The new Mitsubishi R5 rally car is based on none other than the Mitsubishi Mirage road car! Ralliart has developed the R5—the same high-performance division they used to build and oversee the running of Mitsubishi’s all-conquering Evo World Rally Cars—which means it has plenty of pedigree.
This Mirage knockoff has been designed for competition in what’s called the WRC2 championship. The WRC2 is open to production-based cars, including vehicles built to the R5 class rules, hence the Mitsubishi name.
Chief engineer Tomas Weng of Mpart AB (the official name for Ralliart Sweden) has worked his magic creating the R5. It’s powered by a 1.6-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol motor limited by an air restrictor to 276bhp (280PS) and 354lb ft of torque. This is sent to all four-wheels via a five-speed Sadev sequential gearbox.
“A great deal of thought has gone into the design and development of this car. We have kept it as simple and efficient as possible and have used as many Mitsubishi parts as we can,” said Weng.
“We are confident this will make the car straightforward to maintain and has enabled us to offer it at a competitive price. So far customer enquiries have exceeded our expectations and confirmed sales have already reached double figures.”
If this new car is a success for Mitsubishi, then we might just see a return to top level rallying. Move over, Subaru…