Error 404--Not Found

From RFC 2068 Hypertext Transfer Protocol -- HTTP/1.1:

10.4.5 404 Not Found

The server has not found anything matching the Request-URI. No indication is given of whether the condition is temporary or permanent.

If the server does not wish to make this information available to the client, the status code 403 (Forbidden) can be used instead. The 410 (Gone) status code SHOULD be used if the server knows, through some internally configurable mechanism, that an old resource is permanently unavailable and has no forwarding address.

Error 404--Not Found

Error 404--Not Found

From RFC 2068 Hypertext Transfer Protocol -- HTTP/1.1:

10.4.5 404 Not Found

The server has not found anything matching the Request-URI. No indication is given of whether the condition is temporary or permanent.

If the server does not wish to make this information available to the client, the status code 403 (Forbidden) can be used instead. The 410 (Gone) status code SHOULD be used if the server knows, through some internally configurable mechanism, that an old resource is permanently unavailable and has no forwarding address.

Global Viewpoints
Mitsubishi's new flagships



Mitsubishi's overdue flagship cars, the Proudia and Dignity, have finally been launched.


The Dignity offers living-room spaciousness, with low central tunnel and side sills.


This GDI cutaway shows upright intake ports, bowl-in-piston combustion chamber, high-pressure fuel-injection pump, and electronic throttle valve.


The 8A80 GDI engine is the first Mitsubishi powerplant to employ an aluminum cylinder block with cast-in iron liners.


Sound-absorbing and urethane foams are applied to or fill the structural frame sections of the Proudia/Dignity.

Mitsubishi's answer to Toyota's Celsior (Lexus LS400) and Nissan's President is called Proudia, the name signifying the company's proud mien for its new flagship and its traditional triple-diamond insignia. The Proudia is accompanied by a stretched version, the Dignity. The Proudia/Dignity is a joint project of Mitsubishi and Korea's Hyundai and is designed by Mitsubishi and jointly developed and manufactured at the companies' respective plants. Hyundai launched its versions, the Equus sedan and limousine, at the 1999 Seoul Motor Show.

For the car's new GDI (gasoline direct-injection) 4.5-L V8 engine, and the electronically controlled five-speed automatic transmission developed specifically for it, Mitsubishi and Hyundai have a technology-transfer agreement whereby the former provides the latter with the complete set of blueprints (or discs) of the Mitsubishi-designed engine and transmission. Both Mitsubishi and Hyundai assemble the new V8, the former at the Kyoto engine plant, for their respective requirements. Here again, they worked out a clever and economical collaborative agreement, each sharing manufacture and supply of key engine components. Mitsubishi makes the GDI cylinder heads and GDI-related equipment, and supplies Hyundai. Hyundai casts the aluminum block and other major engine components including pistons and con-rods, supplying Mitsubishi for its engine production.

As for the Mitsubishi-designed F5AH1 smart automatic, Mitsubishi relegates the entire production to Hyundai and buys it from the Korean company, obviously for production economics. Korea, and especially Hyundai, has a larger market for this type of executive carriage, as was the case with the two partners' previous large-car joint endeavor—the Hyundai Grandeur and Mitsubishi Debonair.

For the same reason, Hyundai produces and supplies all body stampings and some chassis components, including subframes, for both manufacturers. Mitsubishi welds its own bodies using these stampings at the Oh-e plant, where the Proudia and Dignity are assembled.

The Proudia is a large sedan by Japanese standards, being longer, wider, and taller than the company's previous Debonair flagship. It measures 5050 mm (199 in) long, 1870 mm (74 in) wide, and 1475 mm (58 in) tall on a 2830-mm (111-in) wheelbase and 1615-mm (64 in) tracks. The Diginity adds 285 mm (11 in) to the overall length, 250 mm (10 in) in the mid B-pillar section, which translates to the same increase in rear-seat leg room, and 35 mm (1.5 in) to a more massive and dignified front end. The Dignity's wheelbase is also longer, at 3080 mm (121 in).

As with the Debonair sedan, the Proudia/Dignity employs a transverse powertrain driving the front wheels. Two grades of the Proudia are powered by the 6G74 GDI quad-camshaft, 24-valve, 3.5-L V6 engine first introduced in the Pajero SUV. It is installed transversely in the front-wheel-drive Proudia, inline with Mitsubishi's INVECS-II smart five-speed automatic transmission. The engine is rated at 177 kW (240 hp) at 5500 rpm and 343 Nm (253 lbft) at 2500 rpm on a 10.4:1 compression ratio.

