RSSAll Entries in the "Featured" Category

Time for another oil change for the Lancer GTS

Time for another oil change for the Lancer GTS

As many of you know from my old blog, I change my oil at normal intervals.  But now that my car has passed its warranty threshold, I am not changing my oil at extended intervals.  There are very few oils that can do this.  The one I have relied on for many years is the Mobil 1 Extended performance oil.  I have many cars that I go 20k, 25k or 28k (kilometers) for oil changes.  I send the oil out for analysis and everything is fine and dandy in terms of wear.  Now with my older cars, oil consumption tends to happen a little more so frequent top ups during this extended period are needed.  The other day on facebook I was asked if I had to change my oil filter mid way.  My answer was no.  I rely on Royal Purple or K&N oil filters which have the capacity and filtration that I need for extended intervals.   For my lancer, I have gotten up to about 22k (kilometer) oil changes without a problem or oil consumption.  My weapon of choice is Mobil 1 Extended performance.  I purchase it when I make my USA boarder run from Toronto and bring back a few 5Qt jugs from Walmart. http://www.walmart.com/ip/Mobil-1-Extended-Performance-5W-30-Full-Synthetic-Motor-Oil-5-qt/17128876

A good investment which I can pass on 1 or 2 normal interval changes without sacrificing performance and wear protection.


Till the next oil change.

Evo X & Ralliart Rear and Front Tow Hooks

Evo X & Ralliart Rear and Front Tow Hooks

 

Not too long ago I started to notice the trend of tow hooks coming in strong for 2011 and even stronger in 2012.   A good friend over at MOVEOVER Motosports is cranking out these quality pieces at an affordable price.  Jump on it 😉

***Rear Tow hooks are for Single Exit Exhaust only!***

MOVE OVER Motorsports has released their new line of Fully Functional Tow Hooks for the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X and the 09+Ralliart. The Rear Tow Hook kit works with Single Exit Exhausts only. The Rear Tow Hook Kit mounts directly to the OEM Tow Loop and allows for easy installation of a MOVE OVER – Password:JDM – or BENEN rear tow hook. Any track car or daily driver can benefit from this Tow Hook setup.

MOVE OVER Tow Hooks and Mounting Kits are:

Made with 3/8″ 6061 T6 Aluminum

Waterjet cut to ensure a precision fit and finish

Includes quality Stainless Steel Mounting Hardware

Every Tow Hook is Inspected, Deburred, and Sanded

Powdercoating also available

Ask about MOVE OVER Motorsports custom waterjet cutting and designs

Contact Moveovermotorsports@hotmail.com

or thru Facebook @ MOVE OVER Motorsports http://www.facebook.com/pages/MOVE-OVER-Motorsports/246742542035629?ref=tn_tnmn

 

 

 

100k sales projection for 2012 all riding on the Lancer AWD

100k sales projection for 2012 all riding on the Lancer AWD

Many of you know that the 2012 lancer is coming with an AWD option.  While it was my hope that Mitsubishi would make this standard.. its still a step in the right direction.  Main point is, the direct competition Subaru already has this equipped.  The decision was made last year to port the Lancer CVT version over to a non-performance AWD.  The logic for Mitsubishi was to meet the objective of enhanced driver safety and capability in adverse conditions.   When speaking to my contacts within Mitsu HQ in Japan, the official position was not to enhance performance for the lancer.  The Lancer is in its 4th year of production and a facelift or redesign may be explored.

So where do that leave those in the aftermarket / enthusiast community?  Unfortunately those looking to get into this car for performance and thrill seeking are out of luck.  There are no engine power enhancements.  Mitsubishi went this route because the CVT is an extremely reliable transmission.  More so than their traditional automatics and even their 5 speed transmissions.  Warranty claims and failures have continued to be low and below industry standards.  Running with a CVT does come with some negatives which Mitsubishi acknowledges.

1.  You can not  tow with a CVT.  Due to the nature of the CVT’s design, towing is not recommend and remains one of the only ways that you can harm it.  So this kills the idea of using this car to take your gear up to the cottage on those summer weekends.

2. CVT have a 5% power penalty.  CVT’s by design generate a natural vibration that is cancelled out by a software program that limits input tq.  Basically counteracting this vibration.  As a result.  Your not exactly getting the HP / TQ numbers to the wheels that you expect.  However, this is countered by the fact that there is no shifting required like in a 5 or 6 speed manual transmission.  This is what keeps the CVT and Manual versions of the Lancer neck and neck in 0-60 times.  I was

I was initially concerned with this proposed idea when I hear about last year but the fact that Mitsubishi is mating this transmission to a 2.4 vs. the 2.0, makes me sleep easy at night.

