Welcome to the 4G Lancer Project.

Last updated   08 Aug 2011.

Disclaimer: all technical information in these pages is believed to be correct to the best of my knowledge. Some is based on specifications obtained from third parties, Chrysler or Mitsubishi workshop manuals, or otherwise from work I have verified or done myself. No liability or warranty is assumed or offered, and you use it all at totally your own risk.

If you have a 93-96 Mirage / Colt / Lancer / Summit (2-door coupe or 4-door sedan), and WANT more performance, then there's no substitute for cc's. Most Colt / Summit models came with the 87hp 1.5L 4G15 engine, and a few with the 106hp 1.8L SOHC 4G93 that's fitted to the Mirage.

This site describes in exhaustive detail what's required to install a 2.0L 4G63 DOHC-16v engine. There's a few notes on installing the turbo 4G63 at present. The work is mostly the same, and involves significantly more cutting of the body and new metal part fabrication. In summary, this is what's required.

Is it worth it? Certainly! The 4G63 is rated at 135hp, 125ft-lbs of torque when new, up from the 87hp, 90 ft-lbs of the 4G15 when new. Performance is excellent (0-100 kph in about 10 seconds), but absolutely requires a decent brakes kit. A turbo engine conversion (190hp, 205 ft-lbs or more, 0-100kph in about 7 seconds) would require more work to the brakes and suspension.

Still want to do this? Then read on...


I 've been a rev-head for the last 35 years, and since my family has grown up, I have started another project to create a nice little toy for myself. In years past, I built and rallied Renault R8's, and a 72 Mitsubishi 1G Galant (see picture, 4G32 Saturn bored to 1750cc, twin 45DCOE Webers, #5 cam (about 150hp@7000rpm), 5-speed Scorpion/Sapphoro box, 4.625 diff, trailing arms, big brakes, 13x6 Globe Bathurst wheels) in Australia at club and state level. Never won anything much but had lots of fun and learned a lot about building hybrids, and My old 72 Galant, opposite lock in the forest, 1986. finding which bit will go with what to get the desired performance. I also enjoyed an '87 Ford Laser TX3 Turbo AWD for a year or so until it was stolen. Here in Canada, I owned an '88 Mazda 323 GTX Turbo AWD for six years, and an '89 Eagle Vista 4WD wagon for 11 years. When its 4G63B SOHC-8V 1997cc engine dropped an inlet valve, I researched, rebuilt and installed the 4G64B 2351cc SOHC-8V engine from a 91 Hyundai Sonata (a convenient donor that also used a Mitsubishi engine). It was actually quite a simple conversion, and the extra torque of the long stroke motor worked well. In retrospect, perhaps a 4G63 1997cc DOHC-16V model would have been better as the 4G64B runs out of puff a bit over 5000 rpm. But then again, the Vista wasn't a sports sedan ... I found a low milage 93 Colt LRV AWD wagon to replace the near terminally rusting Vista. I would have preferred the long wheelbase 4-door Expo (the successor to the Vista), but these were not sold in Canada, just in the USA.

 

Project aim:

Based on the 93-95 4G Colt / Mirage /Lancer Coupe 2 door, create a fun-to-drive sedan with spirited rather than maximum performance, using my experience with building rally cars. The original 4G15 or 4G93 engine and transmission is replaced with a 4G63 1997cc DOHC 16v. I purchased a 92 Talon as the donor car, plus a 93 Colt rolling shell, see below. This is definitely not a rice-mobile project that's all looks, noise and no-go. I don't have the Colt transaxle from the 4G15 or 4G93 engine, so the Talon 5-speed F5M22 transaxle is fitted.

 

If you are planning to build a hybrid like this, don't expect everything to just bolt together, as I guarantee you 100% that it won't. Many bits from various Mitsubishi models do bolt together in unexpected and useful ways, but there are always

Year and Body model selection for the basic shell.

Here in Canada, the Colt / Eagle Summit was sold most commonly in the 2-door version though there was a much less popular 4-door model, and as the 2-door and 4-door Mirage in the USA. In Japan, Australia and elsewhere this was called the Lancer Coupe. The 1993 did not have driver side airbags (also called Supplementary Restraint System, or SRS), while the 1994+ does, at least in the USA and Canada.

While both cars have the same track (1.450m), the 2-door has a shorter wheelbase, 2.440m compared to the 4-door at 2.500m. There were other differences too, summarised here.

2 door models

4 door models

Base engine + 5-speed transmission

  4G15 1469cc (SOHC 12v) + F5M21, final drive 3.752

 4G15 1469cc (SOHC 12v) + F5M21

Opt. engine + 5-speed transmission

  4G93 1834cc (SOHC 16v) + F5M22, final drive 4.021. Not very common.

 4G93 1834cc (SOHC 16v) + F5M22. Not very common.

Lancer GSR. Sold in Japan, Australia, SE Asia. Apparently not sold in North America.

4G93 DOHC 16v Turbo

4G93bt 1834cc (DOHC 16v turbo) + W5M31 variant, 3.909 rear diff (same as the Vista 4WD)

Brake Master cylinder

 13/16", or 15/16" with ABS

 15/16" with ABS

Front discs

184x13mm solid (4G15), 184x19mm ventilated (4G93 and ABS)

 184x19mm ventilated (4G15,4G93)

Front caliper piston diameter

51mm (4G15), 54mm (4G93 and ABS)

 54mm (4G93 and ABS)

Rear Drum

180mm (4G15) with 19.05mm cylinder, 203mm (4G93) with 17.46mm wheel cylinder

 203mm (4G93)

Rear Disc

200mm (ABS only)

200mm (ABS only)

Wheels and tyres

Most commonly 155/80R13 on 4.50J13, but sometimes 185/65R14 on 5.5J14 (USA models)

 usually 4.50J13, sometimes 5.0JJ13, some US models 5.5J14

So ... using parts from the donor Talon (hence using 5x4.50 pattern wheels), the brakes would be upgraded as shown

Standard 4G15 Colt

Upgraded with Talon parts

Front Disk diameter, caliper size

184x13mm solid, 51mm piston

256 or 266x24mm ventilated, 54mm piston or 275x24mm + 2x41mm piston

Master cylinder diameter

13/16"

7/8" or better 15/16" from Expo, or 1" from 3000GT

Rear Drum diameter, cylinder size

7" drum, 3/4" cylinder

266mm disk with 35mm piston.

There's several trim and equipment levels too, so if you are buying a car to start the project, then its preferable to get a model with power steering already installed. Other useful but not essential equipment items are

Note that you don't have to find a manual transmission model either, if you plan on using a 1G or 2G Talon transaxle, as you have to fit a hydraulic clutch anyway. In fact, I've noticed a number of 93/94 Colts with a failed automatic transmission, and otherwise sound and straight selling for under $500 here.


Project Engine and Transmissions Options summary

Most if not all jurisdictions allow for engine swaps of only current or newer than the body shell. Hence, if the 90-93 engines are essentially the same and comply with the same emissions regulations, you can put a 90 engine into a 93 shell with no major problems. You'd likely be refused registration if you tried to put a 84 engine in a 93. Since this project aims to build a driver's car, there's no information on any of the automatic gearboxes.

Engine Capacity

Source Vehicle

Comments

4G93 (SOHC 16v) + F5M22

1834cc

Colt / Mirage / Expo

Standard Mirage option. Only gearbox difference seems to be the speedometer gear ratio, 31/36 vs 30/36.

4G93bt (DOHC 16v) + W5M31 ?

1834cc

JDM Lancer GSR

AWD gearbox is similar to the Eclipse W5M33 but with different ratios, and uses 3.909 or 4.525 rear diff, depending on the model.

4G37 (SOHC 8V) + F5M22-1-VPKV

1775cc

92 hp

90-93 Base Eclipse

Less performance potential than the 4G93 16v. Its basically the same engine that I used in my 72 Galant. Performance parts are hard to find. Gearbox is useful however for non-turbo applications, see below on fitting big wheels.

4G63 (DOHC 16v) + KM-206

1997cc

135 hp, 125 ft-lbs

89-92 Galant, Eagle 2000 GTX, 92 Colt Turbo.

These are getting a bit old, and will have high milage, so complete rebuilds are necessary. Overall cheaper to get 93+ F5M* Talon parts.

4G63 (DOHC 16v) + F5M22-2-VPZV

1997cc

90-93 Eclipse
92-93 Hyundai Sonata

Gearbox seems to be the same as the F5M22-1-VPKV, same ratios.

4G63T (DOHC 16v turbo) + F5M33-2-SPZV, or W5M33-2-NPZV (AWD)

1997cc

190 hp, 203 ft-lbs

Eclipse Turbo

AWD gearbox is only useful if you are planning MAJOR mods to make an AWD Lancer EVO 3 lookalike.

4G64 (SOHC 16v) + F5M22-2-VPZV ?

2351cc

94+ Galant, 92-94 Expo LRV

Doesn't rev as well as the 4G63 models due to much longer stroke (100mm vs 88mm), but has plenty of torque. Its possible with some work to replace the SOHC head with the DOHC version.

