Mitsubishi's Concept PX-MiEV is another addition to the
company's MiEV concept hybrid vehicle range. The concept
went on display for the first time at the 2009 Tokyo Motor
The exterior styling of the PX-MiEV is not that interesting,
but at least it sticks to the design brief of something
that is "solid, safe and simple". Mitsubishi
wanted a vehicle which eschewed all the usual rugged features
of typical SUVs, and instead had basic and simple uncluttered
lines. The silver paint was specially developed for the
vehicle and is designed to give the car a metal shell-like
Thankfully despite the dull exterior styling the Mitsubishi
Concept PX-MiEV has some interesting technology underneath.
The PX-MiEV has a plug-in hybrid drivetrain which uses
two electric motors and a 1.6 litre MIVEC internal combustion
engine. The Mitsubishi Concept PX-MiEV also utilizes the
MiEV OS (MiEV Operating System) which selects the optimum
drive mode at all times.
The different drive modes of the Concept PX-Miev include:
Full Electric Mode: At low to middle vehicle speeds
the Mitsubishi Concept PX-MiEVs drive battery powers
the front motor using front-wheel drive. When driving
on snow, in the rain or in other low surface friction
situations where maximum vehicle stability is required,
the system automatically switches to four-wheel drive
mode by feeding power to the rear wheel motor as well
when sensors detect any front wheel slip.
Series Hybrid Mode: When the remaining energy in
the drive battery falls to a predetermined level the system
starts the gasoline engine to generate electricity and
automatically switches to the series hybrid mode using
the electricity generated to power the motors. In this
mode as well, the system switches to four-wheel drive
by driving the rear motor depending on driving conditions.
Parallel Hybrid Mode: At higher vehicle speeds
the car is supported by the gasoline engine which operates
more efficiently than the electric motors at high revolutions.
In this mode, the gasoline engine also helps drive the
wheels. When the driver makes sudden lane changes or other
maneuvers requiring greater vehicle stability the system
switches to four-wheel drive by bringing in the rear motor
to drive the rear wheels, improving stability. In addition
when overtaking at higher speeds or in other situations
requiring faster acceleration the system switches in both
front and rear motors to provide additional power and
assist the gasoline engine, providing high acceleration.
Regenerative Mode: When the vehicle is slowing
or coasting down a long descending slope the system switches
to regenerative mode in which kinetic energy reclaimed
from the wheels is stored in the drive battery.
The interior of the Mitsubishi PX-MiEV features the company's
peculiarly named 'cocochi-interior' design. This system
is designed to offer the occupants a "Clean, Stress-free
and Safe & Reassuring" environment, but why
Mitsubishi have to give their interior design a stupid
name is beyond me.
The seat coverings have a special fabric which is designed
to deactivate allergens, break down offensive odor molecules,
and kill bacteria.
In order to cut down on electrical power consumption the
interior of the PX-MiEV is protected by heat and infrared
reflecting glass which helps keep the interior cool and
reduce the need for air-conditioning.