Getting rid of the Bling to Give it Some Sting, Project Mistubishi EVO VIII



Project Evo Volk RE30 Wheels
This cutaway of the RE30 show how forging allow thin cross sections of the wheel for light weight without sacrificing strength

These properties allow the use of thinner cross sections using less material.  Since the material can be much thinner a forged wheel has the potential to be much lighter than a cast wheel of the same size.  By forming the wheel into its final shape with a die, no machining other than for the backspacing controlling mount pad, the center bore and the lug bolt circle is needed. When fewer processes are needed in the production of the wheel, variability from wheel to wheel is reduced.  This gives the potential for improved balance and less run out for each wheel, reducing the chances for wobbles and shakes.

Another plus is that if a forged wheel is hit hard, it tends to bend where a cast wheel tends to crack.  This is much less of a catastrophic “soft” failure mode.  Usually wheel forgings are reserved for the highest level of racecar or very expensive road cars. We can attest to Volk’s toughness with their TE37 lasting many time longer than any other wheel on our race cars.  We obtained a set of 18 x 9.5” RE30’s with a 28mm offset and a bronze anodized finish, something much more race oriented than the bling bling chrome wheels.  The 9.5” wide RE30s are 1.5” wider than stock.  This width will help keep our tread flatter on the road.

Race ready wheels require race ready tires and Nitto came to our aid with a set of their ultra sticky R-Compound NT01 tires.  Although it is a race ready R-compound tire, the NT01 is designed and marketed not as an all out gumball qualifying tire but, as a high value race and track day tire for the serious grassroots enthusiast.  This sounds a lot like us. The NT01’s tread compound is formulated to last through many heat cycles and provide a decent amount of wear.   This allows us to use the tire for street/ track use, which is ok because we don’t put a lot of miles on project EVO.  It’s not our primary source of transportation eventhough we could drive it daily.  The NT01 features a W performance rating for use up to 168 mph continually.  Its carcass has hard bead fillers in the sidewalls to help steering response, a rayon carcass and nylon cord wrapped dual steel belts help insure dimensional stability of the tire under high speeds and load.  The tires feature a unique asymmetrical tread pattern which maximizes the treads contact patch putting lots of rubber on the road with minimal squirm.

Since we got rid of the Veilside kit, we were in the market for something new.  Our idea is to build the ultimate all around EVO and we wanted a kit that was functional and race proven with styling that was race inspired.  We found what we wanted in the Varis Type S kit.  This is a very complete kit consisting of a new front end with an air dam, a splitter, carbon air guides for the oil cooler and carbon fiber canards.  A new rear bumper is also part of the kit featuring venting for the rear wheel well areas with a carbon ground effects diffuser and carbon vortex generators.  The kits side skirts feature air spillover lips and a carbon bottom to prevent air from curling under the car. We also ordered carbon wide body fenders with carbon air guides. We are going to install the entire kit later in this project after we finalize the Intercooler and exhaust plumbing but for now we installed just a few components.

What impressed us is that the Varis kit should actually produce a good amount of downforce from what we know about race car aerodynamics.  Varis kits are used extensively in GT, Group N and Super Taikyu racing in Japan and the designs have evolved though feedback from racing teams.

Project Evo Varis Carbon Fiber Hood
The Varis hood surprised us with its precise fit and details like this louvered water shield in the vent which allowed air to flow but diverted water away from the engine

For now we installed the vented carbon fiber hood, the carbon decklid with rear spoiler and the GT wing.  We were very impressed with the fit and quality of construction of the Varis parts.  They fit perfectly with no need to modify them or use any sort of special fitment.  The carbon hood had a functional vent to help improve airflow though the intercooler and radiator.  The hood vent encourages airflow over the top of the car also helps improve the effectiveness of the front air dam and increases downforce.  The Varis hood had an under reinforcement which made the entire hood both strong and stiff.  This strength made use of the stock hood latch not a problem.  Most flimsy cheap carbon hoods require the use of hood pins as they are too flexible for the use of the stock latch and the force of closing the hood cracks the carbon. The hood had a louvered water shield for the vent which was easily removable for racing use where maximum air flow though the vent is desirable.  The water shield is also great a great feature to keep water from dumping straight on the motor in rain or when washing the car.  We have never seen an aftermarket carbon hood of such quality from any company before.

Project Evo Varis Carbon Fiber Hood
The sturdy underframe supported the latch and gave the hood enough stiffness so it could easily use the stock latch without cracking. This hood is as well finished underneath as it is on top!

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