4G64 (DOHC 16v) + F5M22-2-VPZV ?

2351cc

Eclipse Spyder

See above, revs well and breathes better with the DOHC, plenty of torque.

Now before you get all excited that your Colt / Mirage has the same F5M22 gearbox as the 91 Talon, be aware that while these are the same type, they are NOT the same model, are not as strong, have different mounting schemes, and have different gear ratios and primary reduction ratio, and bigger diameter axles, as follows.

Front
Wheel
Drive

F5M21-2-FSAE (4G15 Colt / Mirage)

F5M22-2-RRKE (4G93 Colt / Mirage)

F5M22-2-VPZV (4G37, 4G63 Talon, 4G64 Spyder?)

F5M31-2-???? (4G64 Expo)

F5M33-2-SPZV (4G63T Talon)

1st

3.454

3.363

3.363 1

3.166

3.090 2

2nd

1.947

1.947

1.947

1.833

1.833

3rd

1.285

1.285

1.285

1.240

1.217

4th

0.939

0.939

0.939

0.896

0.888

5th

0.777

0.777

0.756

0.731

0.741

Primary reduction

unknown, 1.0? 3

unknown, 1.0? 3

1.0963

unknown, 1.0?

1.2083

Overall 1st gear ratio

12.959

13.523

14.535

13.683

12.833

Final drive ratio

3.752.

4.021.

4.5 in the Expo with the 4G93, with ratios of the F5M21.

3.943 (in effect 4.322) 4

4.3226

 

3.437 (in effect 4.153) 4

1. Lower 1st gear and final drive due to non-turbo engine.
2. Higher 1st gear and final drive due to turbo engine.
3. This is the reduction on the intermediate output shaft inside the gearbox. Not listed in the service manuals for the Colt F5M22 and F5M33 models.
4. These higher ratios are appropriate with the 16" wheels on the Talon / Eclipse compared to the Colt / Mirage. Hence, the F5M22-1-VPKV from the base Eclipse would be a great selection (and cheaper to get I'll bet) for a modified 4G93 upgrade including 16" wheels and tyres, as the lower final drive would give better acceleration compared to the F5M22-2-RRKE.
5. The AWD transfer case is before the final drive. This means that the AWD Talon has slightly more torque going to the front wheels than the rear, split about 58/42.

6. A bit less than the Talon, but the Expo used 14" wheels with a slightly smaller rolling diameter. Hence, you could use this Expo box in a project car, and 15" wheels very effectively.

 

All Wheel Drive

W5M33-2-NPZV (4G63T Talon AWD)

W5M33 Lancer GSR AWD (4G93BT)

W5M31 Galant / Eagle 2000 GTX AWD (4G63)

1st

3.083

2.919

2.846

2nd

1.684

1.684

1.684

3rd

1.115

1.115

1.115

4th

0.833

0.833

0.833

5th

0.666

0.666

0.690

Primary reduction

1.275 3

1.680

1.680

Overall 1st gear ratio

13.941

13.208

13.598

Final drive ratio

3.866/1.090x1.275 (in effect 4.522. Rear diff is 3.545, in effect, 3.864) 5.

Used 205/55R16 tires.

2.936/1.090x1.680 (in effect 4.525 Rear diff is 4.1 ?, in effect 4.525?)

Used 185/60R14 tires.

3.100/1.090x1.690 (in effect 4.778. Rear diff is 2.846, in effect 3.102)

Used 195/60R15 tires.

 

What do these different final drive ratios mean to building a hybrid?

It's all to do with the rolling diameter of the tires fitted. If you replace the standard Colt 13" wheels with 16", 17" or even 18" units, with low profile tyres, the rolling diameter is going to increase. If you retain the standard 4.021 or worse the 3.752 final drive, the car will be sluggish in starting with the original motor, because the effective new 1st gear is now somewhere between the original 1st and 2nd. What's needed with big wheels is a higher numerically (that is, lower ratio) final drive to compensate, and to retain a similar road speed in each gear. That way, a bigger or modified engine will give a desirable performance boost. It also depends whether you want rapid acceleration or higher top speed.

Consider the road speed in 5th at 1000 rpm with various wheel, tyre and final drive combinations in the following table. Magenta is the OEM standard from the source vehicle, Green are recommended selections using affordable big wheels and brakes. Red is not an option with big brakes.

TireSize/Profile and wheel size in inches (mm)

4.021 x 0.777 x 1000rpm (4G93)

~rpm @ 100kmh

4.322 x 0.756 x 1000rpm (4G37, 4G63)

~rpm @ 100kmh

4.153 x 0.741 x 1000rpm (4G63T)

~rpm @ 100kmh

155/80R13 (330)

 34.8 kmh

2870

33.3 kmh

3000

35.3 kmh

2830

185/65R14 (356)

 35.9 kmh

2780

34.4 kmh

2900

36.5 kmh

2740

195/60R15 (381)

37.0 kmh

2700

35.5 kmh

2810

37.6 kmh

2660

205/55R16 (406)

38.1 kmh

2625

36.4 kmh

2750

38.6 kmh

2590

205/45R17 (432)

37.1 kmh

2700

35.5 kmh

2810

37.7 kmh

2650

225/45R18 (457)

39.8 kmh

2500

38.0 kmh

2630

40.4 kmh

2475

A word of caution: if you have an unmodified 4G93 (or worse a 4G15) and put on 18" wheels, your top speed will certainly go down and acceleration will be reduced, as the engine's power band is now mismatched to the gearbox. The overall first gear reduction with 18" wheels is somewhere between first and second with the orginal 13" wheels. Any added performance of the engine probably won't offset the bigger wheels much, as most modifications gain more top end power at the expense of low down torque. The usual exception is a turbo or supercharger. My plan is to use the Talon box and the 16" wheels. The Colt will be about 180-200kg lighter than the Talon, and should run really well.

Bigger Wheel Selection

While we're on the subject of bigger wheel selection, you need to know about wheel offset. This is the distance from the wheel lug mounting plane and the plane through the centre of the wheel, as shown in the adjacent diagram. The offset is a factor of the wheel-bearing design so you don't have an overhanging load on the inner or outer bearing, while leaving room for brake calipers and suspension bits. The wheel offset can be one of three types.

Zero Offset: The hub mounting surface is even with the centerline of the wheel. Mostly relevent only to trailer wheels.

Positive: The hub mounting surface is toward the front or outer side of the wheel. Positive offset wheels are always found on front wheel drive cars and newer rear drive cars, in general as shown in the diagram, left.

Negative: The hub mounting surface is toward the back or brake side of the wheels centerline, and typical of older rear wheel drive cars. "Deep dish" wheels are typically a negative offset. If the offset of the wheel is not correct for the car, the steering, handling and wheel bearing loads will be adversely affected to some degree.

The centerbore (sometimes also referred to as spigot or pilot diameter) of a wheel is the size of the machined central hole on the rear side of the wheel that centers the wheel properly on the hub of the car. This hole is machined to exactly match the hub so the wheels are precisely positioned, minimizing the chance of vibration. With a hubcentric wheel, the lug hardware will not be supporting the weight of the vehicle, all they really do is press the wheel against the hub of the car, and take the braking, acceleration and cornering loads.

All recent mid-size Mitsubishi front wheel drive cars have the same 67.1mm centerbore, but not the compact-size Colt/Mirage, which has a 56.1mm centerbore. Other makes are different: older Saabs have a 72mm centerbore, Nissan Maximas have a 66mm centerbore, Subarus have a 56mm centerbore, Chrysler Neon/Minivans have 51mm centerbore, Hondas have a 64.1mm centerbore. This means that if you find a desirable wheel (ie bigger and wider than standard) with a smaller centerbore and approximately 46mm offset, you will have to have a machine shop adjust the centerbore size. This is easily and quickly done with the right equipment.

Some wheels use high quality, forged or machined centering rings that lock into place in the back of the wheel. If you are want to use non OEM wheels, then this is acceptable alternative.

If you have non-hubcentric (that is, lug-centric) wheels, they should be torqued correctly while the vehicle is still off of the ground so they center properly, because the weight of the vehicle can push the wheel off-center slightly while you're tightening them down if left on the ground. Most 12mm lugs require the nuts to torqued to 70-80 ft.lbs.

All recent Mitsubishi front wheel drive cars have the same offset of 46mm regardless of the wheel diameter and width (Eclipse/Talon: 5.5JJ14, 6.0JJ16, 6.5JJ17, and 3000GT/Stealth: 8.0JJ16, 8.5JJ17). Other makes are different. Honda Accord / Acura are 45mm, Nissan Maxima are 40mm (?), older Saabs are 40mm. You can get away with reducing or increasing this value a bit, but there are some trade-offs that need to be considered.

And here's a point to watch when putting wheels of one model on another. I had the factory 5.5JJ14 alloys on my 89 Vista. Recently I bought a very nice Colt LRV AWD wagon, and decided to swap the alloys for the same size steel wheels. The Vista uses 185/70R14's and the LRV has 205/70R14s so I had to swap the tires too. When I tried the alloys on the front of the LRV, there's about 2mm of the caliper bracket (different to the Vista) that hits the wheel. No problem to fix, just cut the inconvenient 2mm off with an angle grinder.

