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USA: 2012 Mitsubishi i: First Drive, U.S.-Spec MiEV

The Mitsubishi MiEV went on sale in Japan and Europe back in mid-2009, and it’s sold 11,000 of them in those markets combined, since then; and including those rebadged as Peugeot and Citroen models, it adds up to about 15,000 in all. And that’s about, as of last month, the same number of Nissan Leafs sold worldwide.

Among pure electric cars, Mitsubishi’s lead might have slipped away, but it does have one very significant claim: The 2012 Mitsubishi i (what it’s called here) is the most efficient DOT-legal vehicle for sale in the U.S. market, with an official MPGe (miles per gallon equivalent) rating of 112.

That’s right; the MiEV is finally officially U.S.-legal, with first deliveries slated for late November. And in Portland, Oregon, we recently got the chance to drive a couple of the first pre-production U.S.-spec cars to be shipped over.
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