3. Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX
2006. – 150.000 km – 12.500 €
280 HP – 5,7 s – 250 km/h
Mitsubishi introduced the Lancer Evolution IX in Japan on March 3, 2005, and exhibited the car at the Geneva Motor Show for the European market the same day. The North American markets saw the model exhibited at the New York International Auto Show the following month. The 2.0 L 4G63 engine has MIVEC technology (variable valve timing), and a revised turbocharger design boosting official power output at the crankshaft to 291 PS (214 kW; 287 hp) and torque to 392 N·m (289 lb·ft).
The USDM Lancer Evolution IX models: standard (Grand Sport Rally or “GSR” in some markets), RS (Rally Sport), SE (Special Edition) and MR (Mitsubishi Racing) varied slightly in their performance capabilities. Subtleties unique to each model accounted for variations in acceleration, handling and top speed. The RS excluded features standard on the standard, SE and MR models (stereo system, power windows and locks, rear wiper, rear wing, trunk lining and sound insulation). The result is a weight savings of over 60 lb (27 kg). The fuel capacity remains the same as the Evo VIII at 14 U.S. gal (53 L).
Although the RS is the lightest of the group, the RS did not manage to outperform the standard IX and the MR around a road course (even if only by fractions of a second). This was purported to be due to the lack of a rear wing on the RS. In a drag race, the three models are all about even. They are all capable of 0-60 mph times between 4.2-4.5 seconds, and can run quarter mile times ranging from 12.6 to 13.3 (12.7-13.0 USA versions) seconds depending on the model/driver. The RS model was produced for rally and racing teams who wanted a platform to build a race car from. It is stripped of all the creature comforts, and other upgrades that drive the price up for features that the race teams would not require.
The US versions of the Lancer Evolution IX did not come with the AYC but the ACD was still present. The drivers can select from three different driving modes, “Tarmac”, “Gravel” and “Snow”, and the car’s computer system relatively promotes the active center differential to change the differential locking which, despite popular belief, does not change the torque split. The differential is geared at 50:50 and cannot be changed by the push of a button. What this switch actually does is quite simple. Each setting determines how long the ACD will delay in freeing the center differential after a steering input is made. In addition, it will determine how much locking force the ACD will exhibit on the clutch pack and center differential.