“SHINNO CON­SID­ERS HIM­SELF A BIT OF A HIS­TORY BUFF WHEN IT COMES TO THE RALLY-BRED CARS, AND CAN LIST OFF RACE RE­SULTS FROM PROM­I­NENT WRC DRIV­ERS WHO HELMED EVOS IN THEPAST.”

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poster child for Evo en­thu­si­asm would have to be the owner of the stel­lar Evo­lu­tion VII on the pages here. Takeru Shinno is an Evo nut, and knows just about ev­ery­thing about the proud family her­itage of the “Evo­lu­tion,” es­pe­cially the CT9A he owns and op­er­ates. We're not talk­ing only me­chan­i­cal facts either; Shinno con­sid­ers him­self a bit of a his­tory buff when it comes to the rally-bred cars, and can list off race re­sults from prom­i­nent WRC driv­ers who helmed Evos in the past.

For ex­am­ple: he'd to­tally be able to tell you that the Evo VII was the “fat kid” when it was in­tro­duced to the family in 2001. The CT9A was built on the Lancer Ce­dia plat­form, which weighed much more than the Evo VI of yes­ter­year, but the newer Evo would make up for the ex­tra heft with the ad­di­tion of an ac­tive cen­ter dif­fer­en­tial, a he­li­cal LSD up front, an im­proved LSD in

Athe rear, plus a bump in torque to 284 lb-ft. The VII can move, and it can move well. It should also be men­tioned that Shinno's Mit­subishi be­longs to Hara-Tire's team of cars that are built to strut into a show and shut things down, as is tra­di­tion with Hara-Tire builds. For a lit­tle bit of back­story, Hara-Tire is a small shop in Fukuoka, with what is said to be the first “stanced” R32 GT-R as their claim to fame. The demo car fea­tures WORK VSXXs wrapped in ex­tremely stretched rub­ber, fender to lip fit­ment, and a mod­er­ate dose of cam­ber to round ev­ery­thing out. With the R32 as their first suc­cess­ful foray into the show cir­cuit, Hara-Tire then rode the stance wave, churn­ing out no­table cars as that wave splashed all over Ja­pan. Ac­cord­ing to Jean-Christophe Pepino, the man be­hind the lens of this fea­ture, “It's com­mon to see a group of 10 to 15 cars wear­ing Hara-Tire col­ors at a big Ja­panese event.”

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