Mitsubishi’s Outlander PHEV Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle has successfully completed the gruelling 2015 FIA Asia Cross Country Rally (AXCR).
Operated by Two & Four Motor Sports rally team with technical support from Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC), the team covered 2,400 km of competitive kilometres in 40 hours 1 minute and 51 seconds to take first place in the T1-3 electric vehicle class, and 20th place overall.
The Outlander PHEV has now successfully finished the Asia Cross Country Rally three years in a row, proving the reliability, durability and all-terrain performance of the Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) under severe road conditions.
Result Breakdown by Race Leg
Leg 1 (August 9) – After the first day of full competition the Outlander PHEV placed 17th overall after successfully forging several wide and deep river crossings.
Leg 2 (August 10) – The second leg took competitors over the longest and most mountainous stage of the rally with many sharp changes in elevation. After suffering a broken windshield the Outlander PHEV was forced to miss the latter half of the stage and dropped to 25th place overall.
Leg 3 (August 11) – Competitors were driving over relatively flat and dry roads and the Outlander PHEV’s electric motor-powered acceleration and its S-AWC integrated vehicle control system helped it to climb up to 22nd place.
Leg 4 (August 12) and Leg 5 (August 13) – The Outlander PHEV steadily improves its position and moves up to 20th place at the end of Leg 5.
Leg 6 (August 14) – On the final stage, the Outlander PHEV posted the third fastest time over a relatively flat course, taking crossing the finish line in 20th place overall.
Technical Director, Yasuo Tanaka
“Surface conditions were tougher than expected, however, the rally car showed plenty of endurance and performance,” said Mr Tanaka
“The motor, generator, battery and other EV components made it through the rally with no issues, further proving the systems reliability and durability.
“Thanks to the valuable data gathered from the Asia Cross Country Rally, we will complete a much better rally car and aim for a higher placing at the Baja Portalegre in October.”
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV rally car
The competition car uses the Outlander PHEV production model drive battery – which forms the heart of the plug-in hybrid SUV – but with modifications to its structure to achieve greater capacity and output.
The control system governing the motors has been modified to deliver a higher output, while the generator and engine – which supply power to the battery and motors – have been modified to increase power output and boost overall system performance.
Off-road performance has been improved in order to take full advantage of the upgraded PHEV system. Changes include a higher ground clearance and longer suspension stroke together with larger diameter rally tires to enhance the Outlander PHEV’s performance limits.
The data Mitsubishi Motors gathers during the event is considered highly valuable and will be fed back into development of future production cars.
Baja Portalegre 500
MMC will be entering a similarly-modified Outlander PHEV rally car in the Baja Portalegre 500 cross country held in Portalegre municipality in eastern Portugal from October 22-24.
The car will be driven, and team captained, by Hiroshi Masuoka who posted successive victories in the Dakar Rally 2002 and 2003. Technical support will be supplied by team manager and technical director Mr Yasuo Tanaka from MMC’s EV Component Research Department, Development Engineering Office.
About Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
On sale in Australia since March 2014, the Outlander PHEV is the first of a new generation of Mitsubishi products to feature its advanced Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) propulsion system.
This ground-breaking technology gives the Outlander PHEV an official fuel consumption of 1.9 litres/100km* and 52 kilometre** electric range. With its spacious five seat interior, medium-sized SUV practicality, four-wheel drive capability and starting price of just $47,490 recommended retail, the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV heralds a new era of affordable, user-friendly electric cars.
* Based on the official ADR 81/02 combined fuel consumption test cycle
** Based on official ADR 81/02 testing