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Wednesday 3rd October 2012

PH buying guide: Mitsubishi Evo VI

Best Evo ever? The VI is in with a shout - here's how to buy a beaut



It seems strange in hindsight that it took Mitsubishi so long to capitalise on the success of its Evo rally car with a road-going model for sale in Europe. Having dominated the World Rally Championship (WRC) between 1996 and 1999 with four title wins on the trot for Tommi Makinen, the Evo was easily beaten in the showroom by the Subaru WRX.

It wasn't until the launch of the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VI, more commonly referred to as the Evo VI GSR, that the Japanese firm entered the consciousness of all but the keenest enthusiasts. Even then, the majority of Evo VIs entering the UK were grey import cars, with only a handful brought in and sold with warranty through a small number Ralliart dealers.

Sought after Makinen Edition much prized
Sought after Makinen Edition much prized
With a price tag of £30,995 when it officially went on sale in the UK at the beginning of 1999, the Evo VI proved a performance bargain. With a modestly claimed 276hp from its 2.0-litre turbocharged engine, permanent four-wheel drive with Active Yaw Control that gave physics-defying handling and a practical four-door body, the Evo immediately gave Subaru a bloody nose. It also helped the Evo VI could crack 0-60mph in 4.4 seconds and head on to 150mph rather than the 112mph limited top speed of many Japanese import models.

The Evo VI's candle burned brightly for a mere two years before being replaced in March 2001 by the Evo VII. For many, the Evo VI remains the iconic pinnacle of Mitsubishi Evo design for its style, aggression and usability. It's also quite simple to extract considerably more power from it, making it popular with tuners and track day addicts.

As well as the standard Evo VI, Mitsubishi launched the Tommi Makinen special edition, available with an optional sticker pack to give the car a similar appearance to the four-time WRC champion's rally car. There were also RS, RS2, RS Sprint and Extreme limited edition models, and some other exotic editions not officially sold in the UK.

Still hugely popular and fast attaining classic status, the Mitsubishi Evo VI can be bought for as little as £5,000. For a perfect example of one of the 26 Extreme models built, you'll need £20,000, but half that will bag a good Evo VI that will be worth hanging on to. We'll concentrate on the Evo VI GSR and Tommi Makinen Edition models here as they are the most plentiful in the UK.


Owner's view:
"I think the handling is the stand out feature, with the complex 4WD system always giving you confidence in all road conditions, but it really is a well rounded package - brakes, handling, power, driver involvement, quality of gearshift, practicality - all are first rate and I'm sure the Evo VI would easily hold it's own against modern day rivals."
Adam Hamlet


Buying guide contents:
Introduction
Powertrain
Rolling Chassis
Body
Interior
Search used Evo VIs in the PH classifieds

 

 

alisdairsuttie
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Krikkit

Original Poster:

5,189 posts

68 months

[news] 
Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
Have always loved these cars, an VI GSR was the first car that I was a properly frightened passenger in, a friend's Dad took a local de-restricted roundabout about 40mph faster than I'd ever done before and it was totally planted.

Question for those running them, are they really 20-something mpg cars?

RINGMEISTER

154 posts

68 months

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Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
Quite fancy a mint red Tommy Mak with sticker pack, would have to be largely standard though and absoltuely mint. Who knows in another 10 years it might be worth 65k like that rs500!!

PSBuckshot

4,909 posts

46 months

[news] 
Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
The only Evo I like.
Lovely lovely car!

sodslaw

189 posts

26 months

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Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
RINGMEISTER said:
Quite fancy a mint red Tommy Mak with sticker pack, would have to be largely standard though and absoltuely mint. Who knows in another 10 years it might be worth 65k like that rs500!!
You mean in 10 years someone might be deluded enough to think they can sell theirs for 65k?

Just because some absolute nobber fabricates a extortionate figure plucked from their own little dream world, don't think for a second its worth that much.

