This week I got to drive one of the first two Mitsubishi i MiEV plug-in electric cars in the UK. Like most electric passenger vehicles it is a sharp mover and a sharp stopper too as the regenerative braking kicks in, charging the batteries again.

According to Mitsubishi, its range is 100 miles on a full charge and its carbon emissions are about 30% of a petrol equivalent (presumably using the carbon intensity of Japanese electricity as a guide). A quick charge will take it to 80% of battery capacity in 30 minutes, but a full standard charge takes 7 hours.

This is quite a breakthrough - an electric car that you could imagine being seen (but not heard) in. The range would be a bit limiting for me - I'd like to see an extra 50 miles there as I often do a 80-100 mile round trip to clients on Teesside and I would want a bit of headroom in case of traffic problems etc. Tesla, makers of the impressive electric sports car, are working on a 300 mile saloon, which would be brilliant.

It is clear that electric cars are starting to evolve quickly and it will be very interesting to see how quickly they become a mainstream choice.

Be Sociable, Share!