3. The third point that I raised with Mitsubishi was that the use of the SE AWD is going to lead to a hell of a lot of confusion in the aftermarket community in terms of production of parts.  See he is the slight problem. Previously only the GTS had

Question is, will it sell.  Mitsubishi Japan and North America think they will continue to increase sales by offering more refined products.  In the next few years, Mitsubishi will be phasing in new products that will add to the reduced line up changes.  USA production plants have stopped making the Eclipse and Endevour to make way for new cross over and possible mini vehicles.

I view this AWD update as step in the right direction.  But it was my hope that they would go all the way and allow for a 5 speed manual version.  This is the same plight Mitsubishi Ralliart 09+ owners are in.  The community is crying out for an Ralliart with a 5 speed manual version.  Now its no secret, when your going to do some serious playing in the  sand box of life, you certainly want to do it with a good sold 5 speed transmission.  The 2013 planning has already been solidified and will be released sometime in the early spring of next year.  Fingers crossed :)

Subaru WRX will go its own way:  Mitsubishi / Subaru Cold War renews

Subaru WRX will go its own way: Mitsubishi / Subaru Cold War renews

Image source: Motor Trend

Subaru has decided to spin the WRX off on its own.  These changes will be phased in within the next 3 years.  Subaru has dropped the gauntlet first, but some argue is Subaru even paying attention to Mitsubishi.  Some say the Mitsubishi EVO X won in its latest generation battle with the STI… .  While the war has gone on for years.  Does it make sense to keep going?   Your damn right it does..  main reason.  PRIDE!!! and if there is one thing about pride…. Logic isnt required.    Now since the WRX is more on the level of the Mitsubishi Ralliart, will Mitsubishi respond and send its second tier bomber in pursuit?  Inside sources say, “No…. well maybe…. well we have something in development”  No one will comment on the record.  Mitsubishi is at a cross roads.  And are still torn between two road maps for the future of the Mitsubishi EVO Program.  There is a “Very Green camp” and there is the “Kinda Green camp”  With the leaks that have come out saying the EVO X is no more was a bit premature, and the backlash that has come from that has given more weight to the side that wishes to continue the Mitsubishi EVO dynasty.  Japan HQ informants say a final decision of the road map is due for August 1st (it is unlikely any decision will be made public for sometime after that), and this will set the direction of Mitsubishi for the next 5 years.

Time will tell.

For those who care to know more about what Subaru is doing, read the break down over age Motortrend, (http://www.motortrend.com/future/future_vehicles/1107_subaru_wrx_to_go_its_own_way/index.html)

Winter Vs. Sailun "Ice Blazer" Tires

Winter Vs. Sailun “Ice Blazer” Tires

When it comes to winter in North America, it is always brutal and every region has something a little different.

* Buffalo – Snow fall so heavy that its easy to forget where you live
* Calgary / Edmonton – Snow fall like nobodies business, but the cold can hit you like a ton of bricks.
* Vancouver or Seattle – WET, Simply WET, spring comes early, but when its winter, you you can always expect to battle ice.
* Alaska and the Great White North – You never see mother earth, you drive over snow all winter long with no breaks.
* Toronto – Where you live in fear because your not sure if it will snow at all, or snow for days straight.  The weatherman is never right and should be fired.  The only two things you can count on is that the sun will come up and go down.

This is North America!  And these are the conditions a modern winter tire has to stand up to be worth their weight in gold.

EVOSOUL BENCHMARK

Over the past 3 years I was fortunate enough to evaluate over 5 winter tires for the Mitsubishi Lancer and the EVO X. My personal Lancer is 3 years old and already has 125000 km on it. Most of which is winter. The same can be said for the 300000km on my Mazda and Toyota each.

So when it comes to reviewing tires and testing them day in and day out. There are a few that impress me and rise to the top of my list. And so far the Sailun Ice Blazer is off to a good start.

So who is Sailun Tire?

Sailun Stock Image : Taken at one of their manufacturing facilitiesTo make a long story short Sailun is a Chinese tire company that has a strong position of authority when it comes to the manufacturing of tires within China and the greater Asia region. For years the core of their business has been light truck, transport truck, and specialty truck tires. Sailun has carved a name for themselves in that arena and now they seem to be bringing all their technology and experience to bear on the passenger car market.  So when you say Sailun…  Think big… think real big…

The Ice blazer is a first firm step for Sailun. I have put a lot of km’s on these tires and Toronto Canada seems to throw just about every type of winter weather at you. Let me share with you what I found.

