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- This old site is maintained for historic and technical reasons -

Mirage Tuning options


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Main Technical Links Page

 

Power Steering Removal
One way to remove your power steering


1996 Turbo 1.5 upgrade
Story about how it was done


Road Race Engineering
Has some very useful tech tips and they can
help you with those hard to find parts


SteveTek Labs
Explains how to improve the stock fuel system


Mitsubishi ECU theory
A good explaination about how the Mitsubishi computers work.
It also explains why resetting the ECU is not a good idea


Detonation
A good explaination about detonation and how to reduce it


Oil Filter Information
Information about which oil filters are
better and worse than the average


Oil Cooler/Filter Relocation Installation
Installation pictures of a Permacool
Oil Cooler/Filter Relocation kit on a 4G 1.8

Calculating Wheel Diameters
Here is information on calculating tire diameters


Database of rim weights
These can be used for a weight estimate


Mirage part weights
Here is a list I have made up showing how much
various parts on Mitsubishi Mirages weigh

 

NGK Spark Plug Info

How to read a spark plug and NGK part number info


2000 Mitsubishi Mirage 1.5 liter engine

1997+ 4G15 1.5 liter engine (this is a 2000)

 

Finding performance options for the Mitsubishi Mirages, Colt, Summits, and Lancers is
still a pain in the ass. Some Eclipse parts are interchangable and some performance parts
can be found in other countries. There is still hope for performance tuning these cars.

 

Initial Performance Upgrades:

First off, go to my Links page and check out the sites that sell upgraded intakes. Next, I would highly recommend at least picking up some decent performance tires. If you can afford it, pick up some light-weight rims too. Next, pick up some new springs and shocks/struts. This will help you keep the tires planted. There are now a couple companies selling coil over kits. There have been complaints about the quality of some coil-overs, so make sure they are the quality that you want before you buy them. Here is a page that I made up with examples of different Wheel and Suspension Systems.


Better spark plug wires would be another good purchase. NGK and Nology make some good wires and I am sure that there are some other good options out there. Take a look at the Eclipse engine picture at the bottom of this page. Moving the battery to the trunk would allow this kind of a cold-air setup. If you are going for Drag-race performance only, you might want to keep the battery up front for traction. Another performance option is a larger throttle body from RPW in Australia. They also have headers and many other performance parts check there often for new Mirage performance options (keep in mind that Mirages are also called Lancers or Colts in other countries.)

Here is one direction you can go for improved performance:

Get an better intake, larger throttle body (after-market or get yours bored out,) bore out where the throttle body mounts to the intake manifold, add headers and a full exhaust and you will have an engine that can breath much easier.

You can check out RPW's recommended Staged upgrades here. They also have some very good information on their website here: RPW Australia

Additional things you can do:

  • Get the head ported & polished, lighter valves, lighter valve retainers,and
    a valve job.
  • Install a performance cam.
  • Upgrade the internal parts to lighter and/or stronger parts
    (pistons, connecting rods.)
  • Lighten the flywheel.
  • Headers & Cat-back exhaust system.
  • Lighten, balance, and knife edge the crankshaft.
  • Overbore the cylinders to increase the engine size.
  • Install a turbo or higher compression pistons.
  • Install a nitrous system.

A quick note on tire sizes:

I wanted to see if 205/17R 35 (17" rims with 35 series tires) would fit. So I bought some 205/15R 65 Yokohamas. Along with the shorter springs and cut bump stops, the car rubbed pretty bad on the front and rear bumper mounts. I bent them up which fixed the rubbing, but eventually broke two of the mounts. I also rolled the fenders. I believe that a back spacing of more than 36 would fix part of the problem. But, 16x7" rims with 40 series sport tires will save you the head ache. Also, a 17" with 195+ wide and 35+ series tires will slow your car down because of the larger diameter. But, it looks great if you get it to work... Keep in mind that my Mirage is lowered 2 1/2" - 3". Otherwise 17" rims would not be a problem. You can remove the plastic inner-fender well for more clearance if you need to.

Automatics vs. 5-Speeds:

Automatics need more low end torque. 5-Speeds can trade off some of the torque for high-end horsepower. If you have an automatic and plan to raise the power, then install a transmission cooler. Also, automatics can get transmission upgrades from shops like Level-10 or Dunrite-Converters. 5-Speed owners should consider a lightened flywheel and performance clutch. One of the first upgrades that a 5-speed owner should perform is replacing the transmission gear oil. Recommended upgrades are GM Synchromesh (highly recommended and pretty cheap, the local General Motors dealer should have it in stock) Redline synthetic, BG synthetic, AMSIOL synthetic,

Suspension Upgrades:

For upgraded shocks and struts, Koni, GAB, and KYB make upgraded replacements.
There may be others. For springs, there is Sprint,Arospeed and Eibach.
Coilovers, there is Arospeed, Ground Control, and Tein. Strut tower bars, there is HP Racing, Arospeed, OBX, GAB, and RalliArt. Keep an eye open for other brands out there and try to not buy the weak bars.

Click to check out Dave's car

Weight Distribution:

There are a few different ways that you might want to adjust your weight distribution for better performance. You can seek out lighter parts such as racing seats and carbon fiber hoods. Another option is to relocate weight, like moving the battery to your trunk. One of the last options you will want to use is adding weight to specific parts of the car to increase traction and cornering ability. Check out this quick link that shows an example Mirage weight and explains what is important.

Preparing your Mirage for a drag race:

Never loose track of what you are doing. Plan ahead and stick to your launch technique, shift points, tire pressures, etc... You can always try a different style later. Here are some general preparations that should be done to any car.

1. Perform a tune-up. New oil/filter, clean/replace air filter, new cap & rotor, fuel filter, spark plugs/wires, use a big-ass bottle of fuel injector cleaner.

2. Remove the floor mats

3. Remove the glove box (don't leave your registration and proof of insurance at home...)

4. Remove everything out of the trunk. Spare tire, jack, carpet, SPEAKER BOX.

5. You can easily remove the bottom of the rear seat by pulling the two levers under it and lifting the seat cushion.

6. I always roll up the windows, fold back the side mirrors, fold down the passenger seat, and lower the antenna.

7. Find a good tire pressure for your car. This depends on the wheel setup, outside temperature, weight of car, etc... Usually 35lb is a good start. Use trial & error. Note: If you drop the pressure too low and drive home you can kill your tires.

8. Inflate your rear tires to their max pressure. This makes for less rotating resistance. Use good judgement or consult your tire shop if unsure.

9. Make sure that your wheels are aligned. You will spin if your front tires are not flat on the ground (camber).

10. Remove the wheel covers (sometimes referred to as "hub caps") if you have them.

11. (obvious) Don't take a passenger!

12. Some of you might be looking for that extra 5-10hp bad enough. You can remove the belt from your air-conditioning compressor and power-steering pump. Some models are not able to do this.

13. (not recommended) Remove the entire interior. This would take many hours to put back together and is not worth it. Buy a 50hp nitrous kit instead if you are this determined to win.


Turbo 1st Generation Eagle Talon Motor

   
 
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