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How much money can you make selling a $20,000 electric car? Mitsubishi Motors thinks you can make plenty and, according to Japan's Nikkei business daily, expects its plug-in vehicles to turn a profit in two years. In the U.S., the company's i EV will cost $27,990 (or just $20,490 after the federal tax incentive is factored in). A company like Mitsubishi obviously looks at profit on a global basis, so we hope our lede wasn't too deceptive.

In any case, Mitsubishi's executive vice-president, Hiizu Ichikawa, reportedly told the Nikkei that the Japanese automaker expects to surpass its break-even point of 70,000 units sold annually by the fiscal year ending in March 2014. At that time, Mitsubishi's plug-ins will begin to contribute to the automaker's annual earnings.

Mitsubishi projects that sales of "green vehicles" will hit 25,000 units by the end of 2011, but with the addition of a plug-in hybrid version of its Outlander Sport in 2013, Mitsubishi is getting ready for annual sales of its plug-ins to steadily climb.

[Source: Automotive News – sub. req.]