Disclaimer – I purchased these tires with my own money shortly after my Firestone Winterforce tires suffered a fatal flat tire.

I took the death of my Winterforce tires very hard.  I pulled a huge triangle piece of  (slug) out of it and took the tire to the repair shop.  Took them 3 seconds to tell me that shop said that looked a little like this.
Then I had a tough decision to make.  Do buy replacement tire or go with a new set?   Well after sleeping on it, the decision was simple.  My tires were 3 going on 4 years old.  It didnt make sense buy one tire, or even two Winterforce tires to get me thru the winter.  Because the remaining tires would have to be dealt with sooner or later.  So I made the decision to to jump into a new set of tires.  And after favorable comments by the global online community and some of my peers, I decided to make the plunge into Ice Blazers.
Tire Type Analysis
The Sailun Ice Blazer is what I call a “WEDGE Type” winter tire.
Other well known “Wedge Type” tires include  Hankook I*Pike W409 and General Tire Altimax Arctic.
Now its important not to judge a book by its cover.  Its very easy for people to look at a tire and say wow that looks really good or really bad.  But tire design is much more than that.  The construction of the tire, the rubber blend / composition, as well as a design are all key to accurately assessing a tires worth.
When it comes to the Ice Blazer, it turns out to perform just as good as its industry peers and provide a surprise or two.  Here is what I found.
Dry Performance
Dry Grip / Sound / Feel & Comfort
The Ice Blazer performs very well on dry.  While I dont recommend driving winter  tires at the extremes, it is important that I share with you what i found.  The tire design allows you to take the car in hard cornering in dry yet below freezing temps.  It feels sticky and planted.  Its only when you increase the speeds do you begin to feel the squirmy nature of winter tires.   I have a co-worker who has this on a small subcompact hatch and he doesn’t hesitate to throw his lowered car around, regardless of weather.  There tires strangely enough do not generate much sound at the extremes.  Which translate into a lot of reserve grip.  Its not unusual to hear this bout winter tires having just the right level of softness and grip to perform well at the freezing point.  This tire does that at even colder temps. 4 / 5

The sound & vibration given off by the tires at low speeds are inline with winter tire expectation.  Sound at the higher speeds were impressive and on the lower side of the average winter tire experience.  4.5/5
The feel and comfort of the tire was one of the harder things for me to assess.  The ride or harshness of the tire was more on the firmer side of things.  Something that differs from most winter tire experiences I have had.  When it comes to winter tires, you almost expect to be pampered by a softer ride.  While its not the normal criteria for a winter tire.  It is a comfort level more a kin to a performance tire, something that feels out of place in a winter genre.   3.5 / 5

Overall Dry Winter Performance review 4/5
Wet Performance
Wet Grip / Hydroplaning Resistance
Wet grip was remarkably good.  Toronto has been full of rain that doesnt really form as snow and situations where a large snow fall is followed by above freezing temps and direct sun.  Resulting in lots of water in the streets.  The tire performs well when navigating the streets full of water.  Most of these opinion is based on mid to low speed use.  There is always that risk of black ice and I am not interested in wrapping my Lancer around a pole.  The tire does happen to handle itself in a good manner in normal to aggressive driving. 4 / 5

Hydroplaning Resistance was tested in depth and the tire does a good job of plowing threw standing water and getting that tire foot print planted on the ground underneath.   One of the tests to verify this is to still how much drag or pull to the right I get when venturing too close to puddles close to the curve.  I am happy to report that the car maintains its forward momentum and resists drags or pulls to the side. 4 / 5

Overall Wet Performance Review 4 /5

Snow Performance
Light & Deep Snow Bite / Ice
The Sailun Tires have the ability to surprise.  The light snow performance was fairly average and hard to quantify exception good.  When it comes to light snow, if the tire flunks that you should immediately remove the the tire.  In this case, the Ice Blazer tires performed inline with expectations.  The surprise comes from its high level of confidence in deep snow.   Was it the best tire ever, No.  But the fact that it rose to the occasion and actually lets you know its doing ts job, says a lot and should be noted.   Braking also comes in to be consistent and confidence inspiring.  Something proven to me when I turned the car over to other family members and the girl friend.   Something I dont do lightly.   But its good to know that other people can drive my car home and have little difficult in foul weather.  4 / 5

