Mitsubishi Evoxrsv

They're both hardcore road racers, but while they share similar power-to-weight ratios, their approaches are very different. Roger Green discovers which is faster round the West Circuit

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y rr here were only eve- 422 righc-hand-dtive E46 M3 CSLs in the UK, which is a shame because on the road it is without doubt one of the very best of the breed, right up there with the various iterations of the original, iconic E30 M3. As a trackday machine, however, the CSL is arguably peerless, for despite the E30's exceptional fluidity and feel, its four-pot motor is, well, a bit sluggish on a circuit by today's standards. Yet while the 2003 CSl. is hardly current either, it can keep a 2010 M3 GTS honest - the newer car is only two seconds quicker around the Nordschleife.

Don't expect to pick up a CSL at a bargain price, though. You'll need around £27,000 for a tidy one today, which is about what it costs to buy a brand new Mitsubishi Kvo X RS. The RS is a true homologation special - the interior trim is cheap, there's no air- SPECIFICATIONS con and the central diffis a straightforward mechanical ^^^^HMMHni unit- and on the road it j^^^^HHlSjlS; changes direction with the kind of aggressive apex I^^^^^^Hjj^^P hunger that's been missing [^^^^^HffiiiPf for a while now in the [B^BMBHjlU

Kvo range. Best of all, the official UK supplier of the RS, the JRM Group, now offers the car with 360bhp (up from 276), and that gives it a power-to-weight ratii) that's almost identical to the CSL's (258bhp/ton versus 260). There's no doubt about it, this is a pair of road racers from the top drawer. Yet until now neither has been put through its paces at Bedford.

First up is the CSL, and it doesn't take long to understand the huge following this car has.

The howl from its straight-six would have you believe you're in a junior supercar. It's a soundtrack that reaches a menacing, yowling crescendo in the upper reaches of the rev band, and you'll treed to be wringing it there too, as it only truly gets going above 5000rpm. Low-down torque isn't the CSL's forte, though that wouldn't matter on track if the ¿ear ratios were short enough to keep it right in the hot zone. Unfortunately it doesn't quite manage this and

Ralsasa; SkvaVJaits â fania/mtj. Mstpzk&s to AJ

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