Scrub Radius ... what's that?

Take a look at the diagram above. If you draw a line from the top of the strut down through the centre of the CV joint and lower ball joint, it hits the road at (usually) a different place than the center of the tire contact patch. This difference is called the steering offset or scrub radius. Most front-wheel drive vehicles have so called negative-offset (also called negative scrub-radius) steering geometry. This appears to include Mitsubishi. It makes mechanical sense to have the pivot point of the CV joint, the lower ball joint and the tire center point all in the same plane when the wheels are turned right or left.

If present, the steering offset is partly responsible for the self centering of the steering (castor angle is the other major one). For the same width wheel, if you reduce the WHEEL offset, you end up increasing the STEERING offset which increases the steering wheel feedback on bumps.

For example, if you replace your standard Colt / Mirage 5.0JJ13 wheels with 6.0JJ13 and the inner edge is in the same place, the offset of the new wheel would have to be 33mm, and the steering offset would be increased by 12.7mm. The effect would be substantially more steering feedback which many drivers find undesirable. These problems are why increasing the diameter of the wheel, widening equally in both directions to retain the requires offset, and fitting lower profile tires is so popular.

In addition, if the offset remains the same, and the rolling diameter increases, this means that the scrub radius will become more negative. Hence, you can get away with reducing the wheel offset from the standard 46mm. For example, if you replace the 155/80R13 tires with 195/60R15s, the rolling diameter will increase about 1.8cm. You could fit a 5.5J15-E40 wheel and still get about the same scrub radius.

Changing wheel offset also changes the loads on your wheel bearings, so if the bearings are old, within a few thousand km or less you will often be replacing them. Hence, it's not a good idea to fit wheels with offsets more than 5-6mm less than what is standard for your car unless you are prepared to change bearing regularly. Note that because the strut is angled inwards, as the wheel diameter increases, the wheel can be widened both inwards and outwards the same amount. This is very desirable, as it allows the standard offset to be maintained, and is why (given the 5 stud hub conversion, below) 6JJ16 Talon or 6.5JJ17 Eclipse wheels and standard size tires can be fitted to a Colt / Mirage.

Fitting bigger wheels on the Colt that orginally used 13" wheels will also increase the ground clearance. For example, the original tires have a rolling diameter of 57.8cm while 205/55R16 tires have a rolling diameter of 63.2cm. Put another way, the bigger wheels increase the ride height by about 2.5cm (slightly less that one inch). Increased ride height means a higher center of gravity, hence slightly more body roll on corners. The suspension geometry remains the same.

When I was building rally cars, an extra inch of ground clearance was desirable, as was increased suspension travel. For a road going sedan however, it is probably not, so the suspension is going to have to lowered to compensate for the bigger wheels. Lowering has several effects:

Pro:

Con:

One final point: when you fit bigger wheels and esspecially bigger brakes, make sure that you first fit new brake pads, as this pushes the sliding caliper outwards. Its pretty annoying to get your nice wheels to fit when the pads are thin, only to find later that you can't fit new pads without the wheel hitting the outer edge of the caliper.

In addition, bigger wheels, tires and brakes will certainly increase the unsprung weight, so spring and shock upgrades will be necessary.


Project Plans ...

Big Brakes and 5-stud wheel Conversion

As with all inexpensive vehicles like the Colt / Mirage / Lancer, the braking system is designed to a price and performance, with the base model front disks being 184x13mm, and the rear drums 180mm. Even the 184x19mm ventilated disks and drums fitted to the 4G93 engined 2 door and all 4 door versions are only slightly better.

This system is barely adequate for the performance of a 4G63 or 4G64, and would be completely inadequate and frankly dangerous with a 4G63T engine. In fact, a standard brake system is designed to support an emergency stop from highway speed, once or twice, before the system heats up too far for reliable operation. What is of course needed is bigger brakes that can dissipate the heat more quickly.

There are effective big brake front rotor kits from Brembo, PowerSlot and AEM, but these are moderately to very expensive depending on the kit chosen. For example, the low end models provide larger slotted rotors with aluminium mounting hats (reduces unsprung weight a bit) and use the existing calipers. Hence, these disks can only be slightly thicker than 19mm or they won't fit between the pads and the caliper. If you have a 4G15 model, you would need the calipers from the ventilated disk vehicles. While the bigger rotor will have a higher heat capacity and increase the braking torque (the leverage effect of the disc pad's distance from the axle center), the brake pads are still the same standard size, so these need to be higher temperature materials. Brembo 4-pot caliper and big disk kits are listed on the Web at around us$2400 / C$3800.00.

Based my my rally experience, the less expensive (around C$1000, with new rotors, recon calipers, perhaps wheel bearings) and still very workable solution for the Colt / Mirage front brakes is to

  1. increase the diameter of the rotor to 250mm (Talon / Eclipse), 266mm (Vista 4WD) or 275mm (93+ Talon) from 184mm. This provides around 50% greater swept brake area. The 266mm disks and calipers will fit inside 14" wheels if required, while the 275mm disks and calipers require at least 15" wheels.

  2. increase the thickness of the rotor to 24mm ventilated style, up from standard 13mm solid (4G15) or 19mm ventilated (4G93).
  3. increase the surface area of the pads by 20-40%. Since the plan is to use bigger wheels, you have more space to play with.
  4. replace the original iron calipers with alloy units, though still single or dual piston floating units. Perhaps not as sexy as coloured Brembo units, but far less expensive, and for most road performance and occasional track applications, perfectly adequate.
  5. fit larger diameter (14", 15" or 16") alloy wheels to further reduce unsprung weight.

These five together allow intermediate grade heat capacity pads, while still dramatically improving the braking ability of the vehicle. The downside is that bigger brakes will in general increase the unsprung weight of the suspension a bit, but this can be offset by the lighter alloy calipers. In my experience, the difference is marginal, and since there are usually spring and shock upgrades done as well, the slight extra weight is of little importance. Besides, I've always thought that little brakes behind 17" or 18" wheels looks rather ridiculous, aside from suggesting that the car is either stock or the owner can't afford decent brakes.

For the rear brakes, it's a little more complicated. Colts without ABS have drums, while ABS models came with rear disks, but you still have to deal with the stud pattern issue.

 
If you want to have 5x4.50 stud wheels, then adapting the Talon rear hubs and disks is the simplest option. Alternatively, you could adapt the Talon hub only, with the Galant backing plates, and get 5-stud 9" drums from the base model 95+ Talon.

The other alternative is to use 4x4.50 hubs. This would allow the Galant / 2000 GTX front and rear parts to be used. The downside is that aftermarket 15"or 16" wheels would have to be purchased, though there are some factory wheel options that work or require some minor machining to work.

Given the age of these wheels (around 10 years), their condition must be checked carefully, specifically

Older wheels can be cleaned, bead blasted and repainted with two part epoxy paint. Here in Ottawa a company does the whole job for about C$60 each, and the results are excellent and long lasting.

 

 

Left is another editted picture (originally found on the net) showing what big wheels, big brakes and 17" 5 stud wheels looks like.

 

 

 

 

So how is this to be achieved?

The major issues are how to mount the bigger rotors and fit the different calipers. This almost ALWAYS requires some fiddling, fabrication or machining.

Now, it often happens that the next model up in a manufacturer's range has bits that fit your base model. For example, the Expo minivan and Galant / 2000 GTX uses 4-stud x 114.3mm (4.50") wheel mounts and the Talon / Eclipse uses 5-stud x 114.3mm (4.50") wheel mounts. All have 250x24mm ventilated disks. Galants have 9" rear drums, while the Talon has 260mm rear disks. Not only that, the Expo, Galant and Talon knuckles are very nearly identical dimensionally as the standard Colt / Mirage knuckles. The Coincidently, my 89 Vista 4WD has very similar knuckles too, but with 266x24mm disks ... bigger than the 91 Eclipse. In 93, the Eclipse was upgraded with 275mm disks.

A relatively simple brake upgrade for a Mirage with an improved performance engine such as a modified 4G93 1.8L would be to fit the Expo (rather than Talon or Galant) knuckles and brakes (see details and gotchas below). The master cylinder needs to be replaced with a bigger bore unit (Talon 7/8" or Expo 15/16", up from the Colt 13/16"), because the Expo caliper pistons and rear wheel cylinders are bigger. Otherwise, the brakes will still work but the pedal will sink very low to the floor. The brakes may work, but they would FEEL like they might not. The Colt rear handbrake cable MIGHT fit the Galant drum system with no modification. You would need 14" wheels and 65 or 70 profile tires to keep your speedometer accurate.

Given all the necessary new and reconditioned used bits, this could be done in a weekend, and would not break the bank.

 

 

Using Talon Knuckles Gotcha #1: While they fit on the ball joint and into the standard strut, the steering arm is positioned about 25mm lower than the Colt unit. The tie-rod ends will fit, but the tie rod angle from the rack will result in noticable toe in effects on suspension bump.

