The Pajero Evolution, or ‘PajEvo’ as it’s sometimes called, is a particularly interesting car, and one of those rare vehicles which we like to discuss on Classic Register. Many of the cars that attract high levels of enthusiast attention are those that have a close link to motor racing, such as 'Group A' production touring and rally cars. In this context, few people turn their minds to SUVs, and perhaps that explains why the Pajero Evolution has flown under the radar to some extent. Considering these cars have a formula that we believe should justify a 'future classic' status, they are available at very reasonable prices today.
This particular car shown sold through Silverstone Auctions UK in February 2016 under their 'Race Retro Classic Car' category, and concluded with a winning bid of £11,250. We’ve certainly seen prices lower than this, with several listed on Trovit Cars starting at around £7,000. In the case of such a unique car that makes use of several customised and expensive components, it may be best to pay a bit more for something that’s been well maintained and has a reputable service history. Few details have been revealed regarding the condition of this particular car, and we are unaware of the mileage. The seller has confirmed the vehicle has a ‘good’ service history, and we can only assume that with a sale price of over £11,000, the car represents a well-kept example.
Having viewed prices of these cars in several markets, they are an absolute steal for what they represent. Many other homologation cars available with similar production numbers often fetch prices between two and ten times what the Pajero asks. Further, there really isn’t anything quite like it for the same price out there. If you wanted something similar, you’d probably have to search through rally24.com, where you can find “T2 Class” ex-race cars. Still, we think the Pajero Evolution would be the best one to have.
The peculiarity of the Pajero as a SUV in the context of ‘homologation’ may be behind a lack of market for these cars, but we’re still surprised they haven’t received greater interest, with low prices seen in the UK, Japanese and Canadian markets in particular. Prices in Australia are difficult to gather, as despite the suitability of the land, there are only a handful of cars there, and far fewer than have been imported in the UK or Canada. Whatever market you’re in, it’s surely a good time to get one, and we can’t foresee prices falling much further from where they currently stand.
In terms of body modifications, the Evolution received redesigned front and rear bumpers. The bumpers are aerodynamically integrated into the extra-wide fender flaring panels and side-skirts, giving the car a unique stance. The revised grille, bonnet scoop, sump guard and rear top/side spoilers make it easily distinguishable from the standard Pajero. To save weight, the bonnet, sump guard and side-skirts are made from aluminium. Three colours were originally available; Satellite Silver (as applied to this car), Sofia White, and Passion Red. It is believed that 1000 each of the Satellite Silver and Sofia White cars were produced, whilst only 500 were painted red. This would explain the difficulty in finding red examples, and we would expect that they would attract a premium price.
Inside the car, the Evolution benefited from the 1997 model year interior upgrade which saw a slightly revised dash and steering wheel, incorporating dual airbags. The Evolution model had carbon finish inset panels around the instruments, air vents and central controls, which again set it apart and provides a good contrast with the standard Pajero dash. The steering wheel on the Evolution was leather wrapped, and the car also received cloth Recaro seats, with several unique trim patterns available. Those seats were unique to the Evolution model.
|Engine||Naturally aspirated 3.5l DOHC 24-valve (VVTI) MIVEC V6 (206kw/276hp).|
|Transmission||5-speed manual or 5-speed automatic with tiptronic function.|
|Suspension||4-wheel independent (rear multi-link, front double wishbone).|
|Brakes||4-wheel ventilated discs with ABS system.|
|Driveline||Super-select system (allowing RWD / 4WD high and low range).|
If you have one of these rare Evolutions, please sign up and add yours to Classic Register! For more images and information about these cars, we recommend looking at the Mitsubishi motorsport website, or their Japanese archive site for the Evolution.
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