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Mitsubishi powers up

Auto maker teams with Best Buy and Eaton to build electric vehicle charging infrastructure


November 18, 2010
by Fleet Management staff

Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc., (MMNA), Best Buy Co., Inc., and power management company, Eaton Corporation, will collaborate to help facilitate and enhance electric vehicle ownership for the automotive consumer.

For residential electric vehicle customers, Best Buy’s Geek Squad will provide site analysis and work to manage electrical home infrastructural upgrading and installation by licensed electrical contractors of Eaton’s advanced Level 2 (220V) charging hardware for Mitsubishi’s “i” powered by MiEV electric vehicle, which goes on sale in the fall of 2011.

In addition, Eaton will provide both the electrical infrastructural support and Level 2 chargers to MMNA’s dealerships. These 220V (15A) charging stations can be installed in a home’s garage and help reduce the charging time of Mitsubishi’s lithium-ion battery-powered vehicle by 50 percent versus a standard 110V electrical outlet. Given its battery size, Mitsubishi “i” customers can have the choice of only applying existing Level 1 (110V outlet) equipment, or the faster Level 2 charging which can affect a complete charge in about seven hours.

Best Buy, through the company’s Geek Squad–a 24-hour task force of more than 20,000 technicians–will perform site analysis and is working to install the Level 2 Charging Station equipment designed and manufactured by Eaton Corporation. Along with the Charging Station analysis, Geek Squad can also offer consumers a home energy survey to determine current power consumption and potential areas where savings may be found.

Best Buy’s Geek Squad is already familiar with the Mitsubishi “i” as its task force has been utilizing several of the all-electric vehicles in its mobile fleet since November 2009 in a test run with the Japanese automobile manufacturer.

Eaton will design and manufacture the Level 2 Charging Station equipment that will be sold and distributed by Best Buy retailers to support Mitsubishi Motors customers and dealerships. Eaton has been developing innovative hybrid and electrical power systems (including electric vehicle charging infrastructure) for commercial vehicles for more than 20 years.