Solution to Gotcha #1: fit the tie-rods on to the top of the steering arm, rather than the bottom. This entails reeming the taper (~ 9.5 degrees) on to the other side of the steering arm, drilling the underside about 4mm with a 12.7mm drill, then fitting a small collar washer to ensure the tie-rod aligns in the hole. This puts the tierod end at very nearly the original position.

Better solution to Gotcha #1: Instead of Talon or Galant knuckles, find a set of 93-96 Expo / Summit Wagon knuckles. These have the same lower placed steering arm, but the tierods attatch to the top of the arm instead of underneath, and the tierod ends are very nearly in the same place as the original Colt units. The Expo has 4x4.50" studs, but all you have to do is fit the 5 stud hubs from the Talon when you put in new wheel bearings (you ARE using new bearings, right?).

Using Talon Knuckles Gotcha #2: The angle of the Talon strut bolt arm is slightly greater than the Colt, resulting in noticable (and undesirable) positive camber on the wheels.

Solutions to Gotcha #2: Drill out the LOWER mounting bolt holes in the strut (NOT the knuckle) to 14mm from 12mm. Fit thick washers on both sides, and when the wheel alignment is done, weld the washers in place on the strut. Another way is to adjust the two bolts that attatch the top of the strut to the car. i.e. move the struts inwards 3-5mm, to set the camber correct again. See the diagram to the right.

  1. Drill out half the taper with a 16.0 mm bit.

  2. Press fit a section of steel rod with a 12.7mm hole, then reem the new 17:1 taper.
  3.  Grind the outer surface of the insert where the rod end nut now fits.

The strut mounting points on the Colt are identical to the Galant / Talon / Eclipse. Likewise, the axles are also the same 25 spline.

89-92 Talon and Galant have the same 250x24mm disks. The 88-91 Eagle Vista 4WD (not the 2WD) also has a compatible knuckle, and takes a 266x24mm disk, and 14" wheels. 93+ Talons have 275mm disks (and of course 16" wheels).

Galant / Talon / Vista have the same 67.1mm diameter wheel aligning center collar.
Wheel and tire options are
5.5J14 + 185/70R14 (eg 88-89 Colt Turbo factory)
6.0J15 + 195/60R15 (eg 89-92 2000 GTX, Hyundai Sonata )
6.0J16 + 205/50R16 (Talon / Eclipse)
for the same rolling diameter (61.4cm)

Front Wheel Bearings: While the Colt and Galant / Talon / Expo / Vista knuckles have the same style of dual row angular contact ball bearings, the Colt has smaller 74x40mm bearings, while the Galant / Talon / Vista / Expo are 80x40mm. You can also just fit the Galant / Talon / Vista 4.50" hubs into the existing bearings, but this is only for the front wheels. Conversely, you could fit the Expo knuckles with the big bearings, and use the Colt hubs. But see notes, left...

For a performance car, esspecially when bigger wheels and tyres are fitted, the bigger bearings are a worthwhile upgrade for a small increase in unsprung weight.

Axles Splines: Just to confuse things, the axle outer end seem to come in 25 spline only, while the inner end comes in 22 or 23 spline. Check carefully before you buy your bits.

Choice of knuckles: The only real EXTERNAL difference I can see is that the steering arm is 10mm longer on the Talon, and set about 25mm lower. Fitting this to the Colt will have the following effects:

  • slightly reduced turning circle, offset by

  • slightly reduced turning effort on the steering wheel, and
  • change in the steering alignment of the wheels on high lock, and bump steer problems.

The bump steer occurs because the tie-rod (blue) above causes some toe-in before it starts to compensate for the strut compression with toe-out. The Expo tie-rod (orange) will probably produce more toe-out than standard (black), but this should also be compensated by the 10mm longer steering arm. Note that redrilling the Talon arm will position the tie-rod end about the same position as the Expo.

Note the different strut angle of the Talon compared to the Colt. This is what causes the positive camber that has to be corrected.

 

Please note that the Talon lower control arm cannot be fitted to the Colt / Mirage.

 
Still to do: Selecting the right alloy calipers to replace the iron ones, and what effect the change in piston diameter will have on the brake pedal feel. A bigger master cylinder (currently 13/16" bore) is certainly necessary e.g. Talon 7/8 "or Expo 15/16".

 

 

So the choice is yours: 4-stud x 114.3mm or 5-stud x 114.3mm. The bigger mounting plane (up from 100mm diameter), and esspecially the 5-stud option allows a greater selection of wheels (including steel wheels for winter). I'll be using the 5-stud and plan on using the standard Talon 16JJ6 alloy wheels (chemical cleaned, bead blasted and repainted with 2 part epoxy).

Another issue is that Registration authorities generally specify that wheel sizes can one inch wider and two inches larger diameter than the largest wheel fitted by the manufacturer. If a vehicle inspector wanted to be picky, on the Canadian Colt this would mean 6.0JJ15. Mostly this is because the wheel bearings have load limits. With the Talon parts, you could argue that 8JJ18 was an option, though this would be stretching things at inspection time. In any case, for road use, a six inch rim on a light car like the Colt is perfectly adequate. In general, with the 5-stud wheels, big brakes and standard 6.0JJ16 wheels, most inspectors would not query it. Save your 18" wheels (and your money) for after the car is registered.

 

Talon Hub adapter bushes, in #303 stainless steel. These are available for us$220 per set. Email me if you want a set made up: it takes about a week depending on the load at the machine shop.

Gotcha#1: The Talon hub (and axle) sticks out about 10mm further than the Colt hub because of the oil seal, which means that a standard 6JJ16 with a 205/55 tire comes VERY close to the outer body wheel arch fold under (the outer and inner guard).

Solution#1: Roll the outer guard fold . You just need 4-5 mm clearance.

Solution#2: Replace the 205/55R16 tires with 195/50R16 e.g. Dunlop SP2 or similar.

 

Gotcha#2: The 2-door Colt did not come with disk brakes, and the 4-door Colt has a slightly longer wheel base, so the brake cables are about 50mm longer. This might not seem much, but it means that the cable has to be rerouted to compensate, and a couple of mounting brackets repositioned.

Gotcha#3: the Talon caliper is very close to the trailing arm, and the bracket through which the handbrake cable passes has to be remanufactured to fit.

 

Standard (and rather rusty at present) rear suspension showing the 4x100mm wheel hub and tiny 7" drums that go with the 4G15 engine. The main rear lateral link (shown in cyan) is the one that takes the major compression load on corners, hence its the biggest. The upper lateral link shown in yellow (tension loads) mostly just keeps the trailing arm in the right place. The control link shown in green is used to adjust the rear toe-in.The brake drum is removable from the hub.

Unfortunately, the 4x4.50" rear hubs and 230mm / 9" drums from the Galant and 5x4.50" Talon disk hubs will not bolt straight on because the axle stubs are bigger and longer, as shown in the diagram left.

There are two possible options here.

  1. Locate some rear hubs, calipers and caliper brackets from a 88-92 Colt GT. These have in effect the same length axle stub as the 93 Colt, but use an oil seal collar, have the 4x4.50" stud pattern, and will bolt on directly if a small collar is fitted to handle the oil seal at the base of the axle. The disk brake hubs from the 89-92 Eagle 2000 GTX have integral hubs with the 4x4.50" pattern, but uses the same axle stub as the Talon. The caliper bracket bolts on to the axle stub using the existing 4 bolts that previously secured the drum back plate.

  2. Both the Colt and Talon have stub axle machinings that are welded to the Colt trailing arm and Talon solid rear axle assembly, respectively. It would be a relatively simple process with an angle grinder to cut the axle stub machinings from the Talon (with its integrated caliper bracket) and the Colt, and weld the Talon part onto the Colt trailing arm. THIS SORT OF WELDING MUST BE DONE BY AN CERTIFIED EXPERT or you risk the weld breaking and loosing a wheel. With this option, you get the 5 stud wheels and the brackets to mount the calipers. The important issue is aligning the new stubs correctly: you will need to make a left and right sided jig that the axle stub fits into, and the trailing arm bolts to solidly. If you get the alignment wrong, you will have handling and tire wear problems.

Here's the Talon hub and disk installed, also showing another view of the 2 1/8" exhaust system with modified Talon rear muffer.


Solution #3: Use Expo hub, converted to 5 stud.

It turns out that the rear hub from the FWD Expo is the same height as the Colt hub, has the desired 4x4.50" pattern, and accepts the Galant rear disk. The only difference is the the Expo axle is 30mm, while the Colt is 28mm. A simple sleeve adapts the Expo hub to the Colt. The caliper adapter bracket from the 92 Colt needs to have the axle hole enlarged about 2.5mm so the hub fits. The hub can also be redrilled to 5x4.50".

The Expo hub is the best solution, as the Talon hubs with adapter sleeves place the wheels 5.5mm further out, with bodywork contact using 205/55R16 tires.

