For years I’ve wanted to own an Evo – I like the technology, I like the unapologetic aggressive looks, I like the rally motorsport heritage – I suddenly found myself religiously checking online ads for Evo V. Almost an identical car to the VI except for some minor cosmetic and mechanical changes, the brutal looking version 5 has a nicer looking rear wing, rear light cluster and front bumper compared to the (IMO) bulbous VI. A good 5 also better fitted my budget than a slightly shoddy 6.
So having set about viewing Evos in various parts of the country, what I soon discovered was that some people’s definition of “mint” differs from mine! It was never going to be easy finding a 12 year old performance car in excellent condition but I knew there would be good examples out there it just requires patience and the will to travel to find the right car.
Viewing was not straightforward I found and subsequently was beaten to, a very nice Evo V with a forged NR Autosport engine, and also wasted a long trip to see another forged motor which ended up being a complete dog. This car was leaking oil all over the drive, had a snapped actuator a windscreen covered in chips and the worst thing, poor bodywork and chronic rust underneath.
Then my patience was rewarded, a car with traceable history through the MLR owners club, standard engine with “Stage 1” mods, but also extremely tidy bodywork and totally rust free underneath. The owner lived on the Isle of Wight and I can see why he sold it, theres barely any decent roads to stretch the car’s legs.
I was delighted after the long trip over to the island to see the car was exactly as described with fantastic bodywork, absolutely no rust, and a very tidy engine bay. The oil looked brand new and was quality Silkolene Racing oil. The service history was spot on with belts changed and servicing completed on time. I had found “the one.” Swift negotiations were dealt with, and I left in the Evo a very, very happy man. The only problem was finding reverse to get the car off the drive as the white Ralliart gearknob had no gear indicators!