Dave Hedgehog

7,331 posts

91 months

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Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
love the 6, my mate had an evo VI extreme with an RS450 conversion, fastest bloody thing i have ever driven

adore them biggrin
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Crow555

1,036 posts

81 months

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Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
The Lancer Register have a very good, in-depth guide on buying an Evo. Some pricing information is a bit out of date but asides that, it appears thorough. Handy as a second reference to this. It's 8MB though, be warned.

Lancer Register Buying Guide

I just wish there was an equivalent Impreza STI guide.

NotNormal

1,892 posts

101 months

[news] 
Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
sodslaw said:
You mean in 10 years someone might be deluded enough to think they can sell theirs for 65k?

Just because some absolute nobber fabricates a extortionate figure plucked from their own little dream world, don't think for a second its worth that much.
I see you have not posted those thoughts on the thread in question where the person you refer to might read them. If this is the sort of comments you bring to this forum, please leave rolleyes

melvster

6,643 posts

72 months

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Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
Would love a totally standard mint example, especially a TME.

Epic.



*Kosta*

900 posts

90 months

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Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
Krikkit said:
Question for those running them, are they really 20-something mpg cars?
I owned an VIII for 4 years and about 65k (albeit with a six speed box) and 27-28MPG was easily achievable on a run.

I averaged 30.5 on a run from Lancaster to Spa via Hull-Zeebrugge a couple of years ago.

The only problem is, all Evos are difficult to drive slow so more often than not, your MPG is only just in double figures

ge0rge

1,306 posts

92 months

[news] 
Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
Had a VI GSR for two years, two of the finest years of my motoring life.. Such a wonderful car and so confidence inspiring, plus it was fairly easy to drive at 10/10's. A joy apart from the running costs as i never really got above 23mpg out of it. Tires every 4k. Servicing every 4.5k.

Edited by ge0rge on Wednesday 3rd October 12:43

havoc

21,229 posts

122 months

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Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
Lot of respect for these cars...came close to getting one instead of ITR #2, but fuel-economy and servicing costs put me off (as a daily driver).

Krikkit

Original Poster:

5,189 posts

68 months

[news] 
Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
*Kosta* said:
Krikkit said:
Question for those running them, are they really 20-something mpg cars?
I owned an VIII for 4 years and about 65k (albeit with a six speed box) and 27-28MPG was easily achievable on a run.

I averaged 30.5 on a run from Lancaster to Spa via Hull-Zeebrugge a couple of years ago.

The only problem is, all Evos are difficult to drive slow so more often than not, your MPG is only just in double figures
Just the info I was after, thanks! That makes them much more manageable, I thought they might be scooby-grade where 30mpg is a dream! Definitely on my list of cars to own, a grey one.

RobCrezz

7,854 posts

95 months

[news] 
Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
Krikkit said:
*Kosta* said:
Krikkit said:
Question for those running them, are they really 20-something mpg cars?
I owned an VIII for 4 years and about 65k (albeit with a six speed box) and 27-28MPG was easily achievable on a run.

I averaged 30.5 on a run from Lancaster to Spa via Hull-Zeebrugge a couple of years ago.

The only problem is, all Evos are difficult to drive slow so more often than not, your MPG is only just in double figures
Just the info I was after, thanks! That makes them much more manageable, I thought they might be scooby-grade where 30mpg is a dream! Definitely on my list of cars to own, a grey one.
I have a VI. 30mpg could just about be achieved, but expect averages of 20mpg in the real world.



Also, good guide, I love my VI smile

Dan_1981

10,911 posts

86 months

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Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
My 8 gets 21/22 on short runs in an every day drivign style.

I got 28 the other day on a longer run at a steady 80ish

RX7

258 posts

131 months

[news] 
Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
Krikkit said:
Have always loved these cars, an VI GSR was the first car that I was a properly frightened passenger in, a friend's Dad took a local de-restricted roundabout about 40mph faster than I'd ever done before and it was totally planted.

Question for those running them, are they really 20-something mpg cars?
Whilst i wont argue with other opinions, general consensus (forum chat) is 20mpg - 25mpg, urban cycle, of course on a run you can do better, but daily driving/commute, no chance of getting anything more realistic than mentioned, from experience.

