2009 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X Road Test and Review
Something this good surely must be fattening...
- 2009 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution - five-speed manual - $59,490
- None fitted;
- by Paul Maric
This is the best car, ever. That is all.
Okay, I better justify my reasoning. If the nameplate Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution means nothing to you, you may as well flick to the item. In its tenth iteration, the Evo (as it’s more affectionately known) has managed to improve on perfection.
The previous two (and in particular the 6.5 Tommi Makkinen Edition) were absolute weapons. Coupled with a technically amazing all-wheel-drive system, the Evo couldn’t be touched through corners. A turbocharged four-cylinder motor meant that once it was in boost territory, nothing could keep up.
Now in X guise, more technology has been employed to move the Evo X into another league all together.
Firstly, it looks totally different. The Evo X takes styling cues from the latest version of the Lancer. Functional bonnet scoops, along with chunky tyres and Brembo brakes make this Lancer stand out from the rest.
Inside the cabin, a set of Recaro seats and a nifty steering wheel make manhandling the Evo X an easier task. The seats are certainly not built for anyone with a donut eating habit though, they sit very tight on an average sized person, I can’t imagine what they’re like with bigger people in them.
The Evo X is a bit friendlier around town. The previous generation of the Evo was rough over potholes and impractical to drive around the city.
Head to the corners though and the Evo shines. Very direct steering with a tight steering ratio means that very little steering input is required to push the Evo through bends. Every bump in the road is felt, which makes cornering simply sublime.
Under the bonnet, you will find a 217kW, turbocharged, four-cylinder engine that produces 366Nm of torque. The test vehicle was the five-speed manual version, but there is also a dual-clutch DSG style SST gearbox that I’ve tested before.
The pace that can be carrier through corners is tremendous. Line up a corner and turn in sharp, you will find next to no body roll and an extremely rigid chassis. Pile on the throttle and the X comes to life. S-AWC (Super All Wheel Control) is the landmark system, which Mitsubishi uses to make the Evo so amazing.
All the systems combine to regulate the differential limiting action to optimise the amount of power being shuffled between the front and rear wheels. Three modes can be chosen to customise the driving style – tarmac, gravel and snow – and they work in individual ways to optimise the driving experience.
This is also the first Evo to receive stability control. Although the system works well to catch the car in extreme circumstances, I often had the feeling it was interrupting my drive.
Braking power is handled by 18-inch four-piston Brembo brakes up front and 17-inch, two-piston Brembo brakes at the rear. As you would imagine, they barely fade – even after continuous torture.
The Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X is available in three models, the five-speed, the T C SST and the MR SST. They are priced at $59,490, $64,490 and $71,690 respectively.
I’ve driven the Subaru Impreza WRX STi around Phillip Island and I have to say, the Evo X makes the STi feel like a slug – now that’s gotta be saying something!
For more comprehensive reviews:
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How does it Drive:
How does it Look:
How does it Go:
- Engine: 1998cc four-cylinder
- Power: 217kW @ 6500rpm
- Torque: 366Nm @ 3500rpm
- Induction: Turbocharged
- Transmission: Five-speed manual
- Differential/Driven Wheels: All-wheel-drive
- Brakes: 350mm front/330mm rear (both Brembo)
- Top Speed: N/A
- 0-100km/h: 5.2-seconds
- 0-400m: N/A
- CO2 Emissions: 245g/km
- Fuel Consumption: 10.2L/100km (yeah right...!)
- Fuel Tank Capacity: 55-litres
- Fuel Type: 98RON petrol
- ANCAP Rating: Five-star
- Airbags: Seven
- Safety: ABS brakes with EBD and BA. ESP.
- Spare Wheel: Space saver
- Tow Capacity: N/A
- Turning Circle: 13.4m
- Warranty: 5-year/10-year (Drivetrain/chassis)
- Weight: 1565kg
- Wheels: 18-inch alloys, 245/40R18 tyres