Mitsubishi Motors Delivers Innovative i MiEV Electric Vehicle to Pacific Gas and Electric Company for Joint Testing and Evaluation
Mitsubishi will Monitor Consumer Reaction to Four-Passenger Electric Car at the San Francisco Auto Show.
At the San Francisco Auto Show, consumers will get a sneak peek of Mitsubishi Motors’ innovative all-electric car - the i MiEV - which is being delivered to Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) for testing. Powered by an advanced lithium-ion battery, the Mitsubishi i MiEV will be the first of the new generation of lithium-ion-powered electric vehicles to be developed by a major automobile manufacturer that will be offered for public sale.
Extensive testing with the i MiEV has transpired over the past two years with seven major utility companies in Japan. The success of these programs quickened the vehicle’s development pace and prompted Mitsubishi Motors to begin selling electric vehicles in Japan in summer of 2009.
According to Tohru Hashimoto, corporate general manager of the i MiEV Business Promotion Office of Mitsubishi Motors Corporation, “The small, four-passenger Mitsubishi i MiEVs will enter into PG&E’s nationally - recognized prototype testing and evaluation program. This collaboration with one of the nation’s leading utility supporters of electric vehicles will provide us technical feedback on i MiEV vehicle and battery performance, as well as vehicle connection and integration into the U.S. electrical system.”
The rise in interest for electric vehicles and other alternative-fuel propulsion systems is dramatically shaping the way automakers and utility companies are approaching the opportunity. Through this program, PG&E hopes to help Mitsubishi Motors gauge how electric vehicles will most effectively connect to the electric grid of the future.
“Electric vehicles present a unique opportunity to reduce fuel costs and greenhouse gas emissions, which benefits our customers and the environment. One day, electric vehicles may even help to ease demand on the electric grid through powering homes and businesses,” said Brad Whitcomb, vice president of Marketing and Customer Innovation for PG&E. “We look forward to partnering with Mitsubishi to implement advanced technologies that will support electric vehicles in the marketplace, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help America become more energy independent.”
The i MiEV electric vehicle, which is based on Mitsubishi’s “i” gasoline-powered mini car already on sale in Japan, adapts a zero-emissions state-of-the-art electric drivetrain. A durable 330-volt lithium-ion battery system is located under the floor deck and powers a permanent magnet electric motor. With this packaging, the i MiEV is able to offer the same level of interior utility and space as the gasoline version while lowering the center of gravity for more stable handling. The 47 kW electric motor offers improved performance and quicker acceleration over the 64-hp gasoline version.
The advanced lithium-ion battery is developed by the Mitsubishi Motors Corporation / Mitsubishi Corporation / GS Yuasa joint venture company, Lithium Energy Japan. LEJ represents the leading edge in battery technology and promises up to 100 miles* of zero-emissions, economical driving on a single charge when packaged in the i MiEV.
*Japan 10-15 Mode Cycle
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