What started as an ‘R’ type of search turned out to be an evolutionary discovery. David had been a fan of Type R’s ever since, particularly the EK9. A close friend of his not only had the DC2 Integra type R but he also owned the DC5 Integra type R, it was the experience of these all-motor marvels that got David hooked. It was that said DC5 that David had hopes of acquiring but after missing the opportunity to purchase before it was sold by his friend; David stumbled upon what would become one of the meanest Mitsubishi’s on the street, his EVO III
Jumping from a 1000cc Suzuki swift to a turbo-charged 4wd tarmac terror is not quite the evolution that Darwin had in mind. To be fair David never went bananas in one go. He told us he had a 93 swift Gti for quite some time; stating that it was a learning experience and an opportunity for him to explore the limits of front-wheel drive. In addition, his brother’s WRX had somewhat opened his eyes to the dimensions of all-wheel boosted power.
Upon obtaining the EVO III in 08, David had a 2007 Swift Sport in, however, he sold it in 08 and got the evo. The car was fairly clean; problems noted were that of fading paint and oil being blown out by the motor. These factors weren’t so much of a deterrent given the overall cleanliness of the vehicle; in fact, Marcus Hay of HS Engineering had inspected the car along with David and told him “If you’re not going to buy it, I will!” Not to worry however, the car was sent straight to HS engineering with David’s name being on the title. The car had a few goodies to begin with, HKS 272 cams, exhaust system and a “f****d up tune,” according to David – wait what? The latter of course wasn’t good at all, in fact, that tune was so bad that David mentioned how sexed it was, two other times during the course of this interview, no pun intended. The Lution was treated to a host of belts, seals and gaskets; followed by Evo 9 pistons and rods.
One of the first major modifications was the addition of ECMLink Management system, especially in light of the f****d up tune – David’s 2nd mention.
The Evo III’s factory pistons was known to have weak ring lands, and it is fairly common finding them damaged, this caused the oil burning. No doubt the bad tune played its part though. Nothing like a proper examination and of course, a basic tune from HS Engineering to set things straight. Currently David is running the lite version of ECMLink but has plans to go with the full version pretty soon. Although it requires the use of a 2G ECU out of an Eclipse, the upgrade is worth it due to the wide range of features. One notable advantage is the “flex fuel” feature which coupled with a flex fuel sensor allows an easy change between ethanol and our pee-wee petrol, without a re-tune. Until then, an AEM meth-kit was setup to aid in compensating the short-falls of our served fuel. Aside from the fuel woes, there wasn’t any proper system to control boost and so David employed the Greddy profec B EBC to control the gale force winds that were desired from the stock turbine.
Next up! Control… A noticeable modification for David was that of purchasing good tyres. The handling increase was dramatic, “I was blown-away” he said. David had on some Khumo Ecsta SPT but decided on experimenting with semi-slicks – Direzza Z1 Star Spec, Dunlops. With optimal braking and handling, the car felt much more impressive. The suspension went from stock to BC BR-Series adjustable coil-overs. Bushings found on the EVO III are a mixture of poly rubbers and Ralliart bushings. Adjustable rear toe and camber arms were added.
Prior to the current setup, David rocked the stock OZ rims from factory in a brilliant white finish. However, since then, he installed a 5-lug conversion from the EVO 8.
The massive Brembo rotors could only be tucked under 17” metal. OEM obsession guided him to the Evo VI’s beefy wheels that he wrapped this time in Direzza ZII tires. The Evo VIII four-piston calipers housed Carbotech XP10 pads to provide superior stopping force; especially when coupled with the upgraded Goodridge Steel braided brake lines. A CNC 412 Hydraulic Staging brake was added but David retrofitted the unit to use the OEM lever. Cusco’s Brake Master Cylinder brace rounds up all additions done to the braking department.
Backtracking a bit, moments after David got the car, he made a pass on the dyno. With cams, exhaust and of course, the HS Engineering “tune” the relatively stock car produced 261whp on about 20lbs of boost. At that time the car was not “tuned” nor did it have in the ECM Link, it only had a “safe map” loaded on an old school EPROM chip from Marcus. Recently speaking, that figure that has almost doubled. Other modifications since include: upgraded intercooler and piping, ACT clutch with stock pressure plate, FP DSM Exhaust Manifold, FP Intake Pipe, upgraded actuator, an AEM 2nd Meth jet Kit and HS custom turbo preparations. The Greddy Unit was limited with its boost control and was ditched for a manual setup via a Hallman controller. This allowed more boost to be crammed within the confinements of the stock EVO III intake manifold; a manifold highly sought after by most DSM tuners looking for some minor gains.
The boost now flowed like tears from the faces of Argentine fans at the last world cup; GSC cams added to the mix and the car became monstrous.
33lbs of boost was heavy and soon took a toll on the stock unit, luckily for David, he had already acquired a turbo from Forced Performance to match the other FP parts already on the car, he told us; at an unbelievable deal. The FP equipment was much more capable that the original snail, hence, David decided it was time for a full forged internal rebuild. Following this were springs, retainers and also a clutch to handle more power. The car was also switched over to run Speed Density after this which made a big improvement in power having taken out the MAF. It was around this time that David opted to do the HID Projector retrofit using some Morimoto FXR 3.0 projectors for the improved lighting at night.” Did it myself and well worth the work !” he told Jamaican Tuner.
The gains were dramatic, the evolution pulled like never before. The additional power highlighted some inconsistencies; the Walbro 255 pump was swapped out for a 450 Ethanol Compatible unit to feed the FIC Bluemax 1250cc injectors. An AEM fuel pressure regulator and full stainless steel lines were added to accommodate the gas-guzzling appetite of the EVO III. A spark tech Coil on Plug system ensures that all this fuel gets lit-and for car guys, that’s exactly what “getting lit” is about.
Interior tid-bits include very gorgeous EVO VIII MR seats, MOMO wheel and a host of AEM gauges. Coupled with a flawlessly clean dash, one needs nothing more to enjoy the menacing capabilities of this silvered Mitsubishi.
While the R would be a great daily performer, David was craving power, and often these two are never found in the same galaxy. His goal is to create a reliable 500whp car with AC and all and possibly do a 10sec pass at the drag strip with full interior. I had laughed initially, but I’m not one to knock people’s dreams. The EVO III is very light and a lot is dependent on the driver’s ability, so how dare I. Besides, David says that he would be quite gratified by even a 10.99999983421 second pass, now that seems more plausible.