The tenth version of Mitsubishi's iconic Lancer Evolution models has a new performance flagship model to top its range, the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X FQ-400.
The Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X FQ-400 is the fastest and most extreme version of Mitsubishi's motorsport derived machine. With 403bhp and 387lb.ft of torque on offer from its advanced, lightweight aluminium 2.0-litre turbocharged MIVEC (Mitsubishi Innovative Valve timing Electronic Control) petrol engine the FQ-400 is able to reach 62mph from standstill in an estimated 3.8 seconds before reaching an electronically limited 155mph - where permitted.
Ensuring all the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X FQ-400's power is put to good use is Mitsubishi's sophisticated Super-All Wheel Control (S-AWC) four-wheel-drive system which appropriates power to the wheels that can best use it, giving the FQ-400 quite sensational cross-country performance.
The S-AWC system combines a number of electronic systems that both enhance the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X FQ-400's performance and safety, with Active Stability Control and Active Centre Differential, Active Yaw Control and Sport ABS giving the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X FQ-400 incredible cornering ability, traction and grip. Depending on the conditions the driver can select the most suitable set-up for the S-AWC system, three choices - Tarmac, Gravel and Snow - being offered via the wheel-mounted button and displayed in the central instrument binnacle.
A heavily vented bonnet helps heat escape from the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X FQ-400's turbocharged engine and a new lightweight composite front bumper incorporating Mitsubishi's trademark 'Jet Fighter' grille features carbon-fibre elements on its leading edges. Additional lighting and High Intensity Discharge (HID) lights mark out the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X FQ-400's nose, its added aggressiveness further enhanced by a 30mm drop in front ride height. Composite side skirts, a re-styled rear bumper with a carbon fibre diffuser, a rear wing incorporating a gurney strip and a roof-mounted 'Vortex Generator' all help manage airflow and cooling.
Despite its obvious focus the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X FQ-400's suspension offers compliance thanks to the Eibach Springs and Bilstein Shock Absorbers, the FQ-400's usefulness as a daily driver not compromised overly thanks to Mitsubishi's chassis tuning. The stiff bodywork not only provides an exceptionally rigid platform for the suspension to work, but excellent crash-worthiness, the Lancer Evolution X attaining a five-star score in Euro NCAP's independent crash tests.
Standard equipment for the range-topping Lancer Evolution X model is comprehensive, the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X FQ-400 coming with Bluetooth hands-free telephone connection, a CD-tuner with 30 Gig hard drive, DVD satellite navigation and privacy glass. Convenience features like remote central locking, automatic headlamps and windscreen wipers increase the FQ-400's ease of use, the huge performance it offers not coming at the expense of usefulness. Like its Lancer Evolution X relatives it features comfortable seating for five as well as a usefully sized boot, the FQ-400 bringing all the convenience of the standard saloon car it's based upon - but with explosive performance potential.
The Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X FQ-400 is a standard setter, with performance that's the measure of any rival and many exotic sports and supercars costing many multiples of its £49,999 list price. Available from June 2009, the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X FQ-400 is covered by a three year / 36,000 mile warranty.Published 27 May 2009