the charging cables was something I learned while researching for the input voltage.
I agree that it's not really a car for a long road trip so charging away from home is really not something I'm worried about.
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Sam
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Re: new guy here & Q re: Japanese import i-Miev

Post by brendon_m »

Well if you are only planning on charging at home and the voltage proved to be an issue you could always just get a variac to bring the voltage down to what you want/need.

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Re: new guy here & Q re: Japanese import i-Miev

Post by ul9601 »

Yes that's always an option but how will I know IF the too high a voltage will be a problem - wouldn't it be already too late and possibly damaged the unit? (unless I play it safe and reduce the input voltage down to 200VAC to begin with)
Anyway, how many grey imports are there or percentage of total i-miev in Australia?
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Re: new guy here & Q re: Japanese import i-Miev

Post by brendon_m »

Realistically it should be fine for a few reasons.
minicabs seem to survive
They can take 100v-200v at least(why would you stop at 200v and not 230v)
All the owner handbooks I found online state 110v being fine and 230v being fine but faster
Unlikely mitsubishi would bother to build a charger that's only used in japan(but I guess it's possible)
The Japanese aren't new to creating products that take all of the worlds voltages and frequencies

The only ways I can think of is to get one and pull it apart and look at the labels on the charger
Or find a Japanese owners handbook and see what it says, but it'll probably say 200v
Or find a parts manual for a Japanese release and local release and see if the part numbers match
Call mitsubishi and ask (and wait for the silence...)
Find a Japanese vin (maybe from an auction listing) and ask the local mitsubishi parts guy for a price on the charger and get the part number that way and compare it as above or just Google it and see what images reveal


There aren't any grey import imievs here because mitsubishi sold them here and if it's sold here then you can't import that model in order to protect our dealers from losing the ability to bend people over.
There are a few minicabs kicking about as they were never released here.

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Re: new guy here & Q re: Japanese import i-Miev

Post by coulomb »

I've been following the myImiev.com forum about the on board chargers, and I'm 99.9% sure that the iMiev models for the Japanese market have the same on board charger as all the rest. They would be fine with up to 265 VAC or so. The US and parts of Australia are still 240 V nominal, and this causes no problems.

Of course, you might have to buy a new "granny charger" (portable EVSE), since it may well have a transformer as part of the power supply that is designed for 200 VAC, and if so would overheat. Or replace the transformer. I find the Chinese EVSEs with push button variable charge current to be useful.

Finally of course if you keep the portable EVSE, you'll have to replace the AC plug.
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Re: new guy here & Q re: Japanese import i-Miev

Post by ul9601 »

Oh I didn't know you couldn't import a car if it was sold in the country!!! You guys have it tough, man - I've read about restriction on modifications etc on other forums (this was when I was a boy racer driving a Skyline ;) )
If minicabs are holding up, probably safe, I guess.
Thanks guys.
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Re: new guy here & Q re: Japanese import i-Miev

Post by mikedufty »

I think my father had an issue with his i-miev stopping charging which he thinks was happening when the grid voltage was temporarily too high (>250V I think). Not sure if that means anything, but suggests there is some sort of built in protection, and that it is fine with 240V.
But only relevant if the Australian models have the same chargers as the Japanese, and if you know that, you 've answered your question already.

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