Going for big horsepower isn’t enough anymore, lightweight is the name of the game. With the rising popularity in time attack, every little bit of weight loss helps to shave those milliseconds off the clock. Carbon fiber has always been the epitome of a weight loss composite material. Its lightweight and high tensile strength properties make it the suitable choice for aircraft and spacecraft machines. And if it’s good enough for the aerospace industry, it’s certainly an important benefit for race machines. It serves the purpose and looks incredible to boot.
The Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution, once a rally powerhouse now lends its strength to the circuit scene; time attack in particular. The once intimidating Nissan Skyline GT-R now finds itself outclassed by the smaller, well balanced, 2.0 liter 4WD machines. All the top players are breaking records with the Evolution; in 2012 it was Nemo Racing who broke the world time attack record, and in 2013 Tilton Interiors Racing returned to WTAC and told Nemo Racing to step off the top podium. Guess which Evolution these teams are using?
This Evo IX from Spark Motorsports is definitely one of the more extreme road legal track machines that have graced our pages. If not for roof and rear quarter panel, we would not have known that this car was red in colour. Every other panel that can be replaced has already been replaced with carbon fiber. Paint? Who needs it when you have carbon fiber panels looking as sexy and glossy as these ones.
The carbon fiber has not been fitted on just for its good looks. The owner obviously seems very serious about performance and track racing. How serious? Well, let’s start with the fact that his gearbox has been replaced with an Albins straight cut dogbox with a sequential shifter. And you wouldn’t have known about it either, looking at the interior. Keen eyed readers would be able to spot the longer shifter, but otherwise everything is stealthily blended in with the factory console and shifter cover.
You’d be thinking that the engine must have some pretty serious hardware to match that Albins gearbox, and you’d be right. Here are some of the parts that have gone into it; a Cosworth built block, Cosworth cams, Cosworth valve springs, Tomei solid lifters, ARP head studs, ported and polished cylinder head, Tomei adjustable cam sprocket, AMS balance shaft eliminator kit, FIC 1050cc injectors, and a Forced Performance BLACK ball bearing turbocharger. Impressive, no? And that alone is just the start of the engine bay.
To keep the engine properly tuned, Spark Motorsports chose to use the Autronic SM4 PnP ECU, which one of the top brands from Australia. Along with the Autronic ECU, the car also spots an Apexi AVC-R and a host of Defi Advance parts.
Now let’s feature the important bits of a track car; the suspension and brakes. Just as with the other components, no expense has been spared here. This corner carver comes fully equipped with a TEIN Super Racing kit, Ralliart bushings, a Perrin Performance Positive Steering Response System anti-lift kit, H&R anti roll bars, and a Cusco 7 point roll cage, because you should not be cheap when it comes to safety! The owner has opted for an Alcon brake kit for his Evo, which will stop the car faster than it takes for you to finish reading this sentence. The owner usually wears AME Tracer TM-02s for his machine or Enkei RPF1s if he chooses to, but either way they’d be running on sticky Toyo Proxes R888 semi slick tyres.
A fully built track machine is the ultimate progression of performance car, but a road legal one also has its perks. The ability to drive your machine to the race track, give it a good workout, and drive back home at the end of the day, with air-conditioning I might add, is a feat in which the owner can take pride in. This is the ultimate weekend car we all dream about.
Hyperfacts! Car: Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX Engine: 4G63 2.0-liter 4-cylinder turbocharged, Cosworth built block, Cosworth cams, Cosworth dual valve springs with retainers, Tomei solid lifters, ARP head studs, ported and polished cylinder head, Tomei adjustable cam sprocket, AMS balance shaft eliminator kit, ATI super damper, Magnus V5 cast aluminum EVO intake manifold, S90 Performance throttle body, Tomei fuel rail with twin fuel line setup, FIC 1050cc injectors, Sard fuel pressure regulator, HKS Kansai carbon fiber airbox, Perrin foam filter, Perrin intercooler, GReddy twin oil cooler, ARC radiator, GReddy Type-R blow-off valve, Forced Performance BLACK ball bearing turbocharger, Sard surge tank, 3x DW300 fuel pump, Tomei Expreme exhaust manifold, Turbo outlet and downpipe, Trust PE muffler Electronics: Autronic SM4 PnP ECU, Apexi AVC-R Transmission: Albins straight cut dogbox with sequential shifter, Xtreme twin plate carbon clutch Chassis & Handling: TEIN Super Racing, Ralliart bushings, Perrin Performance PSRS anti-lift kit, H&R anti roll bars, Cusco 7 point roll cage Brakes: Alcon brake kit (6 pot front, 4 pot rear) Wheels & Tyres: AME Tracer TM-02 18×10.5, Enkei RPF1 18×10.5, Toyo Proxes R888 Interior: Defi Advance CR, Defi Advance ZD, Juran steering wheel, Bride Stradia II, Bride Zeta III Exterior: Carbon fiber bonnet, carbon fiber boot, carbon fiber doors, carbon fiber front fenders, carbon fiber rear fender add-ons, carbon fiber side skirts, carbon fiber front bumper, carbon fiber rear diffuser, carbon fiber vortex generator, APR Performance mirrors, Voltex type 5 GT wing with gurney flap Garage: Spark Motorsports