 

By way of comparison, the Lancer EVO 6 shows suspension geometry similar to the Colt / Mirage, though the trailing arms, main rear lateral link and upper wishbone are forged aluminium alloy (shown in white). The upper arm also includes the EVO Active Control components which appears to be a sort of rear steering and camber control system. Of course the EVO also has to support a drive axle shaft. Note that the standard caliper is a Brembo alloy double opposed piston type, rather than the more common single piston sliding caliper used on most production cars.

The EVO has a complete removable rear cross-member that holds the suspension and the rear differential.

Note also the 5-stud hubs, on Mitsubishi standard 4.50" (114.3mm) diameter centers.

I'm toying with adapting Eclipse AWD transmission parts ... though this is a MAJOR undertaking, and would not be registerable without an engineer's certificate, plus x-rays of the suspension mods. Not a job for the faint of heart, inexperienced or technically challenged. Not to mention the costs involved. See here for another page that discusses the AWD conversion concept.

 

Issues with brake caliper and master cylinder selection.

As mentioned earlier, the standard Galant and Talon front calipers are made of cast iron, and should ideally be replaced with lighter alloy units. What you have to realize here is that all you really need is a single (or dual) piston alloy caliper and mounting bracket that can accept a 24mm disk, and has the right thread for the brake hose. It does not have to be off a Mitsubishi vehicle, as the caliper slide mounting adapter brackets will have to be fabricated as needed.

So what's better? Single or dual or quad (4-pot) piston, floating or fixed calipers? If you are planning on racing or other competition where severe and prolonged braking is required, spend the big money and get a Brembo 4-pot fixed caliper kit. If however you are on a limited budget (and who isn't?) and you want effective high performance brakes for road use, use available mass-produced parts.

Most if not all affordable mass production vehicles with 14 inch or less diameter wheels use single piston floating calipers, mainly because of space limitations, and secondly for manufacturing cost reduction. A few with 15 inch or bigger wheels use dual piston floating calipers e.g. the 99+ Subaru Forester, Imprezza and Outback. Only when you get into the limited production performance cars will you find dual and quad piston fixed calipers.

What's the difference? Its all related to force per unit area ... i.e. basic physics. In the diagram, the right hand side shows a single piston on its brake pad. Piston area is typically about 50% of the

 

 

pad area, and the pad is relatively small, such as in a vehicle with 13" or 14" wheels. The larger the piston area compared to the pad area, the lower the force per unit area has to be exerted by the piston. Using two smaller pistons means that a larger area pad (around 20% larger) can be used (see the diagram), which means that the heat capacity per unit area of the pad can be lower. Translated, this means that if the smaller pad needs to be a high performance type, the larger pad can often be an intermediate performance type for the same braking effect. Many larger vehicles, eg GM products, have big single piston calipers and big pads, while the performance versions of the same model have dual piston calipers on the same size brake pad. Production vehicle dual piston calipers usually have the same sized pistons, while high performance or racing dual (or even triple) piston units often have pistons of different size. These provide a progressive braking effort because the force exerted on the pad is directly proportional to the piston diameter.

Let's say that a single 54mm piston is used. If a dual piston floating caliper is desired, the equivalent dual piston size is 38mm, and no change to the master cylinder is required.

The standard 2-door 4G15 engined Colt / Mirage single piston floating caliper pistons are 51mm with a 13/16" bore master cylinder. The 4 door Mirage models have 54mm pistons with a 15/16" bore master cylinder. 90 Talon front caliper pistons are 54mm, with a 7/8" master, while Galants have 57mm pistons with smaller rear drum cylinders.

From 93 on, the AWD Eclipse uses 275mm front disks with dual 41mm piston calipers. These will bolt on with no other modifications.

To use the Talon brakes, at the very least, you'll need to replace the master cylinder with at least a 7/8" (Talon) and possibly a 15/16" (Expo) or even 1" or 1 1/6" (91-95 Dodge Stealth / 3000GT, bigger with ABS) master cylinder to give acceptable feel the brake pedal. If you don't, the pedal will sink low to the floor because it has to push a larger volume of brake fluid to the calipers. In addition, the registration authorities would likely not accept a brake system with a mushy pedal.

The front caliper piston size and rear caliper/wheel cylinder size are what mostly defines the brake balance for the vehicle. While its true that the most braking effort is done by the front wheels, its the rear brakes that provide the stability. Note that I'm leaving out any discussion of ABS systems, as all (!) these do is to maximise the braking effort at each wheel for the current road conditions.

How do brakes work, exactly? When you push the pedal, fluid is displaced in the master cylinder, and the caliper pistons or wheel cylinders are displaced. Hence the force on the brake pedal is applied to the pads/linings. Note too that all modern cars have tandem master cylinders with separate hydraulic circuits for front and rear brakes. This means that for a given pedal pressure on the front wheels, you can adjust the rear braking effort and balance by changing the size of the wheel cylinder / caliper piston.

Let's suppose that you tend to get rear wheel lockup under moderate to heavy braking. What happens if the rear wheel cylinder (or caliper piston) size is reduced? Let's take this to an extreme! If the cylinder was 1/4", to get the same braking effect as the standard cylinder, you would have to press much SOFTER because the piston requires less fluid to move the same distance. That is, reducing the cylinder size actually INCREASES the braking effect. Conversely, increasing the cylinder size DECREASES the braking effect because for the same pedal travel, the wheel piston is displaced less, meaning less pressure on the linings and hence less braking effort. But increasing the size means that more brake fluid has to be pumped from the master cylinder, which means that the pedal will have to travel further. This is why you have to increase the diameter of the master cylinder to retain the desired pedal travel.

What happens if the front caliper piston size is increased? As above, less brake effort on the front disks for a given brake pedal pressure. Does this mean that smaller or larger is better? Neither! The piston size is dictated by the size of the disk and brake pad to be used, hence the bigger the caliper piston, the harder you have to press the pedal. This is why cars usually have power assisted systems to compensate. So we are back to a balancing act: keep the caliper piston and master cylinder diameters such that the amount of power assistance required is minimised.

Then there's the question of what pads to use. Organic and semi-metalic pads are popular and cheap, but have limited heat capacity and take some time to cure in use. This translates to barely adequate braking for normal driving. They'll slow the car from 100kmh to 70kmh but then the braking efficiency reduces dramatically.


Notes on the engine swap.

The standard 4G15 and 4G93 are quite compact: the 4G63 DOHC has signifcantly more plumbing to be fitted into the engine bay. The good news is that it does all fit.

Here's a nice snap I found on the net, showing a very clean LH drive 95 Mirage with the 4G93, plus aftermarket headers and a strut tower brace. Note the amount of space between the headers and the much larger 4G93 radiator. If your Colt/Mirage was built with the 4G15 engine and small radiator, you will have to replace it with one that is compatible with the bigger engine. Note the larger radiator that comes with the automatic gearbox and all 4G93 engines. The battery is still in the standard position on the vehicle RHS of the engine bay. Air conditioning is fitted (the aluminium tube along the top of the firewall).

The battery will generally have to be moved elsewhere when the new engine is installed: most often its moved to the trunk. Moving the battery is not essential, as I've seen pictures on the net with the battery in place. The main point of moving the battery is to make space available in the engine compartment. The new location in the trunk requires the following:

Compare the above 4G93 SOHC image with a 95 Lancer GSR image (also found on the net, note it is a RHD car) with a 4G93bt Turbo 1.8L engine. Visually this is quite similar to the 4G63 DOHC . The DOHC head takes more space, and the the exhaust manifold has the heat shield fitted. Air conditioning is not fitted, so there's no fan adjacent to the exhaust manifold. The standard radiator fan is fitted. On the RHS of the engine bay, an aftermarket air filter and other unidentified pieces have been installed, displacing the battery, assumed to have been moved to the trunk. Unseen below the air filter and the bottle of green liquid (radiator overflow) is the intercooler. According to articles in the FAQ on www.dsm.org, the standard side mounted intercooler is not very effective under sustained hard use and will quickly heat saturate.

 

Hence, wherever the intercooler is installed, there needs to be adequate airflow to it, and just as importantly, away from it and out of the engine bay. Lancer EVOs to have outlets on the hood In addition, there needs to be adequate cold air flow to the air filter. Again, EVOs have aircraft style venturi intakes on the hood.

This is expected to entail mods to the front bumper area and to the hood.

Here's the car as purchased in April 2002, basically straight but very dirty. The 4G15 had run a big end bearing.

September 2002: The engine bay has been cleaned up, and most of the various surface rusty brackets have been cleaned and painted. The clutch master cylinder and hydraulic line (in blue), big radiator and air conditioning pipes, hoses and accessories have been fitted.

Here's a close up of the modified Talon air cleaner, which has two top and one bottom mount. The restrictive original plastic intake tube has been removed, and the top splash cover / mounting bracket fabricated. This bracket provides the necessary support for the top rear mounting point, just visible. The fuse box has to be lifted about 5mm at the rear end to allow the rear filter mount to fit underneath it on to a small custom bracket. The filter front mount attatches via a 10mm spacer into a convenient M8 bolt hole in the chassis rail. Before installation I had the slightly rusty and knocked about air filter can bead blasted and repainted inside and out with two part epoxy paint. The intake tube is made up of the end of the Talon part (shown here) and the original 4G15 part, with an internal metal sleeve. There's another picture further down this page that shows the complete assembly.

