Mitsubishi is stretching the electric jellybean. For years, the i-MiEV was regular presence at Mitsubishi's auto show booths around the world, and the car rightfully earned its nickname because of its rounded shape. Today, at the Geneva Motor Show, Mitsubishi finally unveiled a version of the i-MiEV that looks much more more at home among the alternative-powertrain car fleet of the near future.

But there's more being elongated here than just the shape. The official range of the standard i (as the i-MiEV is known in the US) is 62 miles. The Concept CA-MiEV – where the CA stands for Compact and Advanced – is supposed to be able to go 300 kilometers (186 miles) from a 28-kWh lithium-ion battery and lightweight 80-kW motor/inverter/charger unit. This is kind of astonishing, given the range estimates of other compact and midsize EVs on the market today – most are in the 80-100-mile range. Of course, the specific test used to get the 186-mile result matters, too, since the regular i received 98 miles on the LA4 driving cycle range. The US-i has a 16-kWh pack.

The increased distance means that Mitsubishi is talking about the Concept CA-MiEV as the "suburban EV," with enough range for "about one week of driving for an average European driver." If you need more, Mitsubishi hints that the flat battery pack leaves room for a range-extender. Add in convenience features like WiTricity wireless charging and the ability for the car to send an emergency email if it's stolen, and you've got the commuting vehicle of the future. With a coefficient of drag of just 0.26 and boomerang lights, of course.

Mitsubishi is saying the CA-MiEV is "not planned for production," and is instead a showcase for "the various technologies MMC intends to introduce mid- to long-term across its range of global vehicles." That means, perhaps, some of the goodies here could make their way to rebadged, updated versions of the Peugeot iOn and Citroën C-Zero models, both based on the i-MiEV. Check out our gallery of the CA-MiEV and read more in the press release below.
Show full PR text
2013 Mitsubishi Concept CA-MiEV*
Geneva, March 5th

The suburban EV

Ever since it started R&D on electro-mobility back in 1966, today's Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) always considered that electric vehicles (EV) should eventually become long-term core products – a view vindicated by recent concerns over global warming. From the pioneering i-MiEV in 2009 and a self-imposed objective of 20% of EV-based cars by 2020, MMC has already made significant steps in this direction as demonstrated with the all-new Outlander Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle ("PHEV") and its most innovative "Dual Design" architecture. Expanding further, Mitsubishi Motors now explores the full electro-mobility engineering palette – Pure Electric (EV), Hybrid Electric (HEV), Plug-in Hybrid Electric (PHEV) – hinted at through two concept cars world-premiered at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show, next to the New Outlander PHEV , one of which is the Concept CA-MiEV electric vehicle. Showcase Supported b y three years of i-MiEV global customer feedback since 2009 as well as continuous progress in battery technology and electric drivetrain, MMC now considers taking pure EVs beyond a mostly urban environment with a next generation compact EV such as this Concept CA-MiEV. Whilst not planned for production, this concept car was intended as a showcase of the various technologies MMC intends to introduce mid-to long-term across its range of global vehicles.

Compact & Advanced technology

In particular, this demonstrator can rely on next generation EV systems and high density batteries, light weight as well as advanced aerodynamics to offer a 300 km driving range (or about one week of driving for an average European driver** ), perfectly suited for suburban & country daily life. Further innovative real-life features include magnetic resonance wireless charging technology, smartphone activated functions, etc,..

* Average driving distance in Europe: 14,000 km/year (source: ACEA)

0.26 sleek

Mitsubishi Motors first true concept car in years, Concept CA-MiEV can be understood as a declaration of intent, stressing the return to Engineering 's primacy within the corporation to better serve (global) customer demand. Already hinted at through the first products of MMC's latest product cycle (pioneering 44g/ km* Outlander PHEV, lightweight 92 g/km* Global Small , etc,... ), this creed will be further adhered to with the introduction of next generation technologies throughout the range over the coming years. Design will play no small part in this new development with a clear emphasis on aerodynamic performance. After Global Small's segment record 0.27 Cd*, the 5-door Concept CA-MiEV compact hatchback takes the baton with a Cd target of 0.26.

Pebble-sleek, the arrow-shaped Concept CA-MiEV brings a degree of high tech sleekness to small car design, all the way to its unusual canopy sloping rear roof line. Highly efficient ( full flat floor, rear-view cameras, minimal air intakes, rear diffuser, ...), Concept CA-MiEV is also full of dramatic detailing – from the boomerang-sculptured front and rear lights to the ascending side character line enclosing the rear wheel arches to create a strong forward motion effect.

*EU Specs.

High Density

To power Concept CA-MiEV, MMC inaugurates its next generation high efficiency drivetrain , including:
  • All-in-One integrated power unit ( 80 kW motor + inverter + charger) - to help with energy management, packaging and weight reduction.
  • Compact flat battery pack – to help with packaging (esp. for possible later applications like range extender, ... ) and better long term battery performance.
  • Magnetic resonance wireless charging technology – to help with user-friendliness, as jointly announced in September 2011* by WiTricity Corporation, IHI Corporation and Mitsubishi Motors Corporation and currently under investigation and testing.
  • *http://www.mitsubishi-motors.com/publish/pressrelease_en/corporate/2011/news/detailb927.html
  • High density energy Lithium-ion batteries – to help with energy efficiency and also with packaging ( 28 Kwh available ).
Connected

Roomy, sleek, lightweight and efficient, a future electric vehicle like Concept CA
- MiEV – but also any future ICE, HEV or PHEV Mitsubishi vehicle for that matter) shall also be connected to the rest of the planet, infrastructure permitting, with telematics features such as:
  • Automatic e-mailing in case of theft
  • Automatic e-calling in case of an emergency
  • Remote controlling (engine start/no start, panic alarm, door locking, ...)
  • Data transfer (maps,...) from smart phone to in-car system
  • Remote energy monitoring or pre-heating for EVs and PHEVs (already featured with
  • Outlander PHEV)
  • Etc,...

Specifications (MMC data)

Dimensions (L x W x H) Wheelbase

4050 x 1775 x 1550 mm 2550 mm

Cd

0.26

Seating capacity

5

Est. driving range

300 km

Max. output

80 kW

Battery

Type

Lithium-ion

Capacity

28 kWh

Controller

Inverter

Drive

Front wheel drive