Paris Auto Show: A Short Test Drive in the Electric Mitsubishi IMiEV

Martin Schwoerer
by Martin Schwoerer
paris auto show a short test drive in the electric mitsubishi imiev

Take that, GM. Formerly-sick car company Mitsubishi Motors has a working electric car; they’re already testing a fleet of a few hundred units in Japan. The Mitsubishi innovative Vehicle promises a 75mph top speed and a 100 mile range. It’ll take seven hours to recharge the battery using a normal socket (220V). If you’ve got high voltage, figure an 80 percent recharge within 30 minutes. Being a totally new car, the iMiEV benefits from the packaging advantages inherent to electric propulsion. The Li-Ion batteries are located beneath the passenger department, and the small electric engine is rear-midships. Thus, despite a sub-four meter’s length, it’s roomy enough for four. The Innovative Vehicle’s interior is airy but spartan/simple– no expensive materials for a lightweight car that wants to be affordable for commuters. I could only take the Mitsu EV for a few-minutes’ spin in a parking lot, so I can’t verify any of company’s range or speed claims. But acceleration is strong, smooth and silent, the steering is pleasant, and it brakes in a solid fashion. It feels like a proper, developed car, not like a prototype. No magic-year nonsense; commercial sales will begin in 2009. If Mitsubishi can keep their performance promises, this one’s a winner, at least for urban early adopters.

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  • Azfelix Caffeine pills (200mg) work well as they are quick and portable. Although caffeine is a diuretic, the pill not being accompanied by a large cup of liquid has its advantages. The US Army released part of a study where it found that 400mg followed by 400mg more 4 hours later can energize a body for eight hours. The downside is the need for a dedicated recovery period immediately afterwards. As I recall other findings were not shared publicly.
  • SCE to AUX Base Price: $99,795 US / $115,133 CANAs Tested: $100,370 US / $115,133 CANBoth versions can't cost the same in CAN $.
  • SCE to AUX @Matt Posky: This may surprise you, but I agree with your criticisms is this story.This vehicle has the look and weight of the Telluride, but without the right chops. A vehicle like this is intended to be a great highway cruiser loaded up with all the stuff one takes on a trip - not a 0-60 racer.My former Sedona (RIP, sniff) had a great blend of space, power, and towing capacity. It was lovely for countless road trips, but it was a ponderous commuter.The EV9 won't make a great road trip car due to its short range, and it is too hulking to make sense as a commuter. They should have fitted a 150 - 200 kWh battery so it could at least go some distance, and that might justify the bulk.No way I'd go in for ~$60k for this vehicle.
  • Jeff S I like the looks of this car and in today's dollars it might not be that bad a buy but my issues with this Genesis would be Hyundai's reliability in recent years has been below average and getting a car like this serviced at a Hyundai dealership. I do like the rear reclining rear seats and the massage settings. Beautiful car but I would take the safer option of a preowned Lexus which gives you better reliability and lower maintenance costs than the South Koreans and the Germans. Genesis is definitely a luxury car with the extras that are standard but it is still a Hyundai. These will depreciate a lot as do the German cars which once they get old a Pandora's box of issues crop up and they become expensive to maintain. Good write up.
  • Tylanner Cinnabon is the holy grail but Starbucks or Dunkin will do. I will only resort gas-station coffee in extraordinary circumstances.