Now that we are all caught up on the exterior, here are the other subtle changes I’ve added to the car since February.
The only real suspension modification I have added since the Cusco front and rear strut tower braces are the KW V3 coilovers I mentioned previously, and the Cusco front pillow ball mounts. The rear top hat components were all replaced with new items sourced, once again, from Russell at MitsubishiParts.net.
Cusco makes a load of awesome suspension braces for the CT9A chassis, so I am hoping to add some more of their pieces to the car this winter. Aside from additional bracing and perhaps a rear sway bar, I don’t think I will end up changing much else on this car’s suspension. A setup similar to the 240 would be overkill on this car, not to mention the fact that most of it will be subjected to winter duty, so I think for the most part I will be keeping things simple.
My other priority in this department is brake pads and rotors. The stuff on the car now is in decent shape, but it bugs me that the front rotors are blanks and the rears are slotted. I’d like to replace the pads and rotors at some point this winter/spring with something a bit nicer.
The engine bay has actually gotten a lot less cooler, lol. After sourcing several ARC pieces for the bay, I soon came to realize a couple of things, including the fact that this isn’t a show car build and I simply don’t have the budget I once did to sink into a build. I thought a lot about what I wanted in a car that needs to br driven year-round, and found that my priorities are really reliability and exterior appearance. Knowing that I needed several things for spring to be able to enjoy the car and that I could make a pretty solid profit on most of my ARC pieces, I decided to let them go.
Here’s a shot of the bay completed before I decided to sell off the ARC collection to fund other aspects of the car:
This is how the bay currently sits today. All I have really added visually are the Tomei oil cap, spark plug cover, and exhaust manifold shield. I have been a fan of Tomei stuff for a while and am running a few of their other parts on the car, so I thought it was fitting. Not to mention it’s all a bit more affordable than old, used ARC stuff.
It’s not too pretty, but I at least try to keep it clean once in a while. I’d like to add a few other details back into the bay just to spice it up a little more, but I don’t have a lot in mind. Maybe a Cusco cooling panel, an intake, and some replacement intercooler piping. Note: The air filter was removed during engine bay cleaning in this picture.
I also had the car street tuned by a couple of local Evo gurus that go by the name of Antilag Racing. They did a great job with the car and it’s much more chill for daily driving now- no sputtering or random stalling anymore. I’m running a conservative 23 lbs or so of boost, and I stressed that I am really not after big numbers or anything like that- I just want the car to remain reliable. It’s got enough power to be enjoyable in its current configuration in my opinion. I’ll be due for a timing belt and other 60k maintenance items by spring, so maybe I’ll consider some other engine related upgrades at that time. For now I am content though, aside from cool dress up doo-dads here and there.
The interior of the car has also remained fairly chill. Toby Broadfield created a beautiful custom gauge enclosure for me, and was also cool enough to spray my center console and ash tray to ensure a perfect match. The color he used was more or less spot on with the factory hue, but he’s a perfectionist and wanted it to be just right. The custom panel houses my Defi Advance CR gauges that I ran in the 240.
Painted Evo IX shift trim with Evo IX shift boot, Tomei shift knob, and JDM badge:
The center console cup holders in the Evo VIII feature a switch for the intercooler sprayer. This didn’t work when I bought my car and it was removed when I did the IX front bumper setup, so I replaced the cup holder with one from an Evo IX.
Finally, I added OEM Evo IX pedals and CF look dash trim. I guess it could almost be considered an Evo IX interior at this point, except with the ugly blue Evo VIII seats.
I ended up selling my WB SPLASH hub, quick release, and Nardi steering wheel to fund other items when I sold the ARC stuff back in March. I kind of wish I had held on to it, but other things took priority at the time. I’d like to add a Nardi wheel and some seats to really bring the interior to the same level as the exterior. This might not happen for a while (or at all) but I think those two simple additions would make me really happy with the Evo’s cockpit. Oh, and a Cusco cage would of course be awesome- but I don’t think that’s going to happen this time around, haha.
So I think that just about brings you up to speed on where the Evo has been in the last six months. I’ll try to keep this updated in real time from now on as I make changes to the car. I’m hoping to add a Voltex wing before the snow flies, but time seems to be flying by faster than ever these days. We’ll see if I can make it happen. Thanks for reading!