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14 June 2012

Mitsubishi's i-MiEV Evolution is ready to hit the slopes of Pikes Peak

Words by Jopet Tocino
Although it's true that electric-powered cars have been around for quite some time now, the common misconception about them is that they aren't as good as their gas-powered counterparts. Well, at least in terms of performance. Enter the Mitsubishi i-MiEV Evolution
The i-MiEV Evolution is the latest Frankenstein to come out from the workshop of Mitsubishi Motors Company (MMC).  Set to compete in the upcoming 2012 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb this July, this is surely one electric car that's made to give petrol-power a run for their money.
While we've seen design sketches as early as March, it's only now that Mitsubishi revealed what the real deal would look like. Classifying the i-MiEV Evo as a “heavily-modified version” of its production counterpart is still a bit of an understatement. For starters, it's only got two doors and is just big enough to fit the driver. It has also been fitted with ultra-wide wheel arches, a huge rear spoiler, and a roll cage just in case... ahem... something bad happens. Measuring at 4.34 meters long, 1.9 meters wide, and 1.3 meters tall, it's actually longer, wider, and lower than the road-going i-MiEV. Basically, it's an i-MiEV on steroids and then some. 
The i-MiEV Evolution shares the same motor, drive battery, and other major components with its production counterpart. But to cope with the challenges of Pikes Peak, they've souped-up the drivetrain and modified it as an all-wheel-drive. And driving duties of this beast belongs to none other than two-time Dakar Rally winner, Hiroshi Masuoka.
This prototype has been developed specifically to showcase what MMC has achieved in terms of their advanced EV control and EV component technologies. Their R&D team will be using all the information gathered from the i-MiEV Evolution's excursion in Pikes Peak for the development of future EV's. Just don't be too hopeful thought that they'll build a road-legal version of this electric-powered bullet.