 

Early September 2002: The 4G63 is fitted for the first time below. What would seem to be a simple process took me eight hours at a friend's garage, with a hoist and an engine crane.

What takes the time is

  1. making two lifting eyes (not shown above) to bolt on to the head just behind the cam angle sensor and on to the two bracket bolts above the power steering pump i.e. the points circled in yellow. This is where you have to attatch the lifting crane. Some engines have lifting point brackets attatched. The alternative is making a U-frame that fits under the block, so that a floor jack can be used without damaging the sump.

  2. getting the position of the engine and transmission in exactly the right place. This is nowhere as easy as it looks, even with the right lifting equipment.

  3. lining up the top engine bracket and the bush that mounts to the body.

  4. tack welding the bracket and bush together.

  5. taking the assembly out again, which means supporting the engine again.

  6. fully welding the bracket and bush, and

  7. putting it all back in again.

At this point, the engine/transmission is hanging more or less normally positioned on the two main mounts. Here's a side view showing how the 4G63 is leaning forwards. Its actually leaning about 10 degrees further towards the front as the roll stoppers have not been fabricated. The best way to tell if it's hanging right is when the transmission bracket sides are parallel to the mounting block on the car sub-frame (I guess another picture would help here).

 

And its all got come out again once the roll stoppers are done so I can clean and paint the various brackets and other engine components. Of course, now that the parts all fit, it will be much quicker to reinstall.

Some of the small gotchas ... with solutions!

The Talon fuel line from the fuel filter replaces the Colt unit which is now the wrong shape.

The power steering fluid supply hose fits, but the output pipe / hose to the rack is (of course) not quite long enough. Get the equivalent hose from the Talon. Note that the hose from the DOHC Eagle 2000 / Galant 4G63 does not fit either.

You have to install the engine (from the bottom, with the gearbox attatched) with the A/C compressor removed, or it hits the suspension K-frame. It's not possible to install the engine from the top with the transmission (and esspecially the axles) in place: the 4G63 is quite a bit longer than the 4G15.

Fitting the Talon Transmission and dealing with the Roll Stopper issue.

The 1G Talon F5M22 is not the same model as the F5M22 fitted to the Colt. You could as an option use the F5M31 from an Expo (4G64 engine) as this has the mounting brackets on the bell housing. To summarise

 

It's not feasible to move the center member left by one bolt hole, and make a new mounting holes, as the rear mounts then get in the way of the exhaust pipe. What's needed is

The Talon bracket is used, with a 16mm hole rebored about 26mm higher. The original 12mm hole is indicated by the yellow arrow. A 54mm strip of 25x6mm is welded into the bracket to prevent squashing. You could use a section of 16mm/5/8" ID tube as well.

The preferred support bush is from a Colt with an automatic transmission, as it is wider and more dense than the manual transmission part. The original F5M21 bush can be used instead if desired, using the same method. The bush needs to be moved backwards about 10mm, so the front mounting hole is cut out (indicated with the red arrow), the rear hole is enlongated, and the 25x6mm strip shown slides under the bush (inside the support channel, not under it), and clamps the whole channel length.

Below is the new front roll stopper installed, showing how the M16-120 bolt transfers the roll loads to the center member.

 

Outlined in yellow is a 6mm plate to help equalize the loads on to the stopper block. While it takes a large load to bend an M16 bolt, this plate makes a better engineering solution.

Note that just simple link between the transmission bolt and the M16 can potentially move slightly, so another M10 bolt in a tube connects to the roll stopper bracket on the block, forming a rigid triangulated structure.

 

The rear roll stopper takes a bit more ingenuity. The problem is how to pass the rotational loads from the engine-transmission on to a suitable part of the car, without compromising the axles or structure. I considered a bracket on to the steering rack bolts, but the rack brackets these attach to look too puny to absorb the potential loads. Hence the solution in the image at left. The Talon 4G63 rear roll arm is retained, but a new hole is drilled for the vertical tube that passes the roll loads down to the center member that was designed for it. The upper bush comes from the Talon rear lateral link, and is very solid. The tube is made of 5mm wall square tube. The 4G63 roll arm is secured with two M12 bolts on to the block, and while there is now a torsional load as well as the normal tension load, I expect that there will not be any problems.

 


Steering Issues:

If you want more direct steering for the Colt/Mirage sedan, then the options are either placing a smaller diameter steering wheel (difficult to impossible these days with airbags) or installing a rack with a faster ratio ie less turns lock to lock.

My 93 Colt LRV-AWD wagon and the 93-95 Colt / Mirage with power steering for example have 3.25 turns lock to lock (and what appears to be the same rack), and are noticably less direct than the 2.75 turns of my 89 Vista and the Talon/ Eclipse. The non-assisted Colt steering rack has 4.25 turns lock to lock, and even with the standard 13 inch tires properly inflated, the steering is very indirect and gets quite heavy on large turn angles. This means that if your Colt has non-assisted steering, you will really have to fit a power rack once bigger tires and the heavier engine are installed or put up with the non-sporty indirect and heavy steering.

All the Mitsubishi steering racks are quite similar, and it's possible to adapt a faster Talon / Vista 4WD power rack to the Colt sedan, requiring some small changes to one of the rack mounting points only. Alternatively, you can use the 2.75 turn power rack from the 89-92 Colt 200 series, which is ALMOST a direct replacement, the only major difference being that the pinion shaft is about 22mm shorter, so the steering column won't fit. Solutions are lengthening the short shaft (it's a tight slide fit that's supposed to collapse in a collision) that fits onto the pinion, or fabricating a pinion extender from other bits. The water seal parts around the pinion housing will have to be extended. The hydraulic connections are inverted a well.

For example, the Vista/Talon rack has a larger diameter tube at one end (this is part of the power assist system), and is essentially the same length as the Colt unit. The tie rods will have to be replaced with Talon units to compensate for the 5cm wider track of the Colt. Hence, the issues to consider when adapting a rack from another model are

One further point on power rack options to consider: the Colt (3.25 turns) has a 14.5" diameter steering wheel than the Talon (2.75 turns) 15.0" wheel, so for the driver the steering effort may well be about the same. Similarly, with the slightly longer Talon / Vista steering arms on the knuckles, the wheels will turn slightly smaller angles (the difference in left to right wheel i.e. they are not parallel) than would occur with the original arms. Since the aim is to create a sporty car, then fitting the 2.75 turn rack (with the standard Colt steering wheel) would seem to be a necessary and desirable upgrade. You can also fit a 1G Talon steering wheel if desired: its a direct swap.

The standard rack mounting uses two rubber bushes to dampen vibration, each covered by a clamp with two 10mm bolts. One trick that was often used in rally cars was to replace the rack mounting bushes with tougher synthetic materials that reduce the rack squirm that contributes to imprecise steering. The downside is that more road vibration is transmitted through to the steering wheel to the driver.

Compare the standard rack, below, with the faster rack, right. Aside from the pinion height, it's a direct swap.

 Here's photos of the non-power assisted Colt rack, the assisted Colt version and the power rack from a Vista 4WD (which is the same as the Talon in specification).

The angle of the pinion to the rack is about the same.

Either the Vista or a Talon power rack is to be fitted to take advantage of the fast 2.75 turns lock-to-lock.

Note the LHS (as shown here) mounting bracket is only a rubber bush round the rack tube, while the rack is located by the RHS bush and bracket adjacent to the pinion.

The Vista and Talon racks are the same, though the Vista rack clamps are as shown and bolt on to the top of the crossmember, while the Talon bolts onto the bottom.

On all models the clamp point on the alloy pinion casting is assymetric so that the rack can't rotate. If the Talon/Vista rack is to be fitted to the Colt, there are two options:

  1. cut off the inconvenient assymetric portion (see the diagram left) and TIG (aluminium) weld an new aluminium piece in the right place and grind to suit, or

  2. disassemble both racks and see if the Vista/Talon rack and pinion parts will fit inside the Colt unit. Personally I'd go with option #1 as it appears to be much less work.

  3. The hydraulic connections (circled in red) are different, and will require some adjustment of the fittings and hoses.

  4. Here's the conversion for the faster rack from the 92 Colt GT, showing the necessary pinion extender.


Suspension Issues

The standard Colt suspension is actually quite reasonable with a well-damped ride. Some models (often the 4-speed automatics) had a front anti-roll bar. This can be fitted to any car, either by replacing the lower control arms with the rollbar compatible versions, or fabricating and welding on the necessary mounts. The K-frame mounts points are already present, and all you need are the rubber bushes and bush clamps.

HOWEVER ... once the 16" wheels and 205/50R16 tires are fitted, the front shocks esspecially become inadequate to control the increased unsprung weight of the new wheels and tires, and on many bumps will bounce off the road surface.

What's needed is both a stronger spring (ie a higher spring rate) and shocks with a higher damping rate.

So let's first have a discussion on spring rates and shock damping rates.

