In years past, the spectacular Pike's Peak event was a carbon speedfest, with mighty, high-revving racing engines propelling competitors to the top of the 4260 metre climb.
In 2011, Nissan broke that tradition by powering up the hill with a special version of its LEAF electric vehicle. In 2012, Mitsubishi will attempt the same feat, in a modified version of its electric i-MiEV.
Looking like a cross between the plastic motorbike-engined Aussie Racecars and a Le Mans sports car, the i-MiEV will tackle the course made famous by Ari Vatanen's incredible run in the Peugeot 405.
In the hands of twice Dakar winner Hiroshi Masuoka, the i-MiEV's Pike's Peak adventure is intended to collect data to "enhance the durability and reliability of pure EVs and plug-in hybrid EVs which it will be bringing to market in the near future".
The i-MiEV will apparently use the same components as the roadgoing version - although as the picture clearly shows, the body is a spectacular departure, with huge front and rear splitters to help keep the little EV from spearing off the side of the road.
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