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Last year, Mitsubishi took on the challenge of competing in the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb for the first time, doing so with two all-electric cars, a 49 kW production i-MiEV driven by Beccy Gordon and a 240 kW i-MiEV Evolution steered by two-time Dakar Rally winner Hiroshi Masuoka.

For 2013, the automaker is back to race up the hill with what is the progression of the i-MiEV Evolution – the MiEV Evolution II, as it’s known as, is an all-electric prototype upgraded with lessons learnt from last year’s outing.

The i-MiEV Evolution finished second in the Electric Division, and the company says that participation in the event brought a rich harvest in terms of vehicle speed, acceleration and other on-road data, as well as drive battery consumption, motor temperature and other data and know-how critical to electric vehicle development.

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Like last year’s car, the MiEV Evolution II uses parts used in production vehicles, combined with a high-capacity battery and high-output motors, both specially designed by the automaker’s suppliers.

Based on experience gained from last year’s race, Mitsubishi has added a S-AWC (Super All-Wheel Control) integrated vehicle dynamics control system to a two-front/two-rear four-motor drivetrain for increased handling and control in the new car. These, together with a specially-designed body that provides reduced weight and improved aerodynamics, has resulted in a significant improvement in driving dynamics.

The two i-MiEV Evolution racecars will be piloted by Masuoka and six-time Pikes Peak motorcycle champion Greg Tracy.