MAYNARD’S GARAGEMitsubishi i Electric Car Underpromises Overdelivers

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Mitsubishi i Electric Cars

Thursday, 01 December 2011

PHOTO COURTESY OF CREATIVE

The Mitsubishi i has a real-world driving of 69 miles city and 55 highway. prices after taking of the federal tax credit range $22,475 to $24,475. Cars can be and ordered now, with beginning in early 2012.

The four-door Mitsubishi i is the simplest electric car to date and possibly the satisfying to live with for its and utility. It’s also got the starting price.

This of Mitsubishi’s new green and fuel-efficient began its launch in November for Oregon, Washington and Hawaii. will have at least one car for drives, and preordered cars begin deliveries in early The rollout will be nationwide by the end of

The i has been on sale in Japan mid-2009 and in Europe, Australia and (through a partnership with since 2010. More 11,000 cars have sold in those countries. hopes to sell 1,500 of its EVs in the first full year and 450 preorders since Earth Day the dedicated website i.MitsubishiCars.com

The car has been modified for U.S. It is 4.3 inches wider and 8 inches for air bags and impact protection. The helps stability at highway and the i can do 80 mph (just not for very long).

has translated the EPA’s confusing equivalent mileage ratings of 126 city and 99 MPGe highway to a real-world rating of 69 miles 55 miles highway and 62 combined. In conditions and moderate climate, drivers will be able to get 80 on a charge.

It won’t take a in computer familiarity to get underway. The i is a conversion from the gasoline sold in Japan and elsewhere, but it give the impression of a cobbled-up EV. It is quite progressive, with an lithium ion battery pack and a system to keep those 88 comfortable and functioning.

This EV has a key for starting and a gearshift, not a like device to engage With a one-speed transmission, it into eco mode for maximum drive for power or B-mode to more braking energy. The and brake pedals look and much like a traditional Throttle response is familiar, if a slow, and the brake response is as as any other economy car.

The can feel jolty over roads, but much can be forgiven in overall agreeable experience.

With two trim levels, for the base ES model starts at including an $850 freight The price drops to $22,475 taking into account the federal tax credit. Standard are acceptable for a $20,000 car, remote locking, power and mirrors, four-speaker digital system, driver’s seat air conditioning and 120-volt charging and the MiEV Remote System to or cool the car and set the charging timer.

most early adopters be more likely to purchase the SE, which starts at $24,475 the tax credit. It’s dressed up an appealing two-tone black-and-brown of upgraded upholstery (instead of black), fog lights, automatic and alloy wheels. It also is upgradable with option such as a navigation system rearview camera.

Also is the Premium package, which, for an $2,790, gets you a battery a quick-charge port, navigation and phone connectivity.

Charging time for a depleted would take about 22 with the 120-volt, level- 1 charging cable, or seven with a dedicated 240-volt, charger. And a level-3 public station would give an 80 charge in less than an hour.

Mitsubishi wants to EV ownership simple. It isn’t to reinvent the concept of a battery-powered car or the campaigns of the Nissan Leaf and Volt.

The Mitsubishi i is an affordable car that has usable range and utility.

Mark Maynard is in cyberspace at This e-mail is being protected from You need JavaScript enabled to it. Find photo galleries and news at Facebook.com/ MaynardsGarage.

Box: 2012 Mitsubishi i

• style: compact, four-seat, rear-drive electric vehicle hatchback

• Motor: AC synchronous permanent water-cooled and maintenance-free

• Battery: 330-volt lithium ion

• Charging 22.5 hours on household 7 hours on level-2 240-volt

Mitsubishi i Electric Cars

• Single speed, fixed gear

• Power: 66 hp at 3,000-6,000 rpm

• range: 69 miles city, 57 hwy

• Cargo space: 13.2 cu. ft. to back seats folded

• head/leg/shoulder room: 35.6/33.8/54.8 in.


• 144.7/100.4 in.

• Curb weight: lbs.

• Turning circle: ft.

• Standard equipment includes: windows and locks; mirrors; AM/FM/CD audio system digital playback capability; electric power steering; LED driver’s seat heater; air conditioning system with filter; vehicle security; and system

• Safety features include: six air electronic traction and stability front vented disc rear drums with ABS and brake-force distribution

• Base $29,975, including $850 charge; base price $7,500 federal tax credit:

• Where assembled: Japan

• 3-year/36,000-mile bumperto- bumper; powertrain; 8-year/100,000-mile battery

Mitsubishi i Electric Cars

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