FEATURE – A MITSUBISHI EVOLUTION VIII THAT IS BARELY STREET LEGAL
The very first thought that ran through my mind when Dan’s Evo 8 drove towards me was “How the hell does this thing have plates?” I’ve stood next to less imposing, quieter race cars on pit lane before. This raw and purpose-built machine clearly looked out of place being driven on the street. That’s not to say I was disappointed to see it on the street – quite the opposite.
The car might not have received the full attention it deserves if I was to pass it track side, surrounded by similar vehicles, but out on the street, the car got all the attention it deserved, and not just from me. Literally everyone who strolled past stopped or slowed down to admire and appreciate the raw power of Dan’s creation.
Having previously owned an Evolution 7, Dan knew exactly what he was looking for when sourcing the new canvas for his latest monster masterpiece. In terms of ‘bang for buck’ for a track or rally platform, the Evo is untouchable. A call was placed to Sydney’s respected IMG Importers with the instructions to find an Evolution 8 MR that was completely stock, and grade 4.5. Within a month the newly-acquired Evo 8 was on a ship and heading south to its new owner.
The car didn’t stay stock for long, Dan almost immediately began work and the track transformation was underway. Starting with the usual mild mods one begins with including an exhaust, cold air intake, Ralliart computer and Ralliart ACD Controller, the lap times dropped as Dan grew more comfortable with the car and the refining of some settings. The positive results spurred Dan on to do some more homework and figure out the next steps needed to take the car and his driving to the next level: competing in Super Sprints.
It was time to step up to the plate and get serious about motorsport. Moving from the relaxed, casual track day to the competitive world of Super Sprints was a perfect excuse for the car to receive a bit of extra tender loving care in the form of copious modifications and an almost complete make over. Virtually every aspect of the car was modified or improved in some way.
The engine was stripped back to pieces and rebuilt from the ground up with a shopping list of Japanese parts almost guaranteed to make your competition hate you and your bank manager love you. The car was sent to Indy and the boys at IS Motor Racing with three things in mind: Power, Torque and Reliability. Attention to detail ensured that everything was done properly right from the very beginning to minimise the chances of any issues later on down the track. The engine’s internals are a mix of HKS and Tomei with a sprinkle of Indy’s own secrets including a custom tune on the newly-installed Apexi PowerFC D-Jetro computer. The intake side is mostly HKS while the exhaust side is headed up by a mixture of Tomei and locally-fabricated bolt-on’s to maximise output. An ARMS turbo and E85 setup provide the combustion that allows this monster to reliably put out 280kW at all four wheels, and a massive 600Nm torque on E85 fuel. Check the bottom of the feature for a more complete parts list.
The standard Brembos were replaced with larger Endless 6-pot front and 4-pot rear calipers with braided lines and slotted rotors. The whole suspension package was ripped out and replaced with Ohlins DFV coil-overs and Eibach Springs. A set of light-weight AME 18″ rims wrapped in Hankook’s Z221 rubber were fitted to minimise unsprung mass and get the car to stick to the track like glue, even through tight turns at high speed.
The interior was gutted. A driver’s ‘Bride’ seat and 4 point harness were installed. If it wasn’t required to drive and meet registration requirements it was removed. A full cage was added to both improve vehicle rigidity but improve safety if the car ever did manage to get itself into some strife during competition.
Even the car’s Aero was given some attention with carbon canards, diffusers and a genuine Voltex GT wing being added to improve downforce. The added carbon definitely gives the car a much more aggressive stance.
In the 2012 season, Dan will be competing in the NSW Supersprints, EvolutionOz EVO Vs STI, EVO Nats, various NSW Hillclimb series and of course the World Time Attack. It’s a pretty full race calendar for a solo driver.
We asked Dan if there was anyone he’d like to thank for helping him create his monster.
“I really want to thank all the guys at IS Motor Racing (Indy, Gary, Nic, Yun) for all their meticulous work, expertise, advice and patience. Budi from Autechnik, for supplying me with the awesome rims, and all my family and friends for putting up with me spending so much time and money on the car.”
We’d also like to thank everyone involved for letting one of Sydney’s toughest Evo’s take shape.
As complete as the car looks and feels, I don’t expect this car has seen the end of its mods list. Planning for the next set of modifications is already underway with a new turbo and a tune with an expected output of 300kW, better brakes and PPG dogbox getting ready for fitment, all with the aim of shaving another second or two off lap times.SPECS
Rebuilt 2L with Tomei ARMS Turbo
Aprox 280kw & 600Nm Torque atw on Sucrogen 108 Octane E85
HKS ISMR custom cams
Tomei cam gears
Tomei Valve springs
Full Race Headers
Tomei front and dump pipe
Trust titanium cat back exhaust
HKS oil cooler + Greddy 2nd oil cooler
HKS RS intake
HKS Kansai airbox
HKS type R intercooler and piping
Walbro fuel pump
Tomei fuel regulator
HKS EVC 5 boost controller
TM Works coil pack
HKS Spark Plugs
Apexi PowerFC D-Jetro ECU tuned by Indy @ IS Motor Racing with Fuel Control Sucrogen 108 Octane E85.
Royal Purple Oils are used in the engine, gearbox and diffs.
Suspension and Brakes
Ohlins DFV coilovers with Eibach springs
Endless 6-pot 345mm front and 4-pot 330mm rear brakes with Endless CCX pads
Endless braided lines
Custom brake cooling
ORC twin plate clutch
Cusco rear LSD
Ralliart ACD controller
Carbing front and rear strut brace
HKS Kansai underbody brace
Cusco front swaybar
Agency Power rear sway bar
Bolt-in full roll cage
EVO 9 front and rear bars
Voltex rear wing,
APR front splitter
Custom Headlight intake
Custom front tow hook.
AME 18×9.5 +22
Hankook Z221 or RS3 tyres
Suede-covered dash and steering wheel
Bride Zeta 3 seat
battery relocated to boot
Cut off switch
Ralliart dash cluster
Rear seats removed
Sound deadening removed.
Words – Matthew Everingham
Photos – Matthew Everingham