Saying Goodbye to the Mitsubishi EVO

by Michael Satterfield

The Mitsubishi Evolution was a 'poster car' for kids like me who grew up in the 90's explosion of JDM performance. You couldn't go to a car meet without seeing an Evolution IV inspired body kit on everything from a Honda Civic to a Toyota Celica, that's how influential the EVO was at the time. We all wanted one, even though none of us could afford one at the time. But it was one of those attainable dream cars that was almost universally lusted after in the late 90s.

Even though it would be another eight years before an EVO would be sold in the US, drivers like Tommi Mäkinen, Freddy Loix, Alister McRae, and François Delecour help make it a legend with fans in the USA. The EVO seemed almost mythic when compared to the basic Lancers that roamed the streets of America, and enthusiasts couldn't wait to get their hands on USDM Lancer Evolution. So when the eighth generation landed on our shores Mitsubishi gave many a chance to own their dream car, and created some competition for the Subaru WRX which had landed in the US a few years earlier.

But sadly, of the ten generations of EVO, the US just got the last three, as Mitsubishi pulled out of WRC and other forms of racing, the bottom line of keeping a purpose built street version of their rally car made less and less sense, and after ten generations of Evolution, it's over.

So this is goodbye to the EVO, not just for the US, but globally. The Final Edition is a fitting send off for the EVO a raw driver focused car that is not overloaded with options. Instead of luxury items the Final Edition gets an aluminum roof, Enkei® alloy wheels, suspension tuned by Bilstein and Eibach, and massive Brembo brakes. With 303 hp and 305 lb-ft of torque the AWD Evolution is a blast to drive on a winding road. The car feels like it wants to go fast, it is a car that wants to be driven to the limit, but it is civil enough for a daily driver.

Lancer Evolutions Final Editions are still available at select dealers, for less than $40K you can't find a more competent no compromise car direct from the dealer. Plus, it still has 4 doors, a useable trunk, and is one of just 1,000 made.

For more info or to set up a test drive visit Mitsubishi's official website HERE.

It was only fitting that I said goodbye to the EVO by taking it for a drive in the mountains, it's natural habitat. Check out the video below.