THE EVOLUTION ENDS HERE
Mitsubishi sends rally hero off in exclusive style, PETER BARNWELL writes
THERE will be a tear in the eye of many performance car enthusiasts at the demise of Mitsubishi’s Evolution Lancer.
It’s been around for almost 25 years and won legion fans over that time.
This status was partly due to the exploits Tommi Makinen, who took an Evo to the pinnacle of world championship rallying in late 1990s.
The Final Edition Evo 10 is available now with 150 units only up for grabs at a price of $53,700.
Specification includes a swag of premium components from highly regarded suppliers/manufacturers — BBS 18-inch forged alloy wheels, Brembo brakes, Bilstein dampers, Eibach springs, Rockford Fosgate audio to name a few
It’s essentially an Evo 10 with the optional Performance Pack thrown in for extra 1000 bucks.
Our version of Final Edition has more power — the most Evo, rated at 226kW/414Nm arrived at through better gas flow through the engine and a recalibrated engine computer. It has five-speed manual only.
The remains mostly unchanged at a 2.0-litre turbo fourcylinder with MIVEC variable valve timing and all wheel drive.
All the usual Evo bits are present, including Mitsubishi’s innovative super all-wheel control system offering Tarmac, Gravel Snow modes.
The car also gets sports ABS brakes, auto headlights, rain-sensing wipers, a reverse camera, satnav, Mitsubishi’s hard to use MMCS infotainment system, partial leather Recaro seats, cruise control, climate control, aluminium front suspension and other goodies.
Exterior upgrades include a Final Edition badge, black painted
roof, dark chrome BBS alloys, gloss grille and bonnet scoop, plus front grille surround.
Inside, a numbered plaque on the centre console denotes each of 150 units created.
Interior changes are limited to colours.
We have intimate knowledge of Evos and think this one is a good proposition. It looks smart on the road
feels good to sit in. The hard plastic dash has been with the Evo since day still looks cheap.
But overall look inside is OK apart from MMCS control system.
outside? Quite a handsome beast. The engine is smooth and quiet (too quiet) and it puts out decent amount of power the get-go.
But not enough to really roll back your eyeballs which what many current Evo owners would want. It’s all a bit too refined, a good starting point, but, like most Japanese sporty cars, a tad underdone.
Boot it in the guts and the Evo gets going OK with additional surge higher up rev range.
Lucky five-speed manual has a quick shifter so you can flick between the closely spaced intermediate ratios.
Though suspension is from respected manufacturers and there are even aluminium front arms, it’s all a bit soft when push matters. OK for cruising around the street blast on that favourite country road but anything more serious Evo Final Edition feels too soft. They need a race mode that stiffens or sharpens all the car’s dynamics and remaps throttle response. But it’s old a design for that. All-wheel drive grip is unsurpassed in road car brakes steering are safety asset without resorting to complex electronic driver assistance systems.
We found the Recaro seats to be comfy and overall drive experience pleasing.
What we suspect is that Mitsubishi has been left with a bunch of base model Evo 10 manuals it can’t move
decided to run this Final Edition extra kit.
Buyers are the winners because the manual is better drive than automated SST car.
It’s not bad. Would we buy one? No, we go for something like a Toyota 86, spend 10 grand on it and have whole lot more fun lot less money.