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Old 01-24-2006, 07:18 AM   #1
NYCshopper
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Default Mitsubishi "i" minicar now available in Japan

Mitsubishi "i" minicar now available in Japan



Quote:
New concept for the future of small: Mitsubishi i

Mitsubishi Motors Corporation today launched the new "i" minicar model at Mitsubishi dealerships throughout Japan. Using a newly developed platform with an original rear-midship layout that mounts the engine forward of the rear axle line, the new "i" series includes 2WD and 4WD models with prices ranging from ?1,281,000 to ?1,617,000.

Ushering in a new age for the minicar, "i" was developed as an innovative Premium Small Car that successfully overcomes the tradeoffs traditionally associated with the category: design and comfortable interior space; comfortable interior space and impact safety. Mitsubishi Motors has overcome these challenges by developing a new and innovative rear-midship layout that mounts the engine forward of the rear axle line and spawns three new "innovations" within the category's dimensional constraints: futuristic and uptown styling; agile handling and a comfortable ride; and, excellent multidirectional impact safety.

Powered by a new lightweight and compact 3-cylinder MIVEC turbocharged engine that uses an aluminum cylinder block, "i" earns a 3-star rating for emission levels that are 50% lower than required by Japanese 2005 Emission Regulations and returns fuel consumption that meets Japanese 2010 fuel economy requirements.

"i" also offers a comfortable interior environment. "i"applies Oeko-Tex Standard 100 certified seat fabric, a first among Japanese automakers. Improvement of materials, design and manufacturing processes for interior trim and parts and the use of an deodorant rooflining have reduced volatile organic compounds (VOC) to a level that meets JAMA's voluntary guidelines to reduce cabin VOC concentration levels 15 months before it's the guidelines' introduction.

New rear-midship layout platform:
The new rear-midship platform mounts the engine just forward of the rear axle line. A long wheelbase of 2550 mm, a figure that is on par with the level of a compact car, and a better front/rear weight distribution underpin superior key performance parameters complemented by agile handling, high drivability, a comfortable ride, and stable braking. Providing an effective front crumple zone, the rear-midship layout also realizes a happy marriage between roomier interior space and improved impact safety. And all this wrapped in boldly original styling.

I . " i " : major product features
1. Design
Exterior
Taking its cue from the distinctive one-motion silhouette keynote that capitalizes fully on the rear-midship layout, the design uses the large tires-at-a-corner styling to project apowerful and stable stance. The styling team has crafted lines that work in concert with the front and rear lamps and other geometric elements to project an image that is both intellectual and amiable. "i" is offered in a range of eight body colors that include two new chic and modern choices developed specially for the model: Ginger Brown Metallic and Ash Gray Metallic. Pearl White will also be available in March for a ninth color.

Interior
Benefiting from the large windshield and from the generous living space stemming from the longer wheelbase, the interior enjoys a bright and airy feel. Extensive use is made of soft shapes and surfaces to engender a comforting and reassuring sense of being swaddled within a protective cocoon. Delicate detailing in the driver's instrumentation and center panel gives visual accent to the interior's fun to look at and great to use qualities. M and G trim levels offer a choice of red or dark gray accent coloring in such parts as seats, allowing the owner to coordinate interior and exterior colors to his or her individual preference.

Interior comfort
With no engine at the front which allows the front wheels to be placed as far forward as possible, the rear-midship layout realizes a wheelbase of 2550 mm and luggage space that boast a combined length of 2,075 mm.

2. Driving qualities
New 12-valve DOHC MIVEC intercooler-turbocharged engine with aluminum cylinder block
"i" is powered by a brand-new 3-cylinder engine that mates variable valve timing technology (MIVEC) on the intake valvetrain with an intercooler-turbocharger "i" earns a 3-star rating for emission levels that are 50% lower than required by Japanese 2005 Emission Regulations and returns fuel consumption that meets Japanese 2010 fuel economy standards.
Using an aluminum cylinder block and resin intake manifold, the new engine was made lighter and more compact. An electronic throttle delivers silky-smooth acceleration despite the engine's turbocharged specification. Also, a higher overall engine stiffness and the use of a silent timing chain contributes to quieter and smoother operation for category-eclipsing levels of comfort.

New suspension
"i" uses MacPherson struts at the front and a 3-link De Dion suspension at the rear. The absence of the engine at the front has allowed the engineers to optimize the front suspension configuration and stroke. This and the longer wheelbase combine to deliver well-balanced and well-mannered handling with a classy, smooth ride and rock-steady straight-line stability. The rear-midship layout also allows a larger wheel turn angle to give "i" a 4.5 m minimum turning radius on a par with the eK series despite its longer wheelbase.

15-inch large tires
"i" rides on 15-inch tires but uses different treadwidths and profiles front and rear: 145/65R15 at the front and 175/55R15 at the rear. Accommodating the higher load on the rear driving wheels, the wider rear tires provide more grip for confidence-inspiring stability together with agile handling and control.

3. Safety
Multidirectional impact safety body
The rear-midship layout allows a generous front crumple zone as well as providing roomier interior space. "i" sits on a frame structure that delivers much improved multidirectional impact safety. Large-section straight side rails running the length of the body absorb and diffuse impact energy in a frontal crash. Strong cross members linking the straight rails effectively absorb side impact energy while the floor and engine act in concert to absorb and diffuse rear end impact energy. Also, the space freed up under the hood by the rear-midship layout and the use of an energy-absorbing wiper pivot reduce impact energy transmission in the event of a collision with a pedestrian.

