This tuned Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X rockets-past 7000 rpm!

The Lancer Evo X is designed to push your limits on the streets and the track
The orange wheels on this Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X contrasts nicely with the grey paint.
The orange wheels on this Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X contrasts nicely with the grey paint.Shot by Avdhoot A Kolhe for evo India

If you dare, she'll do everything for you,” says Ajit Tapaswi, while I was riding shotgun in the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X. My dream as a young boy, with my desktop’s wallpaper as a red Evo X had turned into reality as I felt the adrenaline rushing through my veins while Ajit threw his Evo X at bends much faster than my brain could keep up. That’s when I realised why they say, ‘straight roads are for fast cars and turns are for fast drivers’.

Ajit says, “The place where this Evo excels is the ghats”, and rightfully so with its rally heritage and SAWC — Super All-Wheel Control system. This system doesn’t merely distribute power between the front and rear wheels, it also actively manages torque distribution between the left and right wheels. This level of precision grants the Evo X unparalleled stability and cornering prowess. Ajit and Jeet, the Tapaswi brothers, are well known in the car scene. They’re the guys behind the Underground car meets and the Off Duty Driver drift school. Unmatchable driving skills and talent are often masked by shoe-string budgets, but that’s not the case with him, who blends his passion and profession like milk with coffee. He runs an automotive performance workshop in Bangalore, 6th Mile Customs, where they tune cars and maintain their personal machines too.

Amongst the most iconic rear-ends ever, with that spoiler.
Amongst the most iconic rear-ends ever, with that spoiler.Shot by Avdhoot A Kolhe for evo India

The legacy

The Evo is based on the Mitsubishi Lancer and started its era in 1992, with the launch of the first Lancer Evolution. This Japanese rocket was launched in India in 2010 for Rs '56 lakh ex-showroom, which may have had people contemplate whether the heavy price tag for a Mitsubishi was worth it over an Audi TT or BMW 530d. This one in the Graphite grey paint scheme with the traditional rear wing (that always put a smile on my face) and functional bonnet scoops looks modern, with a classic touch. This is the MR variant of the Evo X that gets standard BBS Alloys (now dipped in bright orange), Recaro performance seats, Bilstein dampers and Eibach springs. The Evo X houses a 2-litre Mivec Turbo that produces 290bhp and 366Nm of torque mated to a 6-speed SST twin-clutch transmission with steering column mounted magnesium paddles. The Evo surprisingly missed out on launch control, so takeoffs aren’t so violent but once the turbo spools up, it takes you to 7800rpm in the blink of an eye. The body is built of lightweight aluminium resulting in a kerb weight of 1605kg with side-strakes that help in aerodynamic efficiency. The car is always thirsty for high octane petrol and delivers a mileage of 4kmpl in the city and around 6kmpl on the highway.

7800rpm in the blink of an eye.
7800rpm in the blink of an eye.Shot by Avdhoot A Kolhe for evo India

Enhancements overview

Under the hood, there’s a carbonfibre BMC cold-air intake which helps his machine breathe better and NGK spark plugs to help the car with a better crank and ignition. To make his car quicker and more responsive, Ajit got in touch with Tim, an Australian friend who made EVC throttle controllers, alongside Bosch and Mitsubishi. He got the throttle controller to extract better performance instead of a tune because he wanted to avoid any unnecessary issues. These are plug and play devices that do not require any sort of wire tampering and sit right above the gas pedal with a direct connection to the ECU module. It provides 18 maps on the go including drag, rally, economy, sport plus. He says, “Because of the availability of the power, you don’t go looking for it and when you don’t go looking for it, you do not harass the car.” The vehicle sounds feisty and eager because of the Milltek endcan installed that produces a burble and pop at deceleration. The stock 18-inch BBS alloys — that cost around Rs`5 lakh currently for a set of four — are shod with sticky P Zero rubber. The car has been upgraded with EBC brake discs while, retaining the stock Brembo brake calipers.

What’s inside?

The interior seems improved over its predecessors and doesn’t feel like it’s put together by a 2-year-old any more with cheap plastic. It’s covered seamlessly by Stanley Nappa leather seats in a shade of orange that complements the alloys. The audio system with a 770-watt Rockford Fosgate stereo is controlled via buttons and misses out on a display screen, USB slot and Bluetooth that were offered by German rivals at the time. The Recaro seats are not adjustable for height, so you sit low, grabbing a meaty steering wheel full of feedback.

The throttle controller is placed on the dash.
The throttle controller is placed on the dash.Shot by Avdhoot A Kolhe for evo India

Evo X Elegance

What I experienced that day took me back to the day when my childhood crush spoke to me for the first time, because it put that infectious smile on my face. The Recaro seats with the Nappa leather seat covers are comfortable and holds you firmly in place. Ride quality in the Evo X felt stiff at lower speeds but still road-worthy enough to not get thrown around by bumps or any undulations on the road. The car is a regular sedan from the inside too, with enough space to comfortably ferry five people and a few suitcases. The high-speed performance on narrow and uneven roads gave me an idea of how well the Evo would perform if conditions were in its favour.

The orange shaded Stanley Nappa leather seats.
The orange shaded Stanley Nappa leather seats. Shot by Avdhoot A Kolhe for evo India

An absolute weapon

The modifications are done to improve reliability and longevity of the engine, so he can use it as his daily-drive and not only for Sunday morning drives. Ajit is currently waiting on a Borla full-system exhaust that’s on its way from the USA. This truly is the ‘Thrill of Driving’ and we wish to see this car running for years to come. Mitsubishi has unfortunately stopped producing such driver-oriented vehicles, to make hybrids and SUVs for the mass market, but have left behind a legacy worth remembering.

This Mitsubishi Evo X MR has been modified by 6th Mile Customs in Bengaluru. They can be contacted at +91 81058 17505.

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