If the price comes down any more, they are in the danger of falling into the realms of the cheap scoobie and falling into the hands of the barrow bow and chav brigade (reputation then severely tarnished), so sincerely hope they hold up in price smile

Edited by RX7 on Wednesday 3rd October 12:58

Crow555

1,036 posts

81 months

[news] 
Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
ge0rge said:
Had a VI GSR for two years, two of the finest years of my motoring life.. Such a wonderful car and so confidence inspiring, plus it was fairly easy to drive at 10/10's. A joy apart from the running costs as i never really got above 23mpg out of it. Tires every 4k. Servicing every 4.5k.

Edited by ge0rge on Wednesday 3rd October 12:43
Personally, this is what put me off one. They are a very specialist car and need the care and attention that a specialist car deserves. Me personally, I want something I can just drive and enjoy without worrying if the clutch needs changed or if I can get more life out of the tires. Epic cars but sadly in the 'chav' money bracket meaning good ones will be harder to find.

WCZ

2,357 posts

81 months

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Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
simply one of the best cars ever.

RobCrezz

7,854 posts

95 months

[news] 
Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
Crow555 said:
ge0rge said:
Had a VI GSR for two years, two of the finest years of my motoring life.. Such a wonderful car and so confidence inspiring, plus it was fairly easy to drive at 10/10's. A joy apart from the running costs as i never really got above 23mpg out of it. Tires every 4k. Servicing every 4.5k.

Edited by ge0rge on Wednesday 3rd October 12:43
Personally, this is what put me off one. They are a very specialist car and need the care and attention that a specialist car deserves. Me personally, I want something I can just drive and enjoy without worrying if the clutch needs changed or if I can get more life out of the tires. Epic cars but sadly in the 'chav' money bracket meaning good ones will be harder to find.
Tyres should last much longer than 4k unless you are on the track!

4.5k servicing is mainly oil changes, easily DIY.

JayUK91

47 posts

49 months

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Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
Hmmm, now this has really thrown me.

I'm currently waiting until next year to buy an '03 STi due to insurance costs - but these VI's are severely tempting! Very similar price bracket too.

Decisions decisions!

loudlashadjuster

1,240 posts

71 months

[news] 
Wednesday 3rd October 2012 quote quote all
My username betrays a familiarity with these things, of varying vintages. Amazing cars.

The lash adjusters aren't actually an issue in that they'll not cause any damage, other than to your pride as you start it up and it ticks away like something James Bond would try to defuse. Standard parts could suffer the same problem in as few as a few thousand miles following replacement, but aftermarket adjusters with a wider oil path should cure this once and for all. My experience may be getting a bit out of date now though as I recall some talk a few years ago that the standard Mitsubishi parts had been redesigned to prevent occurrence? Best to check on the MLR.

There are various theories behind the 'warped' discs, my own opinon is that it is instigated by a build up of pad material on the disc due to lack of 'proper' use (some MLR members spent a lot of time and money confirming this!). More agressive pads can prevent, but not cure, this. Stay away from crap like EBC [colour] Stuff though; Carbotechs did the business for me.

30MPG is an absolute 'stay off the boost' max, 22-25MPG realistic if you're not hooning it about and you'll easily see low teens if you're in a hurry. A remap will liberate more power, eliminate flat spots and provide a useful 3-6MPG improvement so this can pay for itself very quickly.

If older Evos are any guide then rust will be about your biggest issue with a VI. There can be amazing differences bewteen two ostensibly similar cars due to their provenance and usage so the advice about checking for hidden rot should not be ignored.

Best thing about a VI (or any Evo, really) - Accessible performance, all day, every day.
Worst thing about a VI (or any Evo, really) - Folk will assume you're a knuckle dragging, mouth breathing dangerous dog owner.

Note that the last point only applied after about 2007 as the motorsport/engineering enthusiasts became outnumbered by the UFC/tattoo enthusiasts. Shame, as this rather took the shine off what used to be a true motorsport icon.


Edited by loudlashadjuster on Wednesday 3rd October 13:16

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