Mitsubishi Will Loan Illinois Electric Vehicles For Test-Driving

NORMAL, Ill. (AP) — Mitsubishi Motors North America says it will loan the state of Illinois what it called "a limited number" of battery-powered electric vehicles to try out as part of the state's fleet.

Mitsubishi Motors North America made the announcement Friday while company President Shinichi Kurihara was in Normal to announce plans for production of the new Outlander Sport SUV crossover at the facility.

Mitsubishi loaned the state of California two of its electric i MiEV vehicles last year for fleet testing.

The company says it also will work with Illinois to find ways to increase the use of electric vehicles in Illinois.

Mitsubishi employs 1,300 people at the plant in Normal. It plans to start building the new SUV next year to replace four existing models being phased out.