Mitsubishi Motors Corporation, (MMC), and the 2012 Mitsubishi i – the all-new North American relative to the i-MiEV 100% electric-powered vehicle (EV) – have taken the top spot on the coveted American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) 14th annual "Greenest Vehicles" list, a comprehensive environmental ranking for production vehicles.
The 2012 Mitsubishi i scored a 58 in the ACEEE's ranking system – the highest Green Score ever achieved since the ACEEE "Greenest Vehicles" rankings began in 1998.
"Even taking into account the emissions generated from the electricity used to power the Mitsubishi i-MiEV, it still handily outscores other vehicles on the market today," said ACEEE Lead Vehicle Analyst, Shruti Vaidyanathan.
According to the ACEEE, the cars that make up their "Greenest Vehicles" list are evaluated on a variety of criteria including tailpipe emissions, fuel consumption, and gas emissions that "contribute to climate change." Additionally, starting with this year's awards, the ACEEE made a number of changes to its vehicle evaluation methodology to more accurately estimate vehicles' environmental impacts including improving emissions estimates in the vehicle manufacturing process as well as in the extraction of natural gas.
"Earning a spot on the 'Greenest' list is proving to be a real challenge for automakers given the variety of technologies on the market and the proliferation of highly efficient conventional vehicles," said Vaidyanathan. "Just using the latest technology does not guarantee a top spot."
The "Greenest Vehicles" and "Greener Choices" lists appear in the ACEEE's Green Book® Online. The Green Book® Online, according to the ACEEE, is an "annual ranking that highlights the environmental friendliness of vehicles in the United States." Only the twelve highest-ranked vehicles by the ACEEE make it onto the organization's "Greenest Vehicles" list.
The 2012 Mitsubishi i is the most affordably-priced mass-produced electric vehicle (EV) available in the United States and is the first of several new advanced, alternative-fuel production vehicles that MMC plans on bringing to the global market in the next few years.