The Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution, and to a lesser extent, the Lancer Ralliart, are two cars that don’t need any introduction here at MotorAuthority. Together with their closest rivals, the Subaru Impreza WRX and Impreza WRX STI, are some of the best performance bargains out there and anyone who purchases one is in store for a load of fun--and possibly going to lose some points on their license.
That’s because the Lancer Ralliart, which is priced from around $27k, comes packing a turbocharged four-cylinder engine with loads of tuning potential. In stock form the engine already outputs 237 horsepower and 253 pound-feet of torque, and matched to its dual clutch transmission and all-wheel drive system offers a very unique option in this segment.
Remember, this powertrain setup is essentially a detuned version of the one in the high-performance Lancer Evolution and at this price level we think it’s a bargain. It also gets the Lancer Evolution’s lightweight aluminum hood with special air ducts to keep the turbo cool, as well as an aggressively styled front bumper and dual exhaust.
Additionally, there's also a Ralliart Sportback model available, which is essentially a hatchback variant of the Ralliart sedan.
However, if you can afford the extra 10 grand or so for the Lancer Evolution, go for it. This is the 10th generation of Mitsubishi’s rally-fighter tuned for the street. It packs the same 4B11 turbocharged 2.0-liter engine found in the Lancer Ralliart but with output tuned to 291 horsepower and 300 pound-feet of torque.
The top of the range model is the Lancer Evolution MR, followed by a new entry for 2011, the SE
, and the GSR rounding out the range. All are great buys and we recommend either the six-speed manual or TC-SST dual clutch unit.
Both cars come with Mitsubishi’s rally-bred all-wheel drive system dubbed Super All-Wheel Control or S-AWC for short. Key features include an active center differential, a helical gear front differential, and active yaw control.
Standard features on the Lancer Ralliart include fog lights, a hands-free entry system, a trip computer, automatic climate control, Bluetooth connectivity, leather trim, and aluminum pedals. Upgrade to the Lancer Evolution and you also get improved suspension, nicer wheels and HID headlamps.
Inside, there’s a pair of sporty bucket seats, Recaros on the Lancer Evolution, 60/40-split rear seats, a generous trunk and a great standard sound system. A hard-drive based navigation and music storage system remains an option.
Head over to TheCarConnection
for a more detailed look at the 2011 Mitsubishi Lancer Ralliart and Evolution.