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An affordable, semi-practical, entry-level EV

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No, that's not a Mitsubishi i-MiEV in a fat suit, it's the automaker's brand-new all-electric race car, and it's set to take on the 2012 Pike's Peak International Hill Climb in July. This isn't the first time we've seen an EV enter the Pike's Peak challenge – Nissan commissioned a Leaf for battle last year, a car that set the bar for all future electric racers.

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No, that's not a Mitsubishi i-MiEV in a fat suit, it's the automaker's brand-new all-electric race car, and it's set to take on the 2012 Pike's Peak International Hill Climb in July. This isn't the first time we've seen an EV enter the Pike's Peak challenge – Nissan commissioned a Leaf for battle last year, a car that set the bar for all future electric racers.

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Things are getting yet more interesting for this year's Pikes Peak International Hill Climb with the addition of Le Mans winner Romain Dumas and off-road racer Beccy Gordon. Dumas was part of the winning team in the Audi R15 TDI in 2010 and has taken the top spot at the 24 Hours of Spa and the 24 Hours of the Nürburgring in various Porsches. He will tackle the Colorado incline in a Porsche 997 GT3-R.

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Think of it as Mitsubishi's nod to Canada's offbeat sense of humor.

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An attempt by two French engineers to drive a Citroen C-Zero battery-electric vehicle around the world hasn't been lost in translation... yet.

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BMW i, the sub-brand within BMW with its eye towards the future of mobility, has unveiled its third concept, the i8 Spyder. Based on the i8 coupe that debuted last year alongside the i3 city car, the i8 Spyder is at once an obvious followup, but also appears to be a couple of steps closer to the production models that will eventually go on sale to the public.

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BMW i, the sub-brand within BMW with its eye towards the future of mobility, has unveiled its third concept, the i8 Spyder. Based on the i8 coupe that debuted last year alongside the i3 city car, the i8 Spyder is at once an obvious followup, but also appears to be a couple of steps closer to the production models that will eventually go on sale to the public.

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As anyone who's suffered through an extended blackout can tell you, electric power can be a precious commodity. With the advent of electric cars comes the ability to borrow back some of the energy stored in traction batteries to help deal with emergencies or other situations.

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Mitsubishi shipped its first i electric-vehicles dedicated to fleet use to Google and IGO CarSharing this month, as the Japanese automaker looks to boost U.S. sales of the car that's been sold overseas – as the i-MiEV – for years.

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Last month, Toyota pitched its hybrid vehicles at the Chicago Auto Show by partnering with Hasbro to make a Monopoly-inspired road course inside McCormick Center's South Hall.

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Mitsubishi earlier this week shipped its first i electric vehicles to the U.S. East Coast with a delivery of the cars making it to Baltimore. Mitsubishi also reported February sales of 44 i vehicles, up from 36 in January.

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Sending an all-electric vehicle up Pikes Peak is not new – a Nissan Leaf and a custom EV from AC Propulsion made the climb in 2011 – but that shouldn't stop anyone from trying to reach the 14,110-foot height in Colorado better, faster and in a cooler car.

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Sending an all-electric vehicle up Pikes Peak is not new – a Nissan Leaf and a custom EV from AC Propulsion made the climb in 2011 – but that shouldn't stop anyone from trying to reach the 14,110-foot height in Colorado better, faster and in a cooler car.

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Nissan's winter plug-in vehicle sales slump continues, with the Nissan Leaf dropping to just 478 units sold in February, down from 676 in January. This even though overall Nissan North America sales increased by 15.5 percent over last February's numbers. Perhaps, now that the all-electric car is going to be available in all 50 states, the tide will turn.

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For the first time in ages, the Honda Civic Natural Gas is not the "greenest" car in the U.S. This year, it's the Mitsubishi i. At least, it is according to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), which takes it upon itself to rank these sorts of things.

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Imagine you're an auto exec launching a new line of cars. One's a sportscar, the other a city car – pretty much opposite extremes on the spectrum of automotive bodystyles. Do you give them alphanumeric nameplates close to one another? Of course not. You assign them disparate numbers to make room for more models to slot in between.

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The 2012 Mitsubishi i will be available nationwide earlier than once expected, and the first bit of expanded availability can be seen with the delivery of six of the electric vehicles in Normal, IL. These are the first of the little hatchbacks that have made it to the U.S. outside of the vehicle's initial markets of America's West Coast states (excluding Alaska) and Hawaii.

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