Colt / Mirage coupe

 FWD Talon / Eclipse

AWD Talon / Eclipse

AWD Expo

Front Spring rate

123 lbs/in

134 lbs/in

146 lbs/in

137 lbs/in

Rear Spring Rate

90 lbs/in

112 lbs/in (1.8L)
128 lbs/in (2.0L)

140 lbs/in

375 lbs/in (yes, that's right, for load carrying)

Lowered springs

 ~160 lbs/in Front

~140 lbs/in Rear

The spring rate is expressed in force per unit length (here, lbs/in), and is a function of the spring wire diameter, the number of active coils, and the diameter of the coil, and the free length of the spring. Hence, for a given wire and coil diameter, and a given free length, the spring rate can be increased by any combination of

Initially I installed the direct replacement KYB GR2's with the standard springs. Because I use the Talon knuckles (for the 5 stud wheels and bigger wheel bearings), the insulator bearing holes in the strut tower were slotted inwards 10mm, and the knuckle-to-strut upper bolt replaced by a camber adjuster bolt, to get the correct camber. With the extra weight of the 4G63 and F5M22 (about 180 lbs all up), the front of the car was around 20mm lower than the rear. When driving the car, the front tended to float and dive somewhat on larger bumps: clearly stronger springs are required.

Mitsubishi builds front springs in three outside diameters: 145mm, 160mm and 172mm. In Canada / USA, the standard Colt / Summit front springs are 145mm outside diameter (OD) with 47mm strut tubes, but in Australia, 160mm or 172mm OD springs and 51mm strut tubes are fitted. I found this out when I obtained a set of standard ride height 30% uprated Lancer GSR springs from Australia. My KYB GR2 struts accept the 145mm springs only. So what to do?

Since the Talon has 172mm OD springs, the Talon struts (51mm tubes) have to be used. The 172mm OD uprated springs and Colt / Ralliart insulators are used, unless you want to slot the strut tower fore-aft mounting point holes about 5mm closer together, drill a third mounting point hole and use the Talon insulators.

It is possible to use Expo or Talon springs, as these are desirably stiffer, but the main problem is that the Expo and Talon are about 180kg heavier than the Colt, and standard springs (and hence struts) leaves the lighter Colt sitting 25-30mm too high. In addition, the spring cup on the Expo and Talon struts are about 25mm higher than on the Colt.

Consequently if you want to use the Expo or Talon front springs, the spring cup on the strut tube has to be lowered. Since welding the cup back on to a strut tube will likely damage the strut, it would be better to either

 

The camber adjustment corrections used with the standard parts are still required with the Talon struts, and may not be required if the standard Colt knuckles are used. The car now sits level (after about 20km of driving) and should settle about another 10mm within a few hundred km. The main benefits of using Talon struts are that

a) there's more options for performance parts available. e.g. updated springs for the Colt are hard to find.

b) the strut tube diameter is larger which means that the damping effect will be better; and

c) the larger diameter springs provide smoother suspension control over bumps.

 

The rear springs are a major part of the handling problem, as they are really too soft. Replacing them with 30% uprated units and KYB GR2's transformed the handling of my car. Low speed bumps are handled about the same, but the bigger bumps no longer cause the rear to squat and wobble.

Its also possible to use the 1.8L Talon springs

To summarize, the cheapest most effective suspension upgrade is KYB GR2's all round, new front strut insulators, and uprated rear springs.

There's also the issue of the suspension bushes themselves. The Colt was designed as a smooth riding shopping cart, not a sports sedan, so the suspension bushes are quite soft and flexible. This flexibility results in car that wiggles around and is imprecise in handling. In addition, OEM rubber bushes last about three years, steadily becoming softer and more pliable, and controlling the suspension less precisely.

The main culprits are

a) the front strut insulator bearings. These allow up to 20mm of uncontrolled up-down movement, and when old, permanently stretch under the load, reducing bump energy absorbtion and increasing road noise transmission. New insulator bearings will raise the car about 10mm. Ralliart (the Mitsubishi rally car and competition parts division) have replacement strut insulators for the EVO3 that are significantly less flexible.

b) the front lower control arm rear bushes (the big square ones). These absorb the bump and braking loads, as the arm pivots rearwards on the front bush. Front bushes are unavailable as an OEM spare (buy the complete arm is the offered solution, yeah right!), but the rear bushes are available for about C$40 each. If you have a front wheel that seems to flap on bumps, or when you brake you get bump steer or (16") tires rubbing on the inner guard, then the rear bushes need to be replaced.

There are standard parts, Ralliart parts, and also polyurethane replacements available. I sourced mine from Australia.

c) the rear trailing arm front pivot bush. This bush is so flexible, the rear wheels can bounce foreward up to an inch. The first cure is to fill the gaps in the bush with a synthetic rubber sealant or pourable urethane. This will help a bit. If its not enough, then the Ralliart parts should be used.

If the above does not reduce the suspension wiggle, then the next stage is to replace in order the

  1. rear lower control arm inner bush

  2. the rear upper control arm bushes

  3. the rear camber control arm bushes

Urethane bushes are quite effective, but they have a down side, and that is that they transmit road noise and vibrations, which can be quite annoying.

 


Clutch Issues

There are three sizes of clutch fitted to recent Misubishi engines, as follows

Engine

Release Method

Clutch Size (outer, inner diameter, friction area)

4G15 SOHC 12v

cable

200x130mm, 181 cm 2

4G93 SOHC 16v

hydraulic, release cylinder 13/16", master cylinder 5/8"

215x140mm, 209 cm 2

4G63 SOHC 8v

hydraulic, release cylinder 3/4", master cylinder 5/8"

215x140mm, 209 cm 2

4G63 DOHC 16v

hydraulic, release cylinder 13/16", master cylinder 5/8"

215x140mm, 209 cm 2

4G63T DOHC 16v

hydraulic, release cylinder 3/4", master cylinder 5/8"

215x140mm, 209 cm 2 or 225x150mm, 221 cm 2

4G64 SOHC 16v

hydraulic, release cylinder 13/16", master cylinder 5/8"

225x150mm, 221 cm 2

The 4G63 DOHC engine should have at least a 215mm clutch, and if necessary the flywheel can be machined to accept the 225mm clutch from the Turbo model. Note that 1G and 2G engines have a different number of flywheel bolts (6 and 7 respectively), so make sure that any replacement flywheels are the right type for the new engine.

Note also that the FWD transmission flywheels are slightly bigger than the AWD transmission flywheels, and you have to use the matching starter plate.

If your Colt does not have the hydraulic clutch pedal arrangement, you will need to locate a 4G93 model (look for a 4-door) with the F5M22 transmission at a wrecker for the parts. Note that the 4G93 engine model with manual transmission is quite rare, and seemingly unobtainable here in Canada. Fortunately the Talon pedal assembly is quite similar, can be easily adapted, and are very common at wreckers.

The adaption process requires

  1. cutting a piece off the bottom of the mounting plate, and a second piece of the top mount region. This second piece is adjusted in shape and welded back onto the top of the mounting plate, so it has the same shape as the original assembly and bolts into the same places i.e. the firewall and the frame under the windshield.

  2. the clutch master assembly also needs to be repositioned. backwards about 16mm to the brake master and clutch master mounts will fit the firewall shape. Some cutting and welding of the assembly was required.

The pivot point for the Talon pedals is in approximately the same position relative to the booster mounting points, as the original Colt assembly, but the pedal arms are about 1cm longer. The pedal pads themselves are the same size but spaced a bit closer, and will be slightly lower than the original Colt parts. I expected to have to change the pad position, but once the pedals were fitted, the position was satisfactory.

Minor gotcha With the Talon 5/8" master and 13/16" slave, PLUS the Talon pedals, you will need to extend the master cylinder shaft about 10mm so the clutch releases properly.

Its all rather tedious to do (and you need double jointed wrists to install it all), but once done, you won't need to take the pedals out again.

The mounting bolt pattern for the brake booster is the same, though the booster tank itself is slightly smaller in the Colt.

Three holes (two M8 bolts and the master cylinder) have to be cut into the firewall, in the flat area that is reserved for this for the 4G93 engine models. Here's what it looks like when done. The Talon 5/8" master cylinder is used. All models seem to use the same diameter master, and vary the slave diameter.

 

Engine Control Unit (ECU) installation issues.

When I did the engine swap in my 89 Vista, I replaced the 1997cc 4G63 SOHC-8v with the 2351cc 4G64 SOHC-8v from the '91 Hyundai Sonata. These engines are essentially the same aside from the capacity, so the engine bay wiring did not have to be changed, and the ECU was the same type, just a different model, and plugged in directly. Easy!

Swapping the Colt's 4G15 for the 4G63 from the Talon is nowhere near as simple. Not only are the ECU's different types, the ECU connectors are physically different (more pins, though the number of used connections is about the same), and some of the engine bay connections are different too.

There's two ways to do this, both of which will take a significant amount of time. You ABSOLUTELY have to have the wiring schematics for both cars available. I'll be posting the connector change details here for completeness.

  1. Cut the ECU wiring harness out of the Talon and fit it into the Colt. This is quite messy, and then leaves the old Colt harness in place. This can be very confusing, requires dash panel removal and would be a nightmare to maintain.

