The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle), with official tailpipe emissions of just 44 g/km CO2, has completed the Asia Cross Country Rally.
Capable of over 30 miles of range in pure EV mode, the Outlander PHEV is soon to start being built in EU-specification. A pre-production Outlander PHEV was entered in the 2013 Asia Cross Country Rally (or “AXCR”) which took place 10-16 August between Thailand and Laos.
An officially FIA-sanctioned race, the AXCR is an Asian take at a Dakar-type extreme cross country rally. Over 6 days, competitors drove over 2,000km on various road surfaces and conditions including mountain roads, muddy jungle and river crossings, making it a true challenge in terms of driving performance and endurance.
Out of a total of 20 entries in the four-wheeled category (of which 19 finished), the Outlander PHEV attracted attention as it was the only plug-in hybrid vehicle to participate; most competitors were in heavy-duty Diesel-powered pickup trucks.
Entered by a private team backed by Mitsubishi Motors, the sole Outlander PHEV finished 17th overall with no failure: quite a success for what was essentially a standard car – including the Twin Motor 4WD plug-in hybrid electric drivetrain, as well as the Super All Wheel Control (S-AWC) system – the only modifications being the regular cross-country racing preparation such as upgraded shock absorbers and springs, roll cage, under floor protection, exhaust and snorkel duct.
Completing such a tough rally with no problems confirmed the durability as well as the dynamic performance of Outlander PHEV just a few months before it starts its commercial career in world markets.
Mitsubishi will launch the Outlander PHEV sequentially, starting with selected PHEV markets (The Netherlands / Nordic countries) from October 2013 onwards. The other European markets will gradually follow from November 2013 to Q1 2014.