Mitsubishi i - 1
 Mitsubishi i - 1
 Mitsubishi i - 2

Mitsubishi wanted to show "Chicagoans the sweeter side of sustainable transportation" this week so it unleashed four all-electric i cars on the streets of the windy city. The super cute fleet was decorated in brightly colored Jelly Belly graphics to mark the opening of Chicago's 2011 Sweets & Snacks Expo, a big deal in the candy industry.

The Mitsubishi i is a 4-person, 100% electric vehicle with zero tailpipe emissions, 140 ft-lb of torque and a top speed of 80 mph. The i can travel approximately 85 miles before it needs to be recharged, and comes with an 8-year or 100,000 mile battery warranty.

The base i ES has a starting price of $27,990. The SE trim level adds 15-inch aluminum wheels, fog lamps and a better sound system. And the top-of-the-line SE Premium includes a navigation system, extra infotainment options and a DC fast-charging port, which recharges the battery to 80 percent capacity in just a half hour.

The best news about the Mitsubishi i (besides being small, stylish and sustainable), is that the starting price after a federal tax credit of $7,500 is just $20,490 (which could be further reduced by state and local incentives). That will make the Mitsubishi i the least expensive all-electric car in the US when it goes on sale early next year.

The all-new Mitsubishi i will be available for test-drives at Mitsubishi dealers beginning this November. As for Jelly Belly, well, they're always available for testing. Flavors include chocolate, super fruits, sours, smoothies and soda pop. And the starting price is extremely affordable.

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Holly Reich writes about cars, travel, lifestyle and more. Her work has been featured in publications that include: Elite Traveler, The New York Daily News, The Washington Post and The Boston Herald. She contributes monthly to Motor Matters syndicate and her blog, "Riffs on Rides," appears on uptownlife.net.

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