A top-end sedan manufactured by Mitsubishi Motors Corporation first appeared in 1992. It was commonly called as Lancer Evo, Evo or Lan-Evo. Up till now, ten different versions of Lancer evolution have been produced by Mitsubishi. Each of the versions is represented by a roman numeral. Almost all the versions of Lancer Evolution come with 2.0-L, turbocharged engines and all of them have 4-wheel drive system.
At first, the Lancer Evolution was designed solely for the Japanese market, but later the ‘grey import’ market showed some substantial demand for the Lancer Evolution that resulted in the launch of Evolution in United Kingdom and other European markets through Ralliart dealer network in 1998. Following the success of Subaru’s Impreza WRX in the US market encouraged Mitsubishi to launch their eighth generation Evolution in the United States in 2003.
Depending on the gentlemen’s agreement, the Japanese-specs vehicles were limited to publicize no more than 280 PS (206 kW; 276 hp). Evolution IV came with these specs. Each of the following versions of Evolution came unofficially with the power above publicized numbers. For instance, the Japanese Evolution IX introduced with 321 PS (236 kW; 317 hp) and the models introduced in the export markets especially in United Kingdom comes with an engine generating 411 PS (302 kW; 405 hp).
In 2007, the Evolution X or tenth generation model of Lancer Evolution was introduced in Japan. It was appeared in export markets a year later, i.e. in 2008.
The Japanese model comes with 4B11-type 2.0-L inline-4 turbo engine. It features an aluminum roof panel, front fenders and the rear spoiler frame structure. The different models offer in Japanese domestic market includes:
- RS: It features 16-inch tires, driver dual-stage airbag and a 7-speed manual transmission.
- GSR: It features a standard rear spoiler, 5-speed manual or 6-speed Twin Clutch SST transmission (magnesium paddle shifters on SST model), 245/40R18 Yokohama ADVAN A13C tire on Enkei 12-spoke high-rigidity cast alloy wheels or optional BBS lightweight alloy wheels, Brembo ventilated disc brakes, standard S-AWC 4WD system, driver and passenger dual-stage airbags, standard engine immobilizer with security alarm, a 7 inch LCD screen with an optional Mitsubishi Motors Communication System (MMCS), Rockford Fosgate premium sound system and keyless remote entry.
- GSR-Premium and GSR Tuned by Ralliart
North American Models
The engine used in North American models generates 295 PS (217 kW; 291 hp) at 6500 rpm and torque of 407 Nm (300 lb-ft) at 4400 rpm.
- GSR: Similar to Japanese version but has 5-speed manual only.
- MR: It features a 6-speed TC-SST transmission, suspension featuring Eibach springs and Bilstein struts, 18-inch BBS forged ally wheels, Xenon High-Intensity Discharge (HID) headlamps, color-keyed large rear spoiler, leather-suede seating, electronic keyless entry and starting system, steering wheel-mounted audio controls and Bluetooth hands-free cellular phone interface system with voice recognition.
- MR Premium: Features a Rockford Fosgate navigation/ Stereo with nine speakers.
- MR Touring (2010): Features different rear-lip spoiler, heated full-leather seats, upgraded interior trim and power-sunroof.
- SE (2010-11): featuring the qualities of all 2010 models.
The car is sold as Evolution X in UK.
- GS: Based on Japanese GSR and featuring Enkei wheels, 5-speed manual, Stereo radio/CD (MP3 compatible) and 6 speakers.
- GSR: Featuring HDD navigation with radio and music server, Rockford Fosgate premium audio, and additional iPod/MP3 input port.
- GSR SST (FQ-300, FQ-330): Features 6-speed TC-SST transmission with SST mode selection, i.e. normal, sport and super sport.
Different variants include: FQ-300, FQ-330, FQ-360 and FQ-400, where 300,330, 360 and 400 represent the engine output.
- GSR: It is offered with either a 5-speed manual (GSR 5 M/T) or 6-speed TC-SST transmission (GSR TC-SST).
- MR TC-SST: Features offered are: 6-speed TC-SST transmission, suspension featuring Eibach springs and Bilstein struts, 18-inch BBS forged alloy wheels, Xenon high-intensity discharge (HID) headlights, and MMCS.
Australian / New Zealand Models
The models offered in Australia and New Zealand generate 295 PS (217 kW; 291 hp) at 6500 rpm and 366 Nm (270 lb-ft) at 3500 rpm.
- GSR: Comes with either 5-speed manual or 6-speed TC-SST transmission.
- MR: features 6-speed TC-SST transmission, 18-inch BBS forged alloy wheels, two-piece front brake, aluminum rear spoiler, auto-leveling Xenon High-Intensity Discharge headlamps, MMCS, etc.
- Bathurst Edition: Bathurst Edition is an upgraded version of the Evolution X with an increased power of 336 PS (247 kW). It is offered with either a standard 5-speed manual or a quick-shifting TC-SST twin-clutch automatic.
Southeast Asian Models
In November 2008, Evolution X was launched in Philippines with following models:
- GSR: It has the same specifications found in US GSR model with 5-speed manual.
- MR: Except for Technology Package, it also shares the specs with US MR model featuring 6-speed TC-SST gearbox.
The Lancer Evolution X is introduced with a 6-speed twin-clutch SST transmission. It was acquired by the Royal Malaysian Police in 2009 for high-speed pursuits.