The top Proudia and all models in the Dignity range are powered by the new and largest, both in displacement and in the number of cylinders, GDI type-8A80 engine. The engine design team's aim was light weight and compactness, especially in length. The 8A80 is a 90 V8, with an aluminum block—the first for Mitsubishi's vee engines (the second for Hyundai, which developed a light-alloy V6 for the latest Sonata EF). Because of a relatively small production volume, the block is low-pressure gravity cast with 2-mm-thick dry iron liners. The closed-deck block alone saves about 45 kg (99 lb) versus a comparable cast iron block, according to a senior engine designer. The block is a two-piece design, split at the crankshaft center, and the lower block carries five bearing caps. A breather chamber and a coolant passage are cast in the valley of the block.

The V8, including twin exhaust-manifold-mounted catalytic converters, has a mass of 230 kg (507 lb), only 10 kg (22 lb) heavier than the 6G74 V6. The smaller the powertrain's mass, the more favorable the front-wheel-drive car's weight distribution gets. The V8-powered 1990-kg (4390-lb) Proudia has a 62/38 mass distribution, little different from a V6-powered version.

An essential criterion was that the new V8 fit between a pair of front MacPherson struts, which are basically similar in design to the previous Debonair's on a track widened by 85 mm (3.35 in). Mitsubishi's front-wheel-drive modus operandi also calls for an inline powertrain: the engine and electronically controlled automatic. The engine designers chose long-stroke internal dimensions to shorten the unit. The stroke is 96.8 mm (3.81 in) to the 86.0-mm (3.39-in) bore, obtaining a total displacement of 4498 cm3. The bore pitch (distance between the adjoining bore centers) is 95 mm (3.74 in), versus the Lexus LS400's 10.5 mm (0.41 in), according to a Mitsubishi designer, who added that it would be a good 80 mm (3.15 in) shorter than a longitudinally placed V8 of comparable displacement. In fact, it adds only 50 mm (1.97 in) to the company's own V6.

Two intake valves of 35.5-mm (1.40-in) diameter and two exhaust valves of 30.5-mm (1.20-in) diameter are placed in each 86.0-mm (3.39-in) bore. The 8A80 employs two-stage camshaft drive. The primary cogged belt drives a cam sprocket on each bank, to which an intermediate gear is affixed. This intermediate gear drives the intake and exhaust cam gears, which are of a two-piece spring-loaded variety. The primary belt is checked by a tensioner pulley and an idler and drives the water pump placed within the vee-bank.

The camshafts operate valves via finger-type rockers with roller-cam contacts. A hydraulic lash adjuster is employed for each rocker—the intake adjuster inside the valve, and the exhaust adjuster on the outer side of the valve. The forged crankshaft is balanced with six weights, supported by five main bearings, and each journal accommodates two connecting rods.

The 8A80's direct-injection technology is the latest development of Mitsubishi's GDI system, with upright intake ports and an asymmetrical deep recess on the piston crown. A pair of single-plunger 5-MPa (725-psi) injection pumps are driven by the intake camshafts and feed high-pressure swirl injectors. Noise suppression is of paramount importance for this luxury car. Measures taken to reduce powertrain-emission noises include high-pressure fuel supply tubes in asphalt wrapping, an oversized insulated cover atop the whole engine, an aluminum oil pan, and an elaborately shaped aerodynamic cooling fan in the 140-A alternator.

Air induction is straightforward, with no variable-length or -volume device, because the long-stroke engine produces ample low- and mid-speed torque and sufficiently high power. (Power rating is limited to 280 hp in Japan by an unwritten decree and the Japanese industry's silent agreement). The individual induction tubes downstream of the plenum chamber are 320 mm (12.6 in) long and 44 mm (1.7 in) in diameter. The GDI has a huge EGR capacity that is provided by twin EGR valves, each having a 600-L capacity.

The exhaust system has three catalytic converters. The transverse V8's space constraint places the front three-way catalyst at the collector pipe, while the rear bank's catalyst is housed within the exhaust manifold. NOx-absorbing and three-way catalysts are placed in tandem within the under-floor unit. The GDI operates in three modes by altering injection timing and air/fuel ratio (see table).

