Looks like coming back for a third crack at the mountain was the right move for Mitsubishi. At the 2014 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb this past weekend, the two all-electric Mitsubishis, one piloted by Greg Tracy, the other by Hiroshi Masuoka came in first and second, respectively, in the Electric Vehicle division.
The EVs were the third iteration of the MiEV Evolution prototype racer, which until now has had a tough time getting to the top of the podium. The first version crashed in 2012 and came in second and third – behind Nobuhiro "Monster" Tajima – last year. This year, Monster suffered a transponder glitch and his final time
So, if Monster equaled his time from last year, then the Mistubishi drivers must have improved their times up the hill to beat him. They did more than that, though, dramatically lowering their times to 9:08.188 (Tracy) and 9:12.204 (Masuoka). What's most impressive is that Tracy's low time was just 2.4 seconds behind overall winner Romain Dumas, who drove a gasoline-powered Le Mans sports car prototype up the hill. Find more details below.
Drivers Greg Tracy and Hiroshi Masuoka dominate the Electric Vehicle division in the innovative Mitsubishi MiEV Evolution III racing prototype
Mon, Jun 30, 2014 - Colorado Springs, Colorado - A pair of Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc. (MMNA) technologically advanced MiEV Evolution III all-electric prototype racecars placed first and second within the Electric Vehicle division in the 92st running of the famous Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (PPIHC) on Sunday, June 29th in the skillful hands of six-time PPIHC motorcycle champion Greg Tracy and two-time Dakar Rally winner Hiroshi Masuoka, respectively.
Finishing a mere 2.4 seconds behind overall 2014 Pikes Peak race winner Romain Dumas and his gasoline-powered Le Mans sports car prototype, the stage has been set for highly energy-efficient and sustainable electric-powered vehicles like the Mitsubishi MiEV Evolution III to soon become the dominant force in this challenging one-of-a-kind motorsport competition.
American Greg Tracy and his Mitsubishi MiEV Evolution III powered their way to overall victory in the Electric Vehicle division with a remarkably quick time of 9 minutes 8.188 seconds – a new record for the category.
With his triumphant pace in the 2014 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, Tracy is the first participant in the event's long-running history to record a sub-10 minute lap time in both two-wheel as well as four-wheel racing categories.
"The Mitsubishi Motors team prepared a fantastic car for me. This victory was truly a team effort," said Tracy. "I want to thank the team and also Masuoka-san for developing such a phenomenal racing machine in the MiEV Evolution III."
Japanese rally racing legend Hiroshi Masuoka recorded an excellent runner-up finish just behind teammate Tracy in the Electric Vehicle division with a time of 9 minutes 12.204 seconds.
"First of all, I would like to congratulate Greg on winning the Electric Vehicle division – he drove the MiEV Evolution III spectacularly and definitely deserves this win," said a gracious Masuoka. "I could not deliver an outright win, but I am proud to be a part of our excellent 1-2 finish. What's more, as a team principal in addition to being a driver, it's great to see our young and upcoming engineers excel in this racing program as they will play a key role in Mitsubishi Motors' development of electric vehicle (EV) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) technology in future vehicles."
For more information on the innovative Mitsubishi MiEV Evolution III and the 2014 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, please visit media.mitsubishicars.com and ppihc.com.
About Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc.
Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc., (MMNA) is responsible for all research & development, manufacturing, marketing, sales and financial services for Mitsubishi Motors in the United States. MMNA sells sedans and crossovers/SUVs through a network of approximately 400 dealers. MMNA is leading the way in the development of highly-efficient, affordably-priced new gasoline-powered automobiles while using its industry-leading knowledge in battery electric vehicles to develop future EV and PHEV models. For more information, contact the Mitsubishi Motors News Bureau at (888) 560-6672 or visit media.mitsubishicars.com.