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Mitsubishi prepares Outlander PHEV for Australasian Safari

Team Mitsubishi Ralliart has announced its Outlander PHEV will run ‘mine industry’ rated tyres during the 2014 Australasian Safari which kicks off today (19 September).

TEAM MITSUBISHI RALLIART Australia (TMR Australia) will run Toyo-supplied “severe service” tyres (M55) on its race-prepared Outlander PHEV when it competes in the 2014 Australasian Safari which kicks off today until 27 September. The TMR Outlander PHEV is the first time a plug-in hybrid four-wheel drive vehicle has entered an Australian motorsport event.

The Australasian Safari covers 2500km and sees competitors tackle a variety of outback terrain, from sand, desert tracks, salt plains and dry river beds. TMR Australia said it chose the M55 tyre because of its “durability and puncture resistance”.

“The M55 is Toyo’s ‘severe service’ all-terrain tyre,” said Steve Burke, Toyo Tires Australia technical advisor. “The tyre’s tread compound and construction is designed for harsh conditions both on and off-road – especially in rocky conditions, where tread damage from sharp rocks is common.

“The tyre is a proven product in the mining industry, where the M55’s exceptional resistance to punctures is well known.”

The TMR Outlander PHEV will be driven by notable rally driver Steve Glenney and co-driver Bernie Webb and will compete in a production category designed specifically for electric and hybrid vehicles – P1.6. TMR Australia Outlander PHEV Safari team principal Alan Heaphy said that the Australasian Safari is an event that requires endurance and performance from every element of a car, not least the tyres.

“We are focused on proving the Outlander PHEV’s durability in genuine off-road conditions, and the Toyo M55 is the ideal tyre for the task,” he said.

“The PHEV showcases the latest Mitsubishi hybrid and four-wheel drive technology, making it an ideal platform for an entry in the Australasian Safari. We can’t afford a puncture, and the Toyos give us the peace of mind to push harder.

“We talk about racing in tough conditions, but when you boil it down the tyres are the part of the car taking the hardest beating. With the M55, it looks like we have found a tyre that turns the tables on any would-be obstacles,” Mr Heaphy said.

The Australasian Safari launches from the Wanneroo Showgrounds on 19 September and finishes at Kalbarri on 27 September.

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Alex Martini
9 years ago

Let’s hope it goes well! This is the only hybrid that I really like (918 aside)

9 years ago

Absolutely Alex. We’ll keep you in the loop as to how it goes. And, yes, a 918 hybrid would be very nice indeed.

Adam Howley
Adam Howley
9 years ago

Interesting idea. I guess the regenerative braking will come in handy when you just take your foot of the accelerator. Will be also interesting to see how well it grips on gravel/loose surface.

Isaac Bober

Isaac Bober