Mitsubishi Aims To Plug In Entire Range Within 4 Years

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2014 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

2014 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

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In the automotive world, there are automakers who ignore plug-in vehicle technology, those who experiment with it, those who do it because they have to, and those for whom it is part of the company future

With its 2012 i electric minicar already on sale in the U.S., and its Outlander plug-in hybrid on the way this fall, Mitsubishi is clearly the latter, but according to Autocar, the Japanese automaker is planning more than just a few plug-in cars.

Over the next four years, it reports, Mitsubishi will refresh its entire model range, offering customers a plug-in and regular version of each. 

Rather than offer electric and plug-in hybrid versions of the same car, Mitsubishi’s aim is to build electric-only variants of its smaller gasoline cars, while building plug-in hybrid versions of its larger and sportier cars. 

Mitsubishi Outlander

Mitsubishi Outlander

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Looking at Mitsubishi’s current U.S. offerings, we’d expect this translates to offering an electric compact similar in size to the current 2012 Lancer, while offering plug-in hybrid solutions for all of its other cars. 

Although it has yet to prove its plug-in hybrid technology in the marketplace, Mitsubishi is confident that it has engineered a drivetrain that consumers will love. 

Talking about the up-coming 2013 Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in Hybrid, Lance Bradley, managing director of Mitsubishi UK, was keen to emphasize the car’s performance. 

2012 Mitsubishi i

2012 Mitsubishi i

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“[It] feels like it offers the performance of a 3.0-liter V6 petrol engine,” he said, adding that he expected the vehicle to steal sales from the Lexus RX450h and other crossover vehicles. 

With a predicted all-electric range of 25 miles and a gas mileage efficiency expected to be around 109 miles per gallon, Bradley could be right -- especially if it is the first plug-in hybrid crossover to the market. 

Of course, the real challenge for Mitsubishi is to convince die-hard fans that plug-in technology is the way to go. 

And when that convincing could come at the hands of a diesel-electric plug-in Evo XI? That’s when we really do know plug-in vehicles are having an effect. 


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Comments (12)
  1. "109 miles per gallon"
    Let me add my normal complaint about this obvious BS MPG number. They will be luck to have the EPA MPGe crack 100 and the MPG crack 40. So the 109 MPG is probably the normal BS where the value of the electricity is not accounted for, e.g. 230 mpg Chevy Volt.

  2. Actually, my Chevy Volt shows 250+mpg. It is more like 680mpg.

    Yes, my electricity is free (I charge at work).

  3. Our Coda EV fuel is free. Our electric bill is in the minus column, since we have new solar panels. John Briggs, our fuel is FREE-- no limbs or heads will be blown off protecting its supply(sorry to be so graphic, but it's from the heart). And from our electric company-- we'll get a check.

  4. Electricity was cheap, even before my solar panels. Even on the grid I was paying .02 cents/mile, which would translate to 175mpg with gas $3.50/gallon. Now, like others, our car is running off of solar, and we overproduce to the tune of $250/year.

  5. Mitsubishi has so consistently over-promised and under-delivered, that I have come to believe they are better at manufacturing propaganda than they are at manufacturing cars. Case in point...i-miev sales.

  6. Yes, it's the right direction for Mitsu. This year is officially the hottest ever recorded and rapid climate change is a no-brainer. That means we'll have to drive more efficient vehicles that don't add to the CO2 overload.

    The only other issue is cost. $31,000 for an iMiev or $15,000 for a Scion iQ? People don't want to wait 10 years for payback, even though they have good intentions.

  7. 'Its all about the battery stupid' Great observation from my daughter. Price is the most important motivator to go alternative fuel etc. All that government incentives do is abort good business cases, just look at the mess. After mis-investing 10s of billions, no one can produce a battery efficiently enough to move the EV price down. The problem is Govt and investors who love a hand out.

  8. If some body don't start making something, it can't get a better model or a better battery. So quit complaining about the company's out there trying

  9. Johnny you gotta study a bit more. If you're in Cali, take off $10k because of federal and tax savings and the iMiev is $21k. Then add up your gas and extremely low maintenance costs. Not to mention the hidden costs you and I bear of keeping a military flotilla in the middle east to protect the flow of petro. Or did you count that?

  10. Now, if they could only remember that people actually have to be SEEN in the damn things... I mean, could the 'i' BE any uglier? I really wish they had the right design team in place because we really need efforts like this to succeed. They're not casting a wide enough net here with these offerings.

  11. With the weight of a wheel-mounted drive motor, indeed how would one change a tire?

    Maybe the way an electric car’s designer, using these things, should go is a 1920's-style—--demountable rim—on which literally—--the rim—--is dismounted from the rest of the wheel. It created special problems though on how to carry this on the car.

    It is still hard to see how the motor is protected from road shocks though. As advertised, the suspension system absorbs road shock—--protecting the body.

    I don't see it as taking long for road shock to make a mess out of these motors. Are we just writing off the motors as disposable?

  12. @David: The wheel unbolts from the hub-mounted drive motor, I suspect. See also this article on wheel motors, complete with exploded diagram:

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