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Lancer Evolution VIII Unveiled

The rally-bred Lancer Evolution was developed in competition, on the world's most unforgiving terrain, by the world's most demanding drivers. The car's mechanical specification (turbocharged all-wheel-drive) endows it with superb dynamic capability and ease of use, combining surreal road holding, incredible acceleration, purposeful styling, telepathic responses and unmatched control.

Purposeful Exterior Design

The Lancer Evolution builds upon a rigid, steel Lancer unibody as a starting point, and adds welded seams, thicker, reinforced suspension mounting points, and body member connections that, compared to the base Lancer, improve flexural rigidity by 1.6 times while doubling torsional rigidity. The more rigid the unibody, the more effective the suspension becomes at handling a wide range of road conditions and maintaining the most precise geometry.

The front bumper has been enlarged and suitably reinforced to satisfy federally mandated requirements with an additional beam that increases the strength of the bumper support structure. Atop this bumper structure is a split-grille front fascia design that features large, efficient inlets that help to improve intercooler efficiency and add to the vehicle's aggressive scowl. The fascia also includes a pair of four-bulb headlights with HID composite low beams that are matched to the wide body of the Lancer Evolution and offer improved nighttime visibility (not available on the Evolution RS). Projector-type lamps supply high-beam illumination.

The Lancer Evolution is optionally available with a carbon fiber rear wing. While the rear wing spoiler slightly improves downforce over the rear axle, in the interest of saving weight, it is not available on the Evolution RS.


A leather-covered, three-spoke MOMO(R) steering wheel and leather-covered shift knob add to the tactile quality of the interior. Round, clearly legible performance gauges are boldly illuminated with a striking red hue. The center of the Lancer Evolution's dash panel is decorated with titanium-colored paint, while the decorative panel that spans the width of the dash is accentuated with a titanium hue (RS trim features a black-colored console).

A 140-watt, six-speaker AM/FM/CD stereo is standard on the Lancer Evolution, and a 315-watt Infinity AM/FM/CD stereo with subwoofer is optional. Due to its competitive nature, the RS is not available with a stereo.

The driver of a Lancer Evolution is firmly cradled by supportive custom Recaro(R) front sport seats that help alleviate fatigue, and can be adjusted to the ideal driving position. The seats provide effective side support and include sliding and reclining controls that rely on a step-free design, allowing the precise adjustment and location of optimum seating points. The Recaro(R) front seats offer a lower center of gravity that places the driver's hip point 30 mm lower than the seats of the base Lancer sedan.

Engine and Drivetrain

The Lancer Evolution series has become legendary among car enthusiasts, not for its Recaro(R) seats (optionally available in leather for 2004), bulging fenders, or high-mounted rear wing spoiler, but as the result of a mechanical specification that endows this compact sedan with performance capabilities that rival exotic sports cars. The drivetrain of the Lancer Evolution series serves as testament to Mitsubishi's engineering and technological mastery as a car builder. The Lancer Evolution relies on a high-output, transversely-mounted four-cylinder engine mated to a secure-handling all-wheel-drive system that allows this vehicle to be driven quickly and confidently by novice and expert drivers alike.

The Lancer Evolution is powered by a proven and potent version of the 2.0-liter, 4G63, DOHC, four-cylinder engine design that has been steadily refined for improved durability, flexibility and peak power over the past decade. The engine's reciprocating assembly has been suitably reinforced with forged metal components to better withstand the increased cylinder pressures of forced induction.

A twin-scroll turbocharger helps the 2.0-liter, four-cylinder 4G63 achieve greater output than most V6 engines.

The combustion chambers are fed up to 19 psi of pressurized ambient air by a turbocharger whose design is optimized for improved throttle response and increased torque throughout the rpm range. The turbocharger's exhaust-gas-driven turbine wheel is surrounded by a twin-scroll housing that helps direct and maintain exhaust gas velocity over the turbine wheel at lower speeds to improve engine response in the low-to-mid rpm range. A lubricated shaft connects the turbine to a compressor wheel whose impeller design helps build boost earlier, reducing lag and improving response across the rev range.

To help drivers exploit such a highly tuned engine, the Lancer Evolution is equipped with a rugged competition-tested five-speed manual transmission. This strengthened transmission is capable of withstanding the engine's increased torque output in competition tune. Each of the transmission's gears is made of high-strength, surface-treated material to help better withstand sporting or competition driving.


The Lancer Evolution's suspension is designed with competition in mind through use of high-strength, lightweight aluminum and refined pillow ball linkages that improve suspension movement, response and performance. The Lancer Evolution's front suspension relies on a combination of large-diameter inverted struts and oversized coil springs designed to handle high cornering loads on a variety of surfaces. The front coil spring rate is optimized to realize a rapid response rate and are rolled from a premium steel material chosen for its superior durability. The front suspension's forged aluminum lower control arm helps reduce component weight and load on the coil springs to provide a more nimble, faster-reacting suspension. The control arm uses large-diameter reinforced bushings in addition to low-friction pillow ball bushings to free suspension movement. The Lancer Evolution's front suspension also utilizes larger-diameter ball joints that offer improved reliability in stressed conditions. In addition, the large-diameter front stabilizer (24 mm) is attached to the suspension using pillow ball bushings that reduce friction and help improve movement.

New for 2005 (Lancer Evolution all models)

For 2005 the Lancer Evolution continues to push the envelope in all aspects of performance: acceleration, cornering and braking. The 2005 Lancer Evolution VIII MR edition boasts improvements including a larger turbo for improved horsepower, six-speed close-ratio manual transmission, BBS one-piece forged alloy wheels, fast-response Bilstein(R) shocks, and an aluminum roof for a lower center of gravity. The all-wheel drive system has evolved to include front helical limited slip differential and Electronic Active Center Differential (E-ACD), which combine to create an unprecedented level of handling capability. Engine received a 5 bhp and 13 lb-ft increase, due to larger diameter turbo nozzle (9.8 --> 10.5) and new waste gate shape (oval --> circle) for improved boost response.

Technical Specifications:
Type: Inline-4, Turbocharged
Displacement cu in (cc): 122 (1997)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: 276(206) / 6500
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: 286(388) / 3500
Redline at RPM: 7000
Brakes & Tires
Brakes F/R: ABS, vented disc/vented disc
Tires F-R: 235/45 ZR17
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length Width Height in: 178.5 69.7 57.1
Weight lb (kg): 3263 (1480)
Acceleration 0-62 mph s: 5.1
Top Speed mph (km/h): 157 (253)
Fuel Economy EPA city/highway mpg (l/100 km): 18/26 (n.a.)

Base Price: 2005 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VIII - $30,699 / 38,490 (last update: 11/22/2004)

Gallery 2003 Lancer Evolution VIII

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