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Mitsubishi Unveils Electric Pikes Peak Racer

536-hp, AWD racer set to "race to the clouds."

Mitsubishi's zero-emissions racers are setting their sites for Pikes Peak once again: the company unveiled its new MiEV Evolution II racers ahead of a competition debut at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb next month.

The last time Mitsubishi took to the world-famous race, it brought the MiEV Evolution, which looked a bit like an i-MiEV with the world's largest aerodynamic kit. This year, however, the visual cues from the egg-like production car are gone; if anything, the racer's gaping front air dam and vertical headlights ape a Le Mans prototype racer.

The comparisons between electric Mitsubishis and LMP wondercars end there, however, because the car you see above is an all-electric, purpose built hill-climb vehicle. The Evolution II begins where the Evolution left off last year: it retains the four-wheel, four-electric-motor setup of its predecessor, as well as the tube chassis. Forget last year's peak power output of 322 horsepower, however: this year, the four motors will make a combined 100 kilowatts, or a healthy 536 horsepower. The battery pack's maximum capacity is 50 kWh.

To keep that power under control, Mitsubishi looked to something else with "Evolution" in its name, borrowing the Super All-Wheel Control (S-AWC) programming from the Lancer Evolution, as well as active yaw and active stability control. The idea here is to make the Evolution II use individual motors to vector torque, individually adding power or dragging wheels to increase cornering speeds. When all is said and done Mitsubishi says it's looking to score the top spot in Pikes Peak's EV division.

Mitsubishi will field two of the cars in its race to the top of Pikes Peak. The first car will be piloted by Hiroshi Masuoka, who was behind the wheel of last year's second-place-finishing MiEV Evolution; the second will be piloted by six-time Pikes Peak motorcycle champion Greg Tracy.

The race kicks off on June 25 in Colorado.

Source: Mitsubishi