500kW of EVO IV Nostalgia

Enthusiasts world wide still hold a soft spot for the EVO IV, simply because it saw many firsts in the generations of Lancers that had come before it. The factory made some big design changes to the EVO IV platform. The biggest of the changes was to rotate the engine and trans-axle 180 degrees. The idea being; it would drastically reduce the torque steer coming from the front drive, and in turn would also greatly improve the overall balance of the car. Both front and rear differentials were upgraded from the previous EVOs, with the introduction of the friction type LSD in the rear. With the a re-balanced platform pushing a lot more drive to the rear wheels, it’s no wonder they took the world by storm.

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1996 saw the release of the EVO IV, along with the new JDM gentleman’s agreement of 260HP from factory. Although, saying this EVO IV is not so factory would be an understatement. Looking at it from the outside one could not so easily identify it as a big power car; a sleeper. This EVO IV project has come a long way since its inception. And although the power figures have been growing, the car has stayed true to its all-rounder-steet-sleeper soul. With great focus on keeping the package balanced through-out its evolution.
Knowing we were about to reach the 500kW mark, we decided to document the project as it sits today.

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In keeping to the true street sleeper specification, comfort is always of most importance. So creature comforts such as air-con; is still in! Interior; still completely fitted! The rest, well that’s where it gets interesting.

  • The engine is a 4G64 out of a Mitsubishi Gallant.
  • De-stroked 2.2L for reduced rod angle and faster stroke rotation.
  • Variable Cam Head out of an EVO 9.
  • Twin fuel rails.
  • 8x 1000cc injectors.
  • Motec M800 ECU.
  • Running on E85, or pump 98 thanks to the flex tune.
  • Hollinger 6 speed sequential gearbox.
  • Brembo big brake kit.
  • KAIKETSU R200 rear diff conversion, more on this below.

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When on the Dyno, Chea is constantly watching all the engine vitals live on his laptop. Some of the parameters Chea is keeping an eye on are air/fuel ratio, air temps, oil temps, oil pressure, fuel pressure, exhaust pressure/temps, coolant pressure/temps, the engine knock, and fuel trims. By watching over these Chea can determine which parameters can be pushed further to produce more power. Whether it be more fuel, more air, or more boost and where.

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Upon completing the first run we hit a rich and healthy 485.5kW @ 7440rpm. Most importantly at this point Chea will go over the Dyno log recording, checking for any anomalies that may have occurred during the run. The software also allows us to save previous Dyno runs, which in turn allows us to compare all the runs against each other. Noticing some room for improvement in the ignition, and cam timing; Chea runs the EVO on the Dyno once again.

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The second run yielded a much healthier and smoother power curve. Producing a respectable 494kW @ 7728rpm. As the Dyno software records all the data in real time, it’s impossible to see all the parameters during the run. So once again Chea will analyse the data log in close detail, checking for any anomalies. Our main concern for this particular car was coolant pressure as car had previously popped a Welch plug in the pressurized cooling system. But since revising the sealing on the engine it has been faultless.
Where we had previously only been able to push engine to about 8,000rpm/30psi/450kW, we could now push to 9,000rpm on the same boost without issues. Chea finds a little more room for improvement in the injection timing and fuel timing. Off we go for a third run. 

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The third, and to be final Dyno run; yields a great result with 501.9kW @ 7633rpm. Today our main aim was to try and extend our power band, and peak power closer to the 8000rpm range. The trick is do so with minimal boost increase, rather to focus on tuning the cam, ignition, and fuel timing.
A
t the end of it, we had 673hp at all four wheels. Taking drive-train loss into account, we estimate about 750hp at the flywheel. The turbo is rated to 800 flywheel hp, so we estimate that we are still about 50hp short of our target output.
Our next step is finding that missing 50hp! 

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With great power come great diff problems. All EVO owners, from 1996 all the way through to now, know that their OEM rear diffs can only take so much power and punishment. Combine a hard driving style with anything over 350kW and you’re going to have issues. Thankfully, we have a solution for all the big power EVO builds out there!
Powertune were contracted to fit this new developmental product that was designed and made by KAIKETSU Engineering. The R200 Rear Diff. Our initial thoughts have been nothing but positive. It really is an excellent product and a GREAT solution for the entire EVO community.

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The R200 rear diff comes factory nested in a lot of NISSANS, the infamous GTR being one of them. It is safe to expect that the rear end of the EVO fitted with the R200 diff is good for a 1000hp at the wheels, as this is what we commonly see with GTRs.

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With the KEIKETSU R200 fitted snug in the rear we are confidently increasing the power output, all the while mechanically the engine and drive-line are rock solid. Prior to the 501kW tune, the EVO had run a 10.5 @ 138mp/h. Since then it has recorded a 10.1 @ 147mp/h on street radial tyres. A clear improvement, and a feature we’ll be bringing you in the near future.

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Looking forward, It’s now on us to find and squeeze out that last 50hp. From the very beginning of the project the aim was to create the ultimate street car, with room to keep developing as the latest technology became available. The owner has goals of running a 9 second pass in a true street-trim car, running street 215/45 tyres. Further goals are to then make a carbon copy of the car. With the exception of it being in full race trim and specifically setup to compete in national Tarmac Rally events. Be sure we’ll keeping close tabs, bringing you all the latest right here.