Mitsubishi is returning to Colorado’s famous ‘Race To The Clouds’ with a pair of electric race cars utilizing technology from the automaker’s road-going i-MiEV hatch.
Mitsubishi entered the Pikes Peak competition for the first time last year with its original i-MiEV Evolution prototype, coming second to Toyota in the event’s electric car class.
This year the automaker is running two upgraded versions of the i-MiEV Evolution (dubbed the MiEV Evolution II), and is aiming for the top spot. Of course, Toyota is also bringing an upgraded car to Pikes Peak this year so competition will be fierce.
Like last year’s i-MiEV Evolution, the MiEV Evolution II uses parts used in production vehicles combined with a high-capacity battery and high-output motors. Based on experience gained from last year’s race, Mitsubishi installed an all-wheel-drive system that consists of four electric motors (one for each wheel) and is controlled by the automaker’s Super-All Wheel Control (S-AWC) technology.
Peak output of the MiEV Evolution II is 536 horsepower, which should see the cars easily eclipse the 10:31 time of the 321-horsepower i-MiEV Evolution from last year. Other modifications include lighter weight and a more aerodynamic body.
One MiEV Evolution II will be driven by two-time Dakar Rally overall champion Hiroshi Masuoka, who piloted the i-MiEV Evolution to second place honors last year. He will be joined by Greg Tracy, six-time Pikes Peak motorcycle champion, in the second car.
For Mitsubishi, participating in events like Pikes Peak with its electric car technology provides it with a multitude of data and knowhow critical for development of road-going models. Key areas include the management of battery consumption and electric motor temperature.
The 91st Pikes Peak Hill Climb is scheduled for June 30.