The 8A80 V8 engine in the Proudia/Dignity produces 206 kW (280 hp) at 5000 rpm and 412-Nm (304 lbft) torque at 4000 rpm on a 10.7:1 compression ratio. The V8-powered Proudia is certified with a 8.2-km/L (19.4 mpg) fuel economy on Japan's 10/15-mode urban test cycle, and meets the country's 2001 emissions standards. In addition, it qualifies as a J-TLEV—proposed by the Japanese EPA and endorsed by several densely populated cities and prefectures, including Tokyo.

The standard transmission for the Proudia/Dignity is Mitsubishi's INVECS-II adaptive five-speed automatic. Mitsubishi holds the honor of being Japan's first to introduce a transversely, inline-mounted five-speed automatic in the Debonair sedan. It was recently followed by Honda; Aisin and JATCO produce such units, but curiously they have not been adopted by their affiliates, Toyota and Nissan. The V6 is fitted with that transmission, the type F5A51. The V8's automatic is a new unit, designed by Mitsubishi and built by Hyundai. Either version has two operating modes: fully automatic in the P-R-N-D gate with the transmission adapting to the driver's style and road/traffic, and manual selection of five gears by the lever in the adjacent + gate.

The powertrain is mounted on a sturdy cradle frame at three points. The rear mount is an electronically controlled, fluid-filled type, whose damping characteristics are altered according to signals received from the electronically controlled steering and electronic powertrain control computers. The cradle frame is rubber-mounted at four points to the unitary body shell.

The car's suspension is all-independent, a refinement of the Debonair system, employing front MacPherson struts and rear multi-link arrangements. The front suspension's lower arms are forged steel, and the top of the struts are tied by a bracing bar, improving the suspension's structural rigidity. Each rear wheel is supported by upper I-arm, lower I-arm, parallel control link, and a trailing arm, with a concentric spring/shock absorber.

An electronically controlled suspension is standard in the Dignity and available in the top Proudia model. The suspension employs electronically controlled pneumatic units and variable shock absorbers. The hydraulic shock absorber has five settings on rebound and four on jounce, from very soft through hard. Each spring/shock absorber unit also checks the car's attitude for optimum ride and handling. The pneumatic units allow the car's ground clearance to be raised 30 mm (1.2 in) for travel on rougher terrain, provided speed remains under 70 km/h (43 mph) or as much as 50 mm (2.0 in) to afford important occupants dignified entry or exit or for fitting snow chains.

The all-steel, welded unitary body meets the world's toughest crash regulations, according to Mitsubishi, including 55-km/h (34-mph) frontal barrier, 64-km/h (40-mph) 40% offset, 55-km/h (34-mph) European/Japanese side impact, and 56-km/h (35-mph) rear-end collision. Sturdy body frames are further reinforced by inserting high-rigidity foam blocks into the frame sections, filling the cavity on application of heat during the paint-drying process. Other parts are also filled with noise-absorbing foam and urethane foam materials. A senior engineer said that the Proudia matches the world's benchmark car, the Lexus LS400, in road-noise suppression.

The top Proudia and all Dignity models are equipped with six airbags: dual frontal bags and four side airbags. The front passenger seat has a passenger-sensing pad so that the airbag does not deploy when the seat is unoccupied.

Mitsubishi also offers extra eyes for the driver with the optional Driver Support System: a CCD camera, which monitors the lane and warns if the driver is about to wander off or step out of it; a laser-radar activated adaptive cruise control; and a rearward watching CCD camera. The lane-watching camera system works day and night. It first warns the driver by sounding a buzzer, then vibrates the steering wheel if the driver does not take corrective action and, if stepping out of the lane becomes imminent, by pulling the steering (but not interfering the driver's control) to alert the driver. The rearward eye sees what vehicle may be behind but not seen in the interior rearview mirror so that the driver would not carelessly move into its path. Should a driver use the turn signal with such a vehicle in a rear blind spot, the system sounds a warning.

Comfort and convenience features in the Proudia/Dignity include one for important or affluent rear passengers in the Dignity. Those that stretch out can enjoy a seat cushion that extends, a seatback that reclines, and a footrest that appears from the back of the front passenger seat.

Jack Yamaguchi

AEI March 2000

Error 404--Not Found

Error 404--Not Found

From RFC 2068 Hypertext Transfer Protocol -- HTTP/1.1:

10.4.5 404 Not Found

The server has not found anything matching the Request-URI. No indication is given of whether the condition is temporary or permanent.

If the server does not wish to make this information available to the client, the status code 403 (Forbidden) can be used instead. The 410 (Gone) status code SHOULD be used if the server knows, through some internally configurable mechanism, that an old resource is permanently unavailable and has no forwarding address.