Be patient all you pure electric car proponents, the Mitsubishi i-MIEV will soon be offered in the good old US of A. So far, proponents of electric cars have had to settle for hybrids that include a gasoline engine that kicks in when the car travels beyond a certain speed. But very soon now we will have the chance to buy pure electric cars.
So far, General Motors and Nissan are the only companies who will be releasing electric cars in the very near future. GM's Chevrolet Volt is not a true pure electric car. It includes a gasoline engine that is used to recharge the battery pack that runs the car. Nissan's Leaf is a pure electric. A third electric car that will make its debut here soon is Mitsubishi's i-MIEV.
The i-MIEV has been available in Japan for about two years and about 20,000 of them have been sold. The price is about $23,000 US dollars. The current i-MIEV can be charged by 110 or 220 household current or a quick charging station. It takes 12 hours to recharge on 110 volts or six hours using 220 volts. It features a Lithium ion battery pack that works a 64 horsepower Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motor, which is in the trunk. It has a range of 80 to 100 miles and has a top speed of 80 mph. It features rear-wheel drive and those who have driven it say it handles like a go-cart.
A surprise about this four-door car is its 113 lbs.-ft. of torque which permits it to beat just about any car on the road when that traffic light turns from red to green. Bucket seats appear up front and there is room for two people in the back seats. Although the current i-MIEV has a plain radio in the center console, talk is that the model introduced into the U.S. will include a radio with a large video screen.
The car will be available in the U.S. probably in the fourth quarter of 2011 and will cost about $25,000.