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Why did they make this thing look like a Pontiac in the front? is the scoop:



Originally, we were told to wait for the New York auto show for yet another special edition of the Mitsubishi Lancer to be unveiled. Turns out, Mitsu couldn’t help themselves.

Instead of a Big Apple debut, the automaker used the Windy City showcase its 2004 Lancer Ralliart edition. The Ralliart, Mitsu’s latest attempt to go after the market occupied by the likes of the Honda Civic Si, Ford SVT Focus and Nissan Sentra Spec V, takes the place of the OZ Rally as the company’s souped-up Lancer.

The special edition vehicle, named after Mitsubishi’s World Rally Championship team, gets a new 2.4-liter sohc four-cylinder powerplant with variable valve timing, capable of 160 horsepower and mated to a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic. The car will start under $18,000, according to Mitsubishi, and hit showrooms this fall along with the reskinned ’04 Lancer.

The Ralliart package employs a number of upgrades over the stock Lancer and the OZ edition, and represents Mitsubishi’s best effort yet at running with its high-revving pocket-rocket competition. Enhancements include a revised front end, a standard spoiler, 16-inch aluminum alloys and wider tires than the base Lancer. Other subtle exterior styling changes have also been made to the Ralliart version.

Suspension gets a tune-up as well, with stiffer dampers, a red front strut-tower bar and a bulkier rear stabilizer bar. Inside, Mitsubishi has planted a set of specialized seats that can be found in the vehicle’s Japanese-spec sibling, the Lancer Evolution GT-A. Ralliart logos can be found covering the seats and the vehicle’s rear deck lid.

2001 CL Type S
2001 Lexus RX300 Silversport
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