Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) entered two MiEV Evolution III all-electric racecars, which combine the best of MMC's electric vehicle (EV) and four-wheel drive control technologies, in the Electric Modified Division of the 2014 edition of the world-famous Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (Pikes Peak, June 23 to June 29) in Colorado, United States.
Race Day was held on Sunday June 29 and after posting the fastest time of 9 minutes 08 seconds 188, Greg Tracy won the Electric Modified Division honors and 2nd overall. Meanwhile, Hiroshi Masuoka set a time of 9 minutes 12 seconds 204, finishing 2nd in the division and 3rd overall, dominating the Electric Modified Division. These Race Day results and the performance of the cars during the event speak volumes about the advanced level of MMC’s EV and four-wheel drive control technologies.
The race starts at an elevation of 2,862 meters and takes competitors through 156 corners on a 20 km course to the finish on the 4,301 meter summit of Pikes Peak. With an elevation difference of 1,439 meters, atmospheric pressure, temperature, weather and other conditions vary significantly between the start and finish. A feature of the race course is that it is split into three major sections: Bottom at the foot of the mountain, Middle and then Upper near the summit.
Lined by coniferous trees, the Bottom section starts with its rhythmical series of mid- to high-speed corners but all of a sudden the drivers hit a series of much tighter and difficult turns which demand the utmost care and concentration.
The Middle section is distinguished by some spectacular scenery with oddly-shaped rocks closely bordering the road. This is a very technical section as shortly after the start a series of tight hairpin bends demand precise handling as the car races along the steeply ascending road.
The Upper section is a very high-speed course taking competitors through many fast corners between craggy rocks and boulders. With little guard railing at the side of the road, this very difficult section brings with it the risk of plunging over the edge should the car slide off the tarmac. This is why the highest levels of vehicle stability are required over the high-speed parts of the section. At 4,301 meters, the mountain summit is higher than Mt. Fuji and the thin air means that cars powered by internal combustion engines lose power the higher up they go. Electrically powered cars, however, are unaffected by the thin air and so this could prove the key section in setting a really fast overall race time.
|1||Greg Tracy||MiEV Evolution III||9:08.188|
|2||Hiroshi Masuoka||MiEV Evolution III||9:12.204|
|3||Tajima Nobuhiro||E-RUNNER Pikes Peak Special||9:43.900|
|5||Janis Horeliks||2014 Tesla Roadster 360||12:57.536|