2012 Mitsubishi iMiEV Autonet ca

23 Фев 2014 | Author: | Комментарии к записи 2012 Mitsubishi iMiEV Autonet ca отключены
Mitsubishi i-MiEV family

Editor’s Ratings:

Getting charged up over i-MiEV small car

It takes a certain level of skill and know-how to get the most range out of an i-MiEV.

If you genuinely want a 2012 Mitsubishi i-MiEV, chances are you already have one. With a total of 69 sold in Canada at time of writing, it’s not a mass-market vehicle by any stretch of the imagination.

An i-MiEV owner probably already knows more about the vehicle than I ever could, so this is intended for those curious about electric vehicles in general, or even on the fence about getting one.

For the uninitiated, the i-MiEV (Mitsubishi Innovative Electric Vehicle — pronounced eye-meev — version of the Japanese-market “i” model) first went on sale in Canada in December, 2011. It’s a purely electric vehicle, meaning it doesn’t use any gasoline, produces zero emissions and has to be plugged in to an electrical outlet to be recharged.

The i-MiEV has a maximum driving range of 155 km, though like other EVs, range will change based on several different factors, from weather conditions and climate control use, to the vehicle’s speed and where it’s driving.

And just as a race car driver has to hone his or her skills for maximum efficiency getting around a track, so it takes a certain level of skill and know-how to get the most range out of an i-MiEV. To be completely honest, I have almost as much fun keeping my range up in the Mitsubishi through busy city streets as I do taking sports cars around a track.

It’s important to know the i-MiEV is very much a city vehicle. Besides its compact dimensions and miniscule turning circle, its electric range can be extended dramatically by driving around town. At one point I drive approximately 30 km in mostly stop-and-go traffic, but my range goes down just 10 km.

On the flip side, taking it on the highway will drastically reduce range, as will turning on the heat or air conditioning.

There are three drive modes between which you can switch on the fly, with “B” mode being the one I use the majority of the time. It takes maximum advantage of the brake’s regenerative properties in heavy traffic, and the skilled i-MiEV driver might rarely even have to apply the brakes. ECO is mainly meant for highway driving, limiting throttle response and increasing brake regeneration over the “normal” D mode.

When it comes time to put the i-MiEV to rest for the night, it can be plugged into any regular 120-volt household wall socket. It’s a … simple process (easier than putting fuel in a vehicle, in fact), with the only hitch being that the hefty power pack near the wall plug has to sit flat.

In terms of driving manners, the i-MiEV acts like a lot of tall, urban-focused, non-luxury hatchbacks. Steering is very muted, handling is sub-par, and the ride is quite choppy.

General Motors is going the more futuristic route with the interior of its Volt plug-in vehicle, but the i-MiEV relies on a more traditional look and setup. I’d be surprised if an uninitiated driver became confused with anything. Even the electric charge gauge is set up to look like a typical fuel gauge, going from “F” to “E”.

The i-MiEV is a four-seater with less-than-comfortable seats that provide plenty of room for all occupants, and a generous amount of space in the cargo area to lug around stuff. In fact, if you fold the rear seats of the i-MiEV, it can hold more stuff than Mitsubishi’s Lancer Sportback wagon.

This being my first true extended road test of an electric vehicle, I can say without hesitation that I “get” the whole electric vehicle phenomenon. I feel a genuine sense of satisfaction driving by gas stations knowing I won’t have to fill up at the end of the week, and I love the conversations generated.

Mitsubishi’s little EV isn’t meant for everyone, but for the city dweller who doesn’t have a huge family or a 150 km daily commute, it’s a fantastic vehicle. The i-MiEV itself isn’t terribly exciting to drive, but it’s without a doubt one of the most interesting vehicles I’ve driven.

Mitsubishi i-MiEV family

Fact file

Year/Make/Model . 2012 Mitsubishi i-MiEV

Price as tested . $32,998

Options . none

EnerGuide fuel economy ratings . 1.9 L/100km city; 2.4 L/100km hwy

Observed fuel economy . 1.8 L/100km over 165 km

Warranty (powertrain) . 5 years/ 100,000 km

Competitors . Chevrolet Volt; Nissan Leaf; Toyota Prius Plug-in

Warranty (basic) . 3 years/ 60,000 km

Freight . $1,450

Mitsubishi i-MiEV family
Mitsubishi i-MiEV family
Mitsubishi i-MiEV family

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