Brazil: Mitsubishi Pajero TR4 Flex to launch in July

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Ethanol-friendly Brazil is getting a new flex-fuel SUV from Mitsubishi. The locally-built Pajero TR4 Flex is a 4WD SUV derived from the also-Brazilian-built Pajero TR4. Unlike its standard sibling, the TR4 Flex's 2.0-liter four can run on any combination of gasoline and ethanol. ECU mods allow for optimum combustion regardless of said fuel mixture, and it pumps out 133 horsepower whether its running on gasoline only or on E100 (no numbers were provided for in-between mixes). When running on 100 percent ethanol, the engine also generates a slightly greater amount of torque. The Pajero TR4 Flex goes on sale in Brazil next month, and Mitsubishi is still targeting FY 2009 for the release of a FFV in the US.

Press release after the jump.

[Source: Mitsubishi]
Mitsubishi Motors launches flex-fuel vehicle (FFV) in Brazil
- New Pajero TR4 Flex developed from Pajero TR4 -

Tokyo, June 21, 2007- Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) and local production and sales company MMC Automotores do Brasil Ltda (MMCB) today announced the development of the first full-feature four-wheel drive flex-fuel vehicle (FFV) to be released in the Brazilian market. The vehicle, called the Pajero TR4 Flex, will be launched in July of this year.

Derived from the Pajero TR4 currently assembled and sold by MMCB, the Pajero TR4 Flex features several modifications. These include the use of different materials, modifications to the engine, and changes to the fuel system that allow the vehicle to run on any combination of gasoline and ethanol. Modifications to the engine control unit allow for optimum combustion with any fuel mixture, and the redesigned parts of the fuel delivery system add toughness and dependability.

The 2.0-liter 16-valve engine that powers the Pajero TR4 Flex delivers similar levels of performance on ethanol-heavy or gasoline-heavy fuel mixes. Running on 100% gasoline it develops 98kW (133ps) and 177N・m (18 kg・m) of torque; on 100% ethanol it develops 99kW (133 ps) and 186N・m (19 kg・m) of torque.

MMC is currently pushing forward development of FFV as part of its response to the global trend towards alternative fuel sources. The company is also currently working on a flex-fuel model it plans to bring into commercial production for the U.S. market in fiscal 2009.

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