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Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX Wagon - The Compromise

Reinventing the family car by way of EVO

Aaron Bonk
Apr 17, 2017
Photographer: Chad Burdette

Station wagons were never supposed to be fast. Early models were made out of lumber. Later, they came with things like rear-facing bench seats and acrylic skylights that are synonymous with things like family road trips to the Grand Canyon. For almost a half-century, the body style existed for mothers and stood for things like their ability to facilitate an entire softball team.

And then the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX happened.

Mitsubishi evo ix wagon work emotion wheels Photo 2/14   |   Mitsubishi Evo Ix Wagon Work Emotion Wheels

Kimmy isn't a mother and he doesn't play softball. He does, however, have a thing for turbocharged 4G63 engines, all-wheel-drive layouts, and of course, station wagons. And it all starts with the F word. "When you get to a certain age and you have a family," the Thailand native says, "[there has to be] a suitable compromise." But the EVO IX wagon isn't really a compromise at all and, as it turns out, it's more EVO than wagon.

All of which is a very good thing if you're transitioning from cars like a B-series-powered Civic hatchback and, more recently, Honda's Asian-based Stream only bettered by way of a K-series swap. For Kimmy, a station wagon wasn't the obvious follow-up. "It's funny how life turns out," he says, "because I wanted a family car, but I ended up with [something with] a 4G63 turbo engine."

Mitsubishi evo ix wagon 4g63 engine Photo 6/14   |   Mitsubishi Evo Ix Wagon 4G63 Engine

Let's not forget this is the same factory-turbocharged 4G63 engine that's underneath the hoods of the sort of EVOs that've turned out four-digit numbers on the dyno and set records in everything from time attack to drag to rally. It's a venerable platform—historical, even, dating back to the late '80s—and with its cast-iron block and 16-valve head, it's capable of just about anything. And by anything, we mean household trips to Thailand's equivalent of the Grand Canyon or solo missions to the nearest drag strip to Bangkok. "I use this car for everything," Kimmy says, "from family trips to going to nice restaurants to drag racing. It's truly a multi-function vehicle."

This EVO wagon's multi-functionality is made possible by way of a TNC Racing-built long-block that's been beefed up with Arias pistons and BC rods, allowing Kimmy to turn up the boost to respectable levels and have paved the way for the impending Garrett turbo upgrade. It's one of many upgrades Kimmy plans on making as he prepares the wagon for Thailand's upcoming Rev-up 2017 event.

Station wagons were never supposed to be fast. That is, unless, you're talking about Mitsubishi's EVO IX.

Mitsubishi evo ix wagon evo recaro bucket seats Photo 10/14   |   Mitsubishi Evo Ix Wagon Evo Recaro Bucket Seats
Mitsubishi evo ix wagon driver side front view Photo 14/14   |   Mitsubishi Evo Ix Wagon Driver Side Front View
By Aaron Bonk
416 Articles
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX Wagon - The Compromise
Tuning Menu
Owner: Kimmy
Hometown: Thailand
Engine: TNC Racing-built 4G63 engine; 9.0:1 Arias pistons; BC connecting rods; TNC-Racing ported cylinder head; Tomei 272 camshafts; ported and upgraded-wheel factory turbo; TiAL 44mm blow-off valve; custom intercooler; Fuel Injector Clinic 1,150cc/min. fuel injectors; Walbro fuel pump; HKS F-Con Pro; GReddy boost controller; HKS exhaust system
Footwork & Chassis: K Sport GT Pro coilovers
Wheels & Tires: 17x9 Work Emotion wheels; Zestino tires
Thank You: My love of my life; TNC Racing Garage; Max Throttle 4 club; Lertsiri; Boonmee; Chad Burdette; and Super Street

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