4. Comfort and convenience appointments / Utility
In-car entertainment / Navigation
Standard on all G and M trim levels, a CD player with AM/FM tuner sports an exclusive panel design that makes it appear an integral part of the dashboard. In a pleasingly clean design, the ergonomic layout of the control panel puts a large volume/tuning dial and other switches within easy reach.
A 7-inch wide display HDD on-board navigation system is available as a factory-fitted option.

Small item storage / Luggage compartment
"i" provides generous small item storage that combines function with design as seen in the front passenger glove compartment, Secret box and in the pull-out cup holders. In a simple operation, the 50:50 split rear seatbacks fold forward and down at the pull of a lever to create a flat and roomy luggage compartment.

Clean and comfortable interior environment
"i" realizes a clean and pleasantly comfortable interior environment. The full-automatic climate control system standard on all models uses a clean air filter with deodorizing function. The clean air filter works with the deodorant rooflining to remove cigarette and body odors and also to reduce volatile organic compound (VOC) levels. G and M trim levels use a solar control glass windshield that cuts transmission of ultra-violet and infra-red radiation.

II . Sales information
1. Monthly sales target: 5,000 units










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Old 01-24-2006, 10:47 AM   #2
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Other car companies have been showing concept cars like these for years now, so I give Mitsu a lot of credit for actually bringing one to production.
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Old 01-24-2006, 12:07 PM   #3
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This is the next VW Beetle. It may not ever be as popular, but it's the closest thing to the people's car (in concept, if not execution) than I've seen in a while.

Interesting rear suspension choice. I thought for a second that this is where PT Cruiser parts had gone.
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Old 01-24-2006, 03:11 PM   #4
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economical but ugly.
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Old 01-24-2006, 04:17 PM   #5
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with the mid engine layout it has the potential to be a very fun econo-box.

this layout could also favor a boxer motor.
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Old 01-24-2006, 04:19 PM   #6
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Can you imagine a 350whp EVO engine in that thing?
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Old 01-24-2006, 04:24 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Migo
Can you imagine a 350whp EVO engine in that thing?
yea, well except that that would take up the entire interior of it - you'd have to sit on the roof.
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Old 01-24-2006, 04:26 PM   #8
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But IMAGINE it!
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Old 01-24-2006, 07:44 PM   #9
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working on the engine must be a bitch
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Old 01-25-2006, 06:12 PM   #10
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stats for the i from conceptcarz

2005 Mitsubishi i
Year 2005
Make Mitsubishi
Model i
Engine Location Rear

Engine
Engine Configuration I
Cylinders 3
Engine MIVEC
Aspiration/Induction Turbocharged
Intercooler
Horsepower 47.00 kw (63.9 HP)

Dimensions
Seating Capacity 4
Doors 4
Exterior
Wheelbase 2550.001 mm | 100.4 in.
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Old 01-25-2006, 06:57 PM   #11
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i like! what is the market for cars of this type though?
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Old 01-25-2006, 07:11 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WingNut
i like! what is the market for cars of this type though?

didnt say
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Old 01-25-2006, 07:14 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yammy1688
working on the engine must be a bitch
I was thinking the same thing.

Must be weird having your feet about 6 inches from the front bumper too. Dunno how I'd like that in a crash. Ouch.
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Old 01-25-2006, 07:55 PM   #14
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I dunno, looks like a couple of bolts and the whole thing drops down. Easier than a Boxter. You ever look at the engine bay of a Taurus SHO? True, this is a much cheaper car, but most major work is done in dealer repair shops, and it can be easier to just drop the drivetrain.

Also, I think Japan allows for lower crash standards on these size vehicles. Thinking that they don't typically go that fast, more of an in-city kind of thing.
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Old 01-25-2006, 08:02 PM   #15
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i guess the subaru r1 and the r2 in japan are going to have some competition
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Old 01-25-2006, 09:28 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Migo
Can you imagine a 350whp EVO engine in that thing?
Can you imagine it not fitting?
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Old 01-25-2006, 09:29 PM   #17
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o and the evo is 280 hp not 350

280 stock for the normal and the other version
2005 Mitsubishi Evo VIII FQ400 is 400 hp stock;p
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Old 01-25-2006, 10:02 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lmp tuning
Can you imagine it not fitting?
i assume you know this because you have detailed measurements of the engine bay?

he said whp, wheel horse power. obviously referring to a modded evo motor.

almost any motor can fit in any car with the right amount of effort.
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Old 01-26-2006, 10:12 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SUBE555
I was thinking the same thing.

Must be weird having your feet about 6 inches from the front bumper too. Dunno how I'd like that in a crash. Ouch.
Worked just fine for the VW Vanagon. The floor is very stout, and designed to channel the energy around the driver. They performed surprisingly well in crash tests. The problem w/ the Vanagon is that it weighs 4000lbs so it usually does more damage to whatever it hits. I don't think the 'i' will cause as much damage.

BTW, the view from a forward seating position like that is great.

<--- *has an '84 Westfalia in the driveway *
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