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Last month, Consumer Reports decidedly panned the Mitsubishi i after a test drive of the small electric vehicle. The magazine doesn't dislike everything little and battery powered, though, and was quite a bit kinder to the Fiat 500e, saying it is "actually kind of a cool little car."

CR released a two-minute video for the Fiat test drive (available below) and complimented the car on its styling, with kudos given to its interior color scheme, special wheels and grille. CR noted that the car has little in the way of back-seat room and storage, but said it wasn't any worse than the regular 500 compacts.

As for performance, CR admitted that it was hard to figure out whether the 111-horsepower 500e would regularly hit its stated 80-mile single-charge range because the test drive was done in cold weather, but did say the car felt quicker than the non-turbo 500 because of the torque generated by the electric motor. In fact, CR went as far as calling the 500e "a hoot to drive." The publication criticized the Mitsubishi i for its sluggishness as well as for what CR said was the model's cheap finish.



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 28 Comments
      The Wasp
      • 2 Years Ago
      "there's lots of charging stations around" Uh, what? I have not seen one in public. Ever.
        Kenny
        • 2 Years Ago
        @The Wasp
        If you visit www.afdc.energy.gov/stations there's a list of every alternative fuel (including EV) station in the country.
        mapoftazifosho
        • 2 Years Ago
        @The Wasp
        I never looked and then I found this app...there are 7 of them within a few blocks of my home...kinda funny once you finally notice them...
        winc06
        • 2 Years Ago
        @The Wasp
        I haven't seen any either. And I live in a coastal suburb of Los Angeles. There may be some you can track down with a phone app though.
          lasertekk
          • 2 Years Ago
          @winc06
          The police station parking lot has one here in the area I work. I've seen others in malls, hospital parking lots and the local civic center--all just north of Los Angeles also. I've seen even more signs directing towards charging locations, but have not actually taken the time to see the units.
        paulwesterberg
        • 2 Years Ago
        @The Wasp
        Electric car chargers don't really stand out much so they are easy to overlook. These online maps can help you find charging locations: http://carstations.com/ http://www.plugshare.com/ http://www.afdc.energy.gov/fuels/electricity_locations.html
        aatheus
        • 2 Years Ago
        @The Wasp
        What city and state do you live in? It definitely varies based on what part of the country (or indeed, which country) you're in. The coastal states of the US have pretty good coverage, but it's still best in metro areas.
      Kimmi
      • 2 Years Ago
      It's a "me too" type of car, so don't expect it to be cheap or to sell in large numbers
      Spec
      • 2 Years Ago
      How did they get to report on a vehicle that is not available yet? I thought they carefully purchased cars to avoid a conflict of interest. I guess they do a little puffery as well at CR.
        SublimeKnight
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Spec
        I guess selling magazines to grannies, which tell them which toaster oven to buy doesn't keep the lights on anymore.
      Reggie
      • 2 Years Ago
      Definitely makes electric cars cool. Should be very popular.
        Spec
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Reggie
        I could be popular if they gave it a reasonable price and sold it everywhere. But they are probably going to price it high and only sell in ZEV states.
      RC
      • 2 Years Ago
      I want one
      paulwesterberg
      • 2 Years Ago
      Anyone know the msrp? I would consider buying this(fit EV, or focus EV) but I don't think that any of these compliance cars will be on sale in this part of the country for at least a year.
        Alfonso T. Alvarez
        • 2 Years Ago
        @paulwesterberg
        The Spark EV will be superior if only for the huge difference in passenger and cargo room. I would also expect the technology to be better as GM has significantly more experience than either Fiat or Chrysler in this area.
        MTN RANGER
        • 2 Years Ago
        @paulwesterberg
        I have a bad feeling it will be priced closer to the Focus EV than the iMiEV or base Leaf.
        paulwesterberg
        • 2 Years Ago
        @paulwesterberg
        Oh btw the 2013 leaf is now for sale in my area. A local dealership just listed an S for just $31,120, only 2,320 over msrp. :-P
      Letstakeawalk
      • 2 Years Ago
      Great little city car.
      • 2 Years Ago
      Compliance vehicle and small size, I don't know why anyone would pick this up over a 2013 Leaf with similar range and charging times. If you just want the HOV sticker, the $199 Leaf lease seems like a no brainer. Doubt Fiat is going to come close to Nissan since they don't really want to sell the 500e anyways.
        Spec
        • 2 Years Ago
        It is always nice to at least have other options and body styles to choose from. The Prius wouldn't be selling so hot if there were anyone providing it with good competition. The C-Max is finally providing some competition.
      Spec
      • 2 Years Ago
      "The publication criticized the Mitsubishi i for its sluggishness" I'm sure the Mitsubishi-i controller is extremely conservative and only allows slow acceleration in order to obtain a somewhat acceptable range using its small 16KWH battery.
      2 wheeled menace
      • 2 Years Ago
      Not too bad for a compliance car. 147ft-lb off the line is going to feel beastly in this tiny car. I hope they put it next to the regular gas powered Fiats in showrooms, so that it can be driven side-by-side next to the turbo and naturally aspirated models. People will understand the appeal of electric upon the first application of the pedal!
      JP
      • 2 Years Ago
      I like it, but I think the Spark EV is going to spank it. This looks better though, and they have great commercials.
        Spec
        • 2 Years Ago
        @JP
        I'd like to believe that but the Fiat 500 seems to have gained some of that Mini-Cooper mojo whereas the Spark is view as just an econobox.
      Stevie Diffy
      • 2 Years Ago
      The Fiat 500 on Identity Theft was one cool looking little car.
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