Published on July 7th, 2014 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Pikes Peak Hill Climb 2014 MiEV Evolution III Wins Electric Modified Division Honors
Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) entered two MiEV Evolution III all-electric race cars, which combine the best of MMC’s electric vehicle (EV) and four-wheel drive control technologies, in the Electric Modified Division of the 2014 edition of the world-famous Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (Pikes Peak, June 23 to June 29) in Colorado, United States. Race Day was held on Sunday June 29 and after posting the fastest time of 9 minutes 08 seconds 188, Greg Tracy won the Electric Modified Division honors and 2nd overall.
Meanwhile, Hiroshi Masuoka set a time of 9 minutes 12 seconds 204, finishing 2nd in the division and 3rd overall, dominating the Electric Modified Division. These Race Day results and the performance of the cars during the event speak volumes about the advanced level of MMC’s EV and four-wheel drive control technologies.
- Greg Tracy’s comment
“I am extremely happy to be able to deliver this Electric Modified class victory to Mitsubishi Motors. This win means that I am a winner both in two-wheel and in four-wheel vehicles, transitioning towards four wheels was because I really wanted to race with an electric vehicle. The Mitsubishi Motors team prepared a fantastic race car for me. I want to thank the team and also Masuoka-san who helped to develop this phenomenal race car to capture this win. This victory is truly a team effort. The road surface condition today was rather slippery but the S-AWC had eliminated any unnecessary drift of the car, and I was able to attack turns all the way to the top with full confidence. One thing that I am disappointed about from my run is that I was a little too aggressive under the braking in some turns. Therefore, the brakes started to fade a little bit towards the end, and due to pounding from hard braking, I think I lost some time at the top. I am a bit gutted since if it wasn’t for this, I think we really had a good shot at winning the overall as well. With that said, I am really proud to be able to deliver the victory in the Electric Modified Division to Mitsubishi Motors driving the MiEV Evolution III.
- Hiroshi Masuoka’s comment
“First of all, I would like to congratulate Greg on winning the Electric Modified class. He drove the MiEV Evolution III spectacularly and definitely deserves this win. As a teammate and as a team partner, I could not have been happier for this result. The weather was picture clear today and without any concern with the rain coming in, so I was able to drive aggressively all the way to the summit. If I was to rate to my driving today, I would say it was about 95 points out of 100. I could not deliver a win but I am proud to be able to assist on a one-two finish for the team. As we competed in Pikes Peak for three years with an electric vehicle, we were able to develop an advanced racing machine while learning further about high-level technologies. Additionally, we were able to see the young and upcoming engineers mature through this program. I am pretty sure that the data and experience garnered through this Pikes Peak participation will bring extreme value as we further develop the electric and plug-in hybrid vehicle technologies in the future.
- The Race: Pikes Peak International Hill Climb
The race starts at an elevation of 2,862 meters and takes competitors through 156 corners on a 20 km course to the finish on the 4,301 meter summit of Pikes Peak. With an elevation difference of 1,439 meters, atmospheric pressure, temperature, weather and other conditions vary significantly between the start and finish. A feature of the race course is that it is split into three major sections: Bottom at the foot of the mountain, Middle and then Upper near the summit.
Lined by coniferous trees, the Bottom section starts with its rhythmical series of mid- to high-speed corners but all of a sudden the drivers hit a series of much tighter and difficult turns which demand the utmost care and concentration.
The Middle section is distinguished by some spectacular scenery with oddly-shaped rocks closely bordering the road. This is a very technical section as shortly after the start a series of tight hairpin bends demand precise handling as the car races along the steeply ascending road.
The Upper section is a very high-speed course taking competitors through many fast corners between craggy rocks and boulders. With little guard railing at the side of the road, this very difficult section brings with it the risk of plunging over the edge should the car slide off the tarmac. This is why the highest levels of vehicle stability are required over the high-speed parts of the section. At 4,301 meters, the mountain summit is higher than Mt. Fuji and the thin air means that cars powered by internal combustion engines lose power the higher up they go. Electrically powered cars, however, are unaffected by the thin air and so this could prove the key section in setting a really fast overall race time.