With a larger engine, an upgraded suspension meant for twisties, and a slick-shifting 5-speed, these Ralliarts are drivers’ cars on a budget.
Browsing Facebook marketplace in my area and I came across a 2004 Mitsubishi Lancer Ralliart sedan with just 140,800 miles for a not-to-shabby price of $4,000.
The Ralliart was the unloved stepchild, one rung below Mitsubishi’s rally-bred Lancer Evolution. With a larger but non-turbocharged engine, most people knew they’d be kicking themselves in the behind if they didn’t pony up the extra $10-15K for the Evo VIII.
Anyway, here’s a gallery of photos of said Lancer Ralliart below.
Sold for two years between 2004-2006, at $18,570 MSRP, these upgraded factory Lancers commanded a $3,500 premium over a base.
But, for that much more, you got a lot including
- The larger 2.4L MIVEC 4G69 with 162 HP and 162 lb-ft
- 5-speed manual standard
- Ralliart aero all around
- a factory-tuned sport suspension (with stiffer and firmer springs and shocks, a stiffer front anti-rollbar, a front strut tower brace, and a more responsive power steering setup)
- Slightly lower ride height
- Exclusive 16-inch wheels
- Rear discs
- a short shifter from the Lancer Evolution VIII
- UK Evo VII seats (note the orange flecks)
- and smoked headlights/ Alteeza style tails/ fog lights
“…lively and willing on a meandering back road as any of the small factory hot rods: crisp, decisive, and competent, with no discernible penalty in ride quality.“
As testament to C&D, watch The Smoking Tire’s one take featuring a Ralliart below.
TST concluded if you need a fun beater that’s easy to wrench on with a solid chassis and is a blast on a canyon road, the Lancer Ralliart is hard to beat.
Back to our particular example, this one’s missing those 16 inch alloy wheels and has what looks like value-spec tires on steel wheels.That’s probably what you’ll upgrade first.
Other than that, simply based on photos, this Ralliart looks like a real gem. There are no major dings, dents or damage, it looks fairly well kept, and the mileage is not too high.
If, after a comprehensive look over and test drive, everything seems OK, for $4,000, in this highly competitive used car market, this Lancer Ralliart is hard to beat.
And since this is FB Marketplace, knocking off a couple hundred when negotiating is par for the course.
What do you think? For that much, would you pull the trigger on this fun little 5-speed?