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 |   |  Evo IX & WRX S204 STi - Super All Wheel Drive Bros.
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Evo IX & WRX S204 STi - Super All Wheel Drive Bros.

Imagine if your brother was flying the flag of your rival

Andrew Beckford
Mar 7, 2019
Photographer: Patrick Lauder

In the early days of Super Mario Bros., the only difference between Mario and Luigi was the color of their overalls. As the games progressed, the brothers each grew into their own; they were still largely similar, but each had their own flair, moves, and style.

2006 Subaru impreza WRX sti mitsubishi evo IX Photo 2/53   |   2006 Subaru Impreza WRX Sti Mitsubishi Evo IX

Why am I talking about Mario and Luigi right now? Because their dynamic makes a good analog for the two cars seen here. Also, intros are hard! Let's move on—if you're reading this then you likely know about the rivalry between the Subaru WRX and the Mitsubishi Evo. Both cars are Japanese rally icons and have extreme fandoms which could almost be considered brotherhoods. So, imagine if your brother was flying the flag of your rival?

That hypothetical is actual reality for actual brothers Arai and Yovani Martinez. Arai is the proud owner of the '06 Subaru WRX STi S204 seen in this feature. Yovani, on the other hand is the owns the Mitsubishi Evo IX.

So, how do two brothers mod their respective rides considering their major differences? In this case the answer is by leaning into JDM hard, eventually meeting in the middle when it comes to performance.

2006 subaru impreza WRX STI chargespeed JDM front lip Photo 6/53   |   2006 Subaru Impreza WRX STI Chargespeed JDM Front Lip

We'll start on the outside going in. When it comes to exterior styling for his WRX, Arai created a recipe mixing a ChargeSpeed front lip and V2 side skirts with a Voltex "Type 1" carbon fiber spoiler, and a Varis carbon fiber hood to finish off the aero. For an extra bit of flavor Arai also added a set of JDM STi window visor.

Mitsubishi evo IX ralliart front lip Photo 7/53   |   Mitsubishi Evo IX Ralliart Front Lip

In the case of the Evo, Yovani orchestrated an eclectic mix of aero in the form of a VIS carbon fiber hood, APR front splitter, a color-matched authentic Rallyart front lip, side skirts by Rexspeed, and a JDM rear bumper complete with a Varis rear diffuser.

When it comes to the shoes on this pair of rally racers, the brothers differed vastly in their approach. Arai decided to stick with the JDM route by equipping his WRX with a set of 18 x 10-inch Enkei RS05RR wheels. Yovani decided he would rather go multi-piece by fitting a set of 18 x 10-inch RSV 3-piece forged wheels for his Evo.

Both brothers opted for Stance coilovers and Cusco braces and swaybars in their respective suspension setups, though the footwork isn't the only place in which the two agreed.

2006 subaru impreza WRX STI engine bay Photo 11/53   |   2006 Subaru Impreza WRX STI Engine Bay

If you pop both hoods you'll obviously see two vastly different engine types but you will find the same upgraded Garrett GT35R turbocharger. Garrett is a popular boost unit no matter what flag you fly so it isn't that surprising that both brothers would opt for the GT35R. Similarities end there however as each car has its own solution for engine management. Yovani's engine set up is controlled via an open source ECU with Speed Density software. Arai on the other hand opted for the tried and true Cobb Tuning V3 unit; a staple among the WRX faithful.

Mitsubishi evo IX engine bay Photo 12/53   |   Mitsubishi Evo IX Engine Bay

While both cars have the same turbo, by no means should you expect them to sound remotely similar. Besides Arai's STi having the tell-tale WRX rumble, his car's spent gasses are trumpeted through a custom HKS exhaust while Yovani's Evo makes music with the help of an A'PEXi unit. Though I'm sure if the two cars were to rev in unison it would be a melodic experience indeed.

