Evolution, as a biological point of view, evolution is taking the best of previous generations and ensuring the new generation is superior to those things that plagued it’s ancestors. From an automotive point of view, it would be progression from once set of technological achievements be it a fully capable four wheel drive system or building a stout four cylinder engine capable of producing some record power figures to refining and improving those technologies to create something better.
Evolution is an apt name then for this feature car! The Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X, bringing together nine generations of refinements to culminate into a tenth generation of perfection bringing together a more than capable four wheel drive system and a four cylinder power house. The car in question belonged to Ken Balila, and I say belonged because in typing this article in the humidity that is Auckland, the car is with a new owner and Ken has moved on to something equally exciting which I will be featuring later on in the year.
Ken had owned this car for 4 months and within those 4 months he transformed the looks of this car to match the performance it produced. Starting with the outside the car features the factory aggressive aero kit painted gloss black by New Zealand’s best painters around GT Refinishers, APR GT3 carbon side mirrors were added to replace the bulky units and a carbon fiber vortex generator and carbon fiber gurney flap on the rear spoiler complete the look. Carbon fiber was also used to replace the exterior door trims and a carbon fiber wrap was used to compliment the real carbon fiber on the front grill and door handles. Wheels can make or break a car and Ken certainly paid attention with his selection. Sitting on Swift Spec R lowering springs are some beautiful Work Kiwami’s measuring a wide 18×10.5 all around, the wheels themselves certainly make the car staunch with the spring combo, but where Ken won is with the offset, selecting +15 gave the car a much needed bolster and filled the guards more than well enough. Keeping in tune with genuine is best, Ken used the trusted and stout Work RS-R lug nuts which are worth a mention because they are worth every penny, being steel they are both legal and much stronger than their aluminum counterparts and where driver safety is concerned, you rather pay more for top quality than skimp out to save a few dollars.
Moving to the interior is even more carbon goodies with most trim pieces featuring carbon fiber wrapping and some panels featuring carbon fiber covers such as the A pillar panels, the instrument cluster hood, the AC controls, gear knob and the steering wheel. Shifting through the gears had been thought out and a Torque Solution short shifter was installed to make sure shift times were reduced ensuring more time with the foot planted. Lighting has been taken care of with some lovely white LED’s complimenting the clean slick look of the interior. Over all it’s easily said that this interior is not over the top at all with the amount of carbon fiber used but instead just looks clean and well organized, which in itself is a compliment to the designers over at Mitsubishi.
Engine wise the stock motor goes untouched since it is a more than capable platform to work with. Simple modifications can give you good gains and where people assume huge turbos and fancy chrome parts are the way to go, Ken’s car shows that simple modifications can give you a moderate power figure at which the car will stay reliable and still provide plenty of fun when the loud pedal is pushed. The car features a HKS drop in air filter and a AMS downpipe, test pipe (no catalytic converters) and a cat back to give the tough Evolution a brilliant 248KW (333Hp) at all four wheels at 18psi as tuned by the wizards at JTune.
It is easy to disregard a car that does not have a huge GT wing and a flashy wide bodykit but I hope my feature of Ken’s car shows you that you can have a clean and simple looking car that packs a great punch and has many tasteful well thought out modifications. I loved shooting this car along with chatting to a great guy and I can only look forward to feature Ken’s new car when we schedule a time. Stay tooned guy’s!
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