Ice traction is hard to quantify.  Ice testing on a skating rink is great like what you see with more advanced testing from tire rack.  But I measure tire performance on ice in the real world.  I drive my car and count how many instances where you realize your on black ice and get an idea of how the car and ABS system manages itself.   Some places are very easy to guess / anticipate.  Local side roads where there are stop signs are classic places where you can see tire slippage due to black ice covered by blowing snow.   I cant tell you how many times I see people approaching a stop sign at a high rate of speed, and then they mash the brake you see them coast straight thru the intersection yanking the wheel left and right as the wheels lock up.  In most cases these are the people with all seasons, but I have seen some winter tires perform not so good.  All that said, the Ice Blazer lives up to the name Sailun selected for it.   I saw an orderly engagement of ABS systems and very little curb creep. (where the car starts sliding to the right due to the ice and decline towards the curb.) 4 / 5

Overall Snow & Ice Performance Review 4 /5
X-Factor and Conclusion

Every product is going to have an X-Factor that makes this product unique.   In this case, the X Factor for the Ice Blazer is its price.  Now in today world, price speaks volumes.  But here, we have a tire that performs very well for the money you are spending.  The only other tire that has done this for me was the WinterForce tire.  Now yes the Winterforce tire was a little clumsy on ice, loud as a Pack Elephant on the highway, squirmy as hell.   But boy did it shine when you drive in fresh deep snow.  You never got stuck. EVER!  And it quickly rose to the top of my list as an underdog story.  Here, Sailun has captured that same winning underdog status without many of the negatives the winter force tire had.I would recommend this tire for anyone who is on a budget and looking for a tire that can do the job, and do it well.  I generally rate products pretty harshly, but this tire hangs on to a solid 4 /5 rating and I challenge anyone else to come to a different conclusion.

EVOSOUL SELECT

I Love Japan - I Love Mitsubishi

I Love Japan – I Love Mitsubishi

Take a Deep Breath... I won't let them hurt you

Take a Deep Breath… I won’t let them hurt you

The past two weeks have been lively with chatter about the death of the EVO brand as we know it.  Sadly, I have been in close contact with Mitsubishi Corp Japan and I knew about such talk 3 month ago.  While some of the fears have been at a fever pitch because of a few articles and quotes.  The fact of the matter is Mitsubishi’s road map remains clouded and there are in fact 3 different road maps under consideration.  While I can not go into detail just yet since its nothing official.  One of the paths are as radical as you can image and are a rapid and progressive departure from high end performance to more ECO centric designing with the hope that it makes it into the mainstream.  The only thing that prevents them from going down that path right now is that Mitsubishi would be essentially walking away from all the gains it has made technologically on the world engine front and be turning its attention on new technology.  All that said, for the mean time.  Take a chill pill and relax, your EVO isnt going anywhere and know one is going to kill it and drag the (body) chassis.  Don’t get me wrong, I am or have been alarmed for sometime.  With the decline of the Ralliart Development group (near closure)  its influence is limited over the majority of Mitsu HQ decision making.  But the more recent road map going around lately (unreleased and not what was leaked in late feb) may be exactly what Mitsubishi needs.  It provides balance and a clear road map for both major factions.

Time will tell.

EVOSOUL Evaluation of Sailun Tires (Preview)

EVOSOUL Evaluation of Sailun Tires (Preview)


One of the first products I am going to review for 2011 is Sailun.  I plan to review every single tire they have for passenger cars.  Lucky for me, sailun has a very straight forward line up of tires, that covers winter, summer, all season and touring all seasons.  I was pushing the review of the winter tire back until the fall of 2011.  But it just so happens my current Winter Tires (the Firestone Winter Force Tires) had the misfortune of a flat tire.

In the coming days I will reveal my thoughts about the Sailun Ice Blazer Tire.  After putting 4000 miles on the tire in a very short period of time, I was able to get a very consistent feel and understand of the tire.  I was well exposed to black ice conditions, blizzards, near freezing rain, and my favorite.  Bone chilling dry winter days.  Where its -21′C and nothing but salt on the ground from city workers doing overtime overkill on the roads.

Last Year's Mitsubishi Owners Days (2010)

Last Year’s Mitsubishi Owners Days (2010)

Last years Mitsubishi owners days was a blast.  It was first time at an MOD, and the experience was deep and meaningful.  I got a chance to meet Mitsu owners from all over the states.  I was besides myself to actually have people stop me and ask.  “Hey are you the EVOSOUL dude?”  It was great to talk shop with owners who have put the own distinct flavor / style into their car.   Below are a few pictures from 2010 MOD.  As soon as I get word of when 2011 MOD is, I will pass it own.


The Rivalry Continues

The Rivalry Continues

Mitsubishi Wins :)