Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV - all-wheel drive only when the battery is charged?

[= ””]mein-auto-blog is testing the Mitsubishi Outlander plug-in hybrid in everyday life.

In a Mitsubishi forum, it was alleged that once the Outlander PHEV's battery is empty, it's just a front-wheel drive SUV. The explanation was partly logical: 

The drive train front / rear is not connected - i.e. there is no cardan shaft. So if the batteries are completely empty, this Outlander is only a 2WD with front-wheel drive.

I am surprised that a friend can not answer, because the dealers were informed by press release or could read this in the information material. Quote from: link

The explanation may seem logical, but it is still wrong. To explain more clearly, once again the powertrain of the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV in detail:

Powertrain Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-In Hybrid

Using the Outlander PHEV four-wheel drive? Always possible!

What the bright minds at Mitsubishi in Japan have come up with is nothing less than the most logical and consistent plug-in hybrid powertrain that is currently being sold for an all-wheel drive vehicle. Mitsubishi consistently relies on the efficient electric motors of the Outlander. 82 HP and 137 Nm are available on the front axle and another 82 HP, but 195 Nm, on the rear axle. With this “power distribution” alone, it becomes clear that the idea of ​​all-wheel drive is not a “pro forma” solution at Mitsubishi.

The two electric motors draw their energy from a 12 kWh battery pack, the installation position of which is anchored deep and centrally in the floor of the Mitsubishi Outlander. 12 kWh is the amount of energy with which the electric motors from the pack can be supplied. On the other hand, however, there are “only” 60 kilowatts that the battery pack can send to the motors as power. However, the two electric motors alone provide 60 kW. At maximum acceleration, the 121 hp petrol engine is activated. As long as the PHEV is not traveling faster than 65 km / h, it can have its power converted directly into electricity via a generator placed directly next to the petrol engine. This generator can produce a maximum of 70 kW electrical power. In purely mathematical terms, 130 kW of electrical power are available - that would - in purely mathematical terms - supply both electric motors. But these are paper values. The 70 kW maximum output of the generator (to be compared with a bicycle dynamo) are only "aids".

It always makes more sense not to convert the petrol engine output into electricity, but directly into propulsion. This is why the petrol engine switches directly to the front axle from 65 km / h. This gear step corresponds roughly to a fifth gear. However, since the entire “power” of the gasoline engine is not required even then - the power generator continues to work and charges the battery.

Empty battery?

The control of the battery is much more complex than you might imagine. It's not like a toy car: charge the battery, drive, empty, recharge. The PHEV repeatedly feeds electricity from recuperation and into the batteries via the 70 kW generator. And that is also necessary. Because the petrol engine can only take over the drive directly from 65 km / h, the batteries always need a “residual charge”. The PHEV Outlander ALWAYS starts up electrically. And the PHEV always varies the performance of the electric motors.

Even if the PHEV does not have a rigid mechanical connection between the front and rear axles, logically connected, both electric motors draw power from the battery. The lock-key can be used to define the equal distribution of drive power.

In our long-term test, we were able to try out the “theory” in practice. Both on snow and in the mountains, on gravel, the PHEV has proven that both axles of the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV are driven, even if the battery is theoretically “empty” (remaining kilometer display on “0”).

Endurance Outlander PHEV 11 Plug-in Hybrid Driving Test


More about the “serial and parallel” hybrid drive of the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV! (click)



[= ””]Do You Have Questions? Comments or wishes for our long-term test vehicle? Write us! 



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