So, after studying both of these cars, which could be said is better? I'm not going to take a side here. I think both of these cars are awesome and personally my favorite thing about this feature is that it is a literal presentation of how a car can reflect someone's personality. When you think about it, in stock form the WRX and Evo are largely similar cars (come at me bro). Yet, when you look at what the Martinez brothers have done with their respective builds it really demonstrates how subtle nuanced mods can make a vast contribution in making a build reflect the builder.

2006 Subaru impreza WRX sti mitsubishi evo IX Photo 16/53   |   2006 Subaru Impreza WRX Sti Mitsubishi Evo IX

As a bonus, this feature also shows that despite what side we may pick in a particular debate, we can still get along.

2006 subaru impreza WRX STI chargespeed v2 side skirts Photo 23/53   |   2006 Subaru Impreza WRX STI Chargespeed V2 Side Skirts
Mitsubishi evo IX Cusco bride seats Photo 30/53   |   Mitsubishi Evo IX Cusco Bride Seats
2006 subaru impreza WRX STI Cusco racing seats Photo 40/53   |   2006 Subaru Impreza WRX STI Cusco Racing Seats
Mitsubishi evo IX voltex type 5v rear wing Photo 47/53   |   Mitsubishi Evo IX Voltex Type 5V Rear Wing
By Andrew Beckford
65 Articles
Evo IX & WRX S204 STi - Super All Wheel Drive Bros.
Tuning Menu
2006 Subaru Impreza WRX S204 STi
Owner: Arai Martinez
Engine: Brian Crower stage 3 build, 280 cams; Cusco EL headers; Ultimate Racing up-pipe, down-pipe, front mount intercooler and custom white charge piping; Garrett GT35R rotated turbo kit; APS TGV delete; HKS intake, timing belt, SS blow-off valve, custom exhaust; COBB Tuning Boost Control System, Accessport V3 tuned by COBB SoCal; HELLA Supertone horns
Footwork & Chassis: Stance GR+ Pro coilover system; Cusco front top and bottom and rear top strut tower braces; -3 degree camber all around
Brakes: Brembo calipers in white; StopTech rotors
Wheels & Tires: double wishbones, control arms f&r, variable damping
Wheels & Tires: Enkei RS05RR charcoal 18x10-in. +18 wheels; Federal 225/40/18 tires; BloxRacing blue lug nuts
Exterior: ChargeSpeed JDM front lip kit, v2 side skirts; Voltex Type1 V-mount carbon fiber spoiler; JDM STi window visors; Varis custom carbon fiber hood
Interior: Cusco racing seats, 8-point roll cage with carbon fiber X bars; A'PEXi turbo timer; AEM boost gauge, A/F controller; BloxRacing polished gold shift knob
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX
Owner: Yovani Martinez
Engine: ETS Garrett GTX ball bearing 35R turbo kit, front mount intercooler, lower intercooler plumbing; Injen top pipe; Brian Crower 280 cams, titanium valves, springs and retainers; ARP head studs and rod studs; HKS timing belt and cam gears; 1,650 cc injectors; two Full Blown Motorsports fuel pumps; Koyo radiator; A'PEXi exhaust; GReddy blow-off valve
Drivetrain: Exedy stage 2 clutch
Engine Management: Speed density with open source ECU
Footwork & Chassis: Stance coilovers with 14k springs; Whiteline front and rear anti-sway bars; Cusco front brace
Brakes: Brembo calipers; 88rotors rotors; Hawk pads
Wheels & Tires: RSV Forged wheels 18x10-in.; Toyo R888 tires
Exterior: APR front splitter; custom canards; Rexpeed front oil cooler covers, side skirts; Ralliart carbon front lip, colored matched; VIS carbon hood, colored matched, roof vortex generator; Voltex Type 5v rear wing mounted with custom brackets; JDM OEM rear bumper with UK fog light; Varis rear diffuser; carbon mirror covers
Interior: Cusco Bride Stradia II driver seat, Vios III passenger seat; AutoPower roll bar; double-DIN stereo; Sparco harnesses

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