There’s a difficult pain that all car enthusiasts go through when they see an otherwise stellar car in dire straits because of the horrible decisions of its current or previous owners. In particular, this Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX is exactly that. Does it deserve a restoration by a caring enthusiast? I think it just might.
This 2006 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX is the last hurrah for the unbelievably stout 4G63 4-cylinder turbocharged powerhouse. With an all-wheel-drive platform and a more than adequate close ratio 5-speed manual gearbox, this was the four door car that could theoretically outpace a Ferrari and take the kids to school on the weekends. That is how school works, right? This example needs a bit of love, some cash in parts and fair dose of maturity. While the car does have decent mileage and a clean vehicle history report, it looks as if it has “driven hard and put away wet” written all over it. But with this car, it may not be as bad as you think, especially at a price tag that you could realistically get down to $12-13 grand, which is Nissan Versa money.
Barring some all-downside mods like the steering wheel that would impale your face in an accident, the car does have some strengthened bits to make the future modding process less blowy-uppy. Here’s an excerpt from the description:
- Trans total rebuild, new everything inside the trans ultimate gear ratio, done at 58k miles
- Clutch is a twin exedy,ALL new plates and release bearing when I did the trans Shifts and grabs hard
- Switched car to non acd and went with a stage 3 transfer case with a quafie lsd torque bias, did this because acd is horrid on evos to many issues and this was way stronger and no headaches.
- Removable MoMo steering wheel no cheap after market junk, nrg release set up
- Oem Brembo brakes all around rebuilt at 58k miles, and painted high temp red with decals
- Battery in the trunk, with 2/0 2 wire with a ground to the engine the way it is supposed to be on these cars,
- Also have a 3 breaker setup so no fuses.
- adjustable Bc racing coil overs all 4 wheels lowered and has large wheel spacers 20mm on each wheel.
- New oem rebuilt cv passanger side axle
- New brand new 140amp alternator done last week
- Solid oem rebuild by derpol in chicago.
- Aluminum radiator koyorad
- VRSF 4” intercooler that fits under the crash beam
- Boost and afr gauges, turbo timer
Is it worth it? Well, only if you understand that the market has a hard price stop for these cars, and you’re just squeaking under it because it needs some serious tidying up. It may be a fun toy and project to take on and I’m sure the carbon fiber bits can fetch enough cash to get some OEM body panels put back on, so you wouldn’t be running too big of an expenditure there. It’s not the cleanest example in the world, but it may be the cheapest without having a major mechanical fault or a salvage title. In any case, the market for Japanese turbo sports cars is due to explode any minute, so it may be a good buy to hoard a few of these and then sell them on when you’ve had your fun. Or race it because race car is best car.
Tavarish is the founder of APiDA Online and writes and makes videos about buying and selling cool cars on the internet. He owns the world’s cheapest Mercedes S-Class, a graffiti-bombed Lexus, and he’s the only Jalopnik author that has never driven a Miata. He also has a real name that he didn’t feel was journalist-y enough so he used a pen name and this was the best he could do.