Review of the EVO VII RS Sprint by EVO Magazine. For those who think the Evo VII’s soft, here’s a harder charging version
Mitsubishi EVO VII RS Sprint
When it comes to whizz-bang rally-bred saloons, Mitsubishi’s long line of Evolution models has always delivered a sharper, more uncompromisingly intense driving experience than the equivalent Subaru Imprezas.
So you can probably imagine what a riot Ralliart’s Evo VII RS Sprint is to drive. Like the Evo VI RS Sprint before it, this latest model is built for those of you who think the standard Evo VII is a little bit soft and fluffy. No ABS, no Active Yaw Control, no electric windows and definitely no prisoners.
That’s not to say Ralliart is selling you a ‘comfort-spec’ Evo VII GSR with all the toys removed. Far from it, in fact. It’s simply that, apart from a super-supportive pair of Recaro seats, the RS Sprint’s goodies are aimed at making it go faster and corner harder, not at making your life more cosy.
So, starting with a bum-basic Evo VII, Ralliart fits stronger ARP con-rod bolts to enable the engine to survive an increase in turbo boost pressure, from the standard car’s 1.0 bar to a beefier 1.3 bar. Together with an HKS Superflow induction kit that rams more air into the 2-litre, four-cylinder engine’s hungry gullet, the RS Sprint develops a rip snorting 320bhp and 327lb ft of torque – that’s up around 40bhp and 40lb ft.
That’s not a huge increase over the standard Evo VII, but when combined with super-close-ratio gearing and a vertically challenged final drive, the RS Sprint’s accelerative urgency borders on the hair-trigger. To give you some idea, the Sprint can chunter quite happily through urban 40mph limits in fifth gear, then accelerate with real conviction as soon as the black and white de-restriction sign fills the windscreen. Consequently you seldom need to dip below fourth gear, unless you really are hell-bent on nailing your overtakes or extracting the absolute maximum out of your corner exit speeds, in which case third gear is your savagely effective weapon of choice.
Words: Richard Meaden – Read the full article at EVO Magazine