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2021 Mitsubishi Mirage is inexpensive, the most fuel-efficient non-hybrid car you can buy

The 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage is one of the least expensive cars you can buy.

Photo courtesy of Mitsubishi Motors

If you think really hard o it, you're probably able to name some of the least expensive vehicles sold in the U.S. Spoiler alert: they're all cars. While SUVs start around $18,000 in the U.S., the cheapest car, the 2021 Chevrolet Spark has a starting MSRP of $13,400 and an additional $995 delivery charge. And, while it may be the cheapest, it's nowhere near the most fuel efficient.

That honor sits with the 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage. The Mirage is powered by a 1.2-liter three-cylinder engine that produces 78 horsepower and 74 pound-feet of torque. Buyers can get that engine paired with either a five-speed manual transmission or a continuously variable (CVT) transmission. Either way, the Mirage's powertrain gets an EPA-estimated 36 mpg in the city, 43 mpg on the highway, and 39 mpg combined.

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage and Mirage G4

Photo courtesy of Mitsubishi Motors

Those numbers are far better than the Spark's 33 mpg combined. To its credit, the Spark has a slightly larger engine (a 1.4-liter) and offers 20 more horsepower.

The Mitsubishi Mirage and Mirage G4 (the hatchback version) were both given a refresh for the 2021 model year. Mitsubishi will sell each model in four trim levels: ES, LE, Carbonite Edition (CE), and SE.

Up front, both models got Mitsubishi's latest Dynamic Shield grille design and a revised front bumper that's meant to give it a sense of sportiness. Out back, the Mirage's bumper and valance increased in size while the standard L-shaped horizontal taillights now stretch across the backside of the car. The overall aesthetic is in keeping with the newest designs in Mitsubishi's SUV lineup.

Mitsubishi will offer the Mirage and Mirage G4 in two new exterior paint colors for the new model year, White Diamond. A Sand Yellow finish is newly available just for the hatchback.

The car comes standard with a 7-inch infotainment touch screen with Apple CarPla and Android Auto compatibility. Buyers who opt for the Mirage ES get redesigned front arm rests, new soft-touch cloth in high-touch areas, and a carbon fiber effect on the vehicle's power window switch trim.

Every Mirage now comes with forward collision mitigation technnology with pedestrians detection. Lane departure warning and automatic high beams are available on the top-tier SE trim level.

The new 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Carbonite Edition features a revised front grille and air dam, side air dam, b-pillar decal and rear airdam with carbon-pattern surfaces and contrasting red accents. It's available in either a sedan or hatchback body style. The model is slotted just below the top SE grade.

Every Mirage comes with a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain limited warranty; 5-year/60,000-mile new vehicle limited warranty; 7-year/100,000-mile anti-corrosion/perforation limited warranty; and 5-year/unlimited mileage roadside assistance program.

Pricing for the 2021 Mirage tops out at $17,445. The Mirage G4 starts at $15,295 and goes up to $18,195.

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Domino's and Nuro announced their partnership in 2019 — and now the robots are hitting the roads.

Photo courtesy of Nuro

After announcing their partnership to work on pizza deliveries via self-driving robots in 2019, Dominos and Nuro have officially rolled out their technology to one part of town.

Beginning this week, if you place a prepaid order from Domino's in Woodland Heights (3209 Houston Ave.), you might have the option to have one of Nuro's R2 robot come to your door. This vehicle is the first do deliver completely autonomously without occupants with a regulatory approval by the U.S. Department of Transportation, according to a news release.

"We're excited to continue innovating the delivery experience for Domino's customers by testing autonomous delivery with Nuro in Houston," says Dennis Maloney, Domino's senior vice president and chief innovation officer, in the release. "There is still so much for our brand to learn about the autonomous delivery space. This program will allow us to better understand how customers respond to the deliveries, how they interact with the robot and how it affects store operations."

Orders placed at select dates and times will have the option to be delivered autonomously. Photo courtesy of Nuro

Nuro Domino's delivery vehicle

The Nuro deliveries will be available on select days and times, and users will be able to opt for the autonomous deliveries when they make their prepaid orders online. They will then receive a code via text message to use on the robot to open the hatch to retrieve their order.

"Nuro's mission is to better everyday life through robotics. Now, for the first time, we're launching real world, autonomous deliveries with R2 and Domino's," says Dave Ferguson, Nuro co-founder and president, in the release. "We're excited to introduce our autonomous delivery bots to a select set of Domino's customers in Houston. We can't wait to see what they think."

California-based Nuro has launched a few delivery pilots in Houston over the past few years, including the first Nuro pilot program with Kroger in March 2019, grocery delivery from Walmart that was revealed in December 2019, and pharmacy delivery that launched last summer.

From being located in a state open to rolling out new AV regulations to Houston's diversity — both in its inhabitants to its roadways, the Bayou City stood out to Nuro, says Sola Lawal, product operations manager at Nuro.

"As a company, we tried to find a city that would allow us to test a number of different things to figure out what really works and who it works for," Lawal says on an episode of the Houston Innovators Podcast. "It's hard to find cities that are better than Houston at enabling that level of testing."

You can find out which self-driving vehicles are being tested in your neck of the woods by clicking here.


This article first appeared on AutomotiveMap's sister site InnovationMap.

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The 2021 Volkswagen ID.4 is on sale now.

Photo courtesy of Volkswagen AG
The all-electric range of the 2021 Volkswagen ID.4 has been confirmed. The model is the first modern electric Volkswagen to be sold in the U.S. and a model that the German automaker is resting a lot of hopes on for the future of sales in the country.

The 2021 Volkswagen ID.4 Pro with all-wheel drive will achieve an EPA-estimated 260 miles of all-electric range on a full charge. The ID.4 Pro S and 1st Edition, which have more features and equipment and therefore weigh more, achieve an estimated 250 miles of range.

The EPA-estimated fuel economy for ID.4 Pro RWD is 107 MPGe in the city; 91 MPGe on the highway, and 99 MPGe combined. The ID.4 Pro S and 1st Edition does slightly worse achieving 104 MPGe in the city, 89 MPGe on the highway, and 97 MPGe combined.

2021 Volkswagen ID.4: Exterior The "1st" badging denotes the vehicle as a first edition model. Photo courtesy of Volkswagen AG

These new numbers come as part of a second round of EPA testing. Original testing found that the model did not quite hit its target.

How does that compare to other EVs? The Nissan Leaf Plus offers 226 miles of all-electric power. The Hyundai Kona Electric delivers 258 miles. Volvo's XC40 Recharge has just 208 miles of all-electric range but the Tesla Model Y can go up to 326 miles on one full charge.

First out of the Volkswagen gate will be ID.4 models with an 82-kilowatt-hour battery and rear-mounted AC permanent-magnet synchronous motor. That system delivers 201 horsepower and 228 pound-feet of torque.

At a public DC fast-charging station with 125 kW charging, the ID.4 can go from five to 80 percent charged in about 38 minutes. With purchase, ID.4 owners receive three years of unlimited charging at Electrify America DC Fast Chargers at no additional cost.

The 2021 ID.4 is on sale now, with pricing for the rear-wheel-drive ID.4 Pro starting at $39,995 MSRP, before a potential Federal tax credit of up to $7,500. The Pro S carries an MSRP of $44,495. The limited-run ID.4 1st Edition, which sold out the day the vehicle was launched, carried an MSRP of $43,995.

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