  2. Make use of the existing wiring harness (after all it's already there), change the relevent connectors in the engine bay to suit the 4G63, and change the ECU connectors to suit the Talon ECU, using parts cut out of the Talon. This is in my view the preferred solution, and results in a clean and maintainable vehicle.

To do this right the first time, you must do a significant amount of planning.

  1. disconnect and LABEL the various engine bay sensors and injector connections in the Colt and the if possible the donor Talon. If you don't have the donor car, identify the sensors on the engine.

  2. Expose the Colt ECU from behind the RHS trim panel just under the dash.

  3. Examine the Colt and Talon ECU's: you'll see that the three connectors have different numbers of pins.

You have to swap the ECU boards in the cases, as the Talon case won't fit in the space for the Colt unit.

Here's where you need the schematics! The "why" should be obvious from the next image...

In general, both 4G15 and 4G63 ECUs have the same set of connections like power, ground, various sensor inputs and injector control outputs, but the pin connections and connectors are not the same (see the picture above), and the Colt and Talon don't have the exact same set of sensors. For example, the 94 Colt 4G15 and 4G93 engines have two oxygen sensors, while the 92 Talon 4G63 has one. The Talon ECU requires an extra three wires (eight if you have the Turbo) that have to be routed into the cabin. There's an addition two wires that go to the instrument cluster.

Some Notes on using a 4G63T

The Turbo ECU has the same connections as the standard model, plus an additional five connections for

The radiator and A/C condensor have to be moved forward, or else the A/C fan and perhaps the radiator fan repositioned in front, because the exhaust manifold, turbo and intake pipes takes more room. Even with the radiator in the standard position, there's only about 10mm clearance to the turbo cover plate.

It may be necessary to fit a grill in the hood center, above the turbo, to allow heat to escape, as seen on EVO4's.

An intercooler has to fitted (and protected from stones) and the intake piping installed. It is necessary to move the battery, either by swapping position with the air cleaner can, or perhaps easier and giving more space in the engine bay, to the trunk.

The exhaust system has to be updated as necessary. The AWD turbo front pipe has to be used, and likley adapted a bit after the flex joint to suit the centre tunnel.

Above is a 91 Talon engine bay. Note how the battery is adjacent to the suspension tower, and the air cleaner can sits on top of the intercooler. The intercooler output pipe emerges behind the can, and curves back to the throttle body.

In the Summit, the battery can be moved adjacent to the strut tower, but this will displace the windscreen washer fluid reservoir. The air filter can probably stay in about the same place. A new windscreen washer fluid reservoir has to be fabricated and fitted near the original battery position or adjacent to the firewall.

It is possible to fit the Turbo engine, as shown in this RH drive car (see the brake master reservoir position). The standard radiator fan is still in place, and an intercooler is fitted (though not visible, just the hoses) in front of the radiator.

Installing the intercooler.

Fitted in the Talon in the front right corner, under the aircleaner, with the air entering from the bumper scoop, and exitting into the wheel well. The same approach could be done in the Summit. Front mounting a different intercooler is expensive and requires a modified turbo output pipe, and other plumbing to get it to work.

 

 

Fuel System Issues

The electric fuel pump is in the gas tank, and is regulated to 335 kPa by the regulator on the injector fuel rail (photo required). The Colt and Talon 4G63 pumps appear to be the same, but the 4G63T is different (higher litres/hour capacity), and has a different pressure setting on the fuel rail regulator.

Now that the car is running, its clear that for the 4G63 at least, the standard Colt pump is perfectly adequate. There is a minor difference in the MPI relay circuit, and I get a persistant error code 43, Fuel Pump, that causes the Check Engine Light to be on. I still have not resolved this issue.

Exhaust Issues

The original Colt exhaust is designed for the 1.5L 4G15, and is too restrictive to be used with the 2.0L 4G63. The 1.8L 4G93 exhaust is essentially the same as the 1.5L. The Talon 4G63 has a 2 1/8" system, compared to the 1 1/2" of the original.

Issues to consider are

The 92 Talon exhaust can be modified to fit the Colt, as follows. The curved pipe on the rear muffer has to be cut off and a 2" flange welded in place. Keep the piece you cut off as bits of it get reused. I purchased the flanges from the local muffer shop for C$11 each.

Next, you have to fit the Talon muffer so the rest of the pipes can be make to line up later. There's two convenient M10 bolt holes in the rear channel that can be used to attatch the Talon rear mount, see below. These bolt holes are used if a rear sway bar is fitted. I have not seen a Canadian model with a rear sway bar.

You will probably need to clear the threads with a tap. Don't forget to use some anti-seize compound when you bolt the bracket to the frame.

 

The Talon rear mount requires a piece of 1/4" plate welded to the subframe, once the rear muffer hanger has been cut off. Here's what it looks like when done, and before painting (you ARE going to paint the bare metal, right?). The M6 bolt was used to align the plate prior to welding. The Talon double hanger is attatched with M8 bolts into threaded holes in the plate. The outer bolt has a captive nut welded to the back of the plate as well.

The Talon middle pipe from the Catalytic converter to the rear muffer has to be rotated 180 degrees to fit around the Colt gas tank. You need to

a) cut a 1.5" piece out of the pipe so it aligns with the center tunnel and so that the in-line resonator (if fitted) clears the fuel tank. The original two hanger brackets are cut off the original pipe, and welded on to the new system.

b) cut the pipe just after the resonator, and take the last 3" of the pipe, with the 3 bolt flange, and adjust the length to fit as shown in the picture below.

c) Either use three sections of the curved pipe to make the connecting section shown below (took me three hours to get it right) or have a local shop make it for you, once the car is mobile.

Once done, it should look something like this.

Radiator Issues (this is almost a no-brainer)

4G15 engined Colts without air conditioning have a narrow radiator, with two mounting pins on the base. Automatic, airconditioned and all 4G93 models have the wide radiator, with the LHS mounting point moved further to the left. In addition, the 4G93 radiator seems to be slightly thicker than the 4G15 model. If your Colt originally had the narrow radiator, you will have to either move the mounting point or fabricate an additional one and bolt or weld it in place.

Note that a radiator from a Galant / Eagle 2000 GTS cannot be used, though it fits in the space, as the top tank is too high and prevents the hood from closing. You could use a Talon radiator, as this is not as high, and the filler cap is on the engine. You will have to sort out the upper mounting brackets. The Talon air conditioning fan is too deep to fit, and hits the exhaust manifold. Hence, if you want to fit air conditioning, then you have to have the Colt unit, or perhaps the Expo minivan unit which looks about the same.

In summary, the 4G93 radiator is the best solution, as it fits all the brackets, and has a larger heat transfer area than the Talon part. It proves to be perfectly adequate for the 4G63 and for the 4G63T as well. All you need to do is have two radiator caps: just don't touch the one on the 4G63, or else change the thermostat housing (which has the radiator cap) to the part from the Eagle 2000 GTX 4G63, which does not have the radiator cap.

The standard Talon lower radiator hose fits with about 1cm cut off the lower end.

The upper hose can be made from a section of the Talon upper hose, or find something that fits at your local parts shop.

Interior Issues

The Colt interior is, well, spartan, and only 4G93 based cars had the instrument cluster with a tachometer. It turns out that while the Talon dash complete is too difficult to adapt, the Talon gauges (Tach, Fuel, Temp, Oil and Speedo) from the instrument cluster (but not the cluster itself) will in fact fit in the space for the existing cluster. There are substantial if tedious issues to be resolved e.g. moving the speedometer cable inserter assembly and adapting the connectors and wiring circuits.

Advantages: unique dash for the project car. The gauges match the engine sensors, and the speedo will be accurate with the 16" Talon wheels. It turns out that the standard Colt speedo is also accurate with the Talon transmission and 16" wheels.

The Talon steering wheel is a direct replacement for the standard Colt part. Note that it's about 5mm larger in diameter than the original wheel. If your car has the tilt steering wheel option, you may find that you need to tilt the wheel up.

 
The Colt seats are not much to write home about either. My plan is to adapt the Talon seats by fabricating the necessary seat frame adapters. This also involves ensuring the seat belt connections are done correctly.

Air Conditioning Issues.

Very few 93 Summits have an A/C system on a 4G15 engine. These were R12 based, and I've only ever seen one in three years. Don't bother with this unit. Look instead for a 94-96 ES Automatic at your wrecker, as many of these came with R134A based A/C. Installing the fan relay assemby, dash A/C switch, evaporator, condensor and pipes is simple enough: just bolt them in where they came of the donor car. The donor car system should be complete and still retain partial pressure. Make sure there's no obvious damage or corrosion. If the system has been open to air and road dirt for an indeterminate period, find another car as donor, because the parts are now just scrap aluminium. Water, dirt and A/C components don't mix.

You can check the compressor clutch by applying +12v directly to the clutch wire, and see if the clutch grabs the pulley. Rotating the pulley should result in a quiet sucking and popping sound from the Supply and Disharge ports on the compressor. Get the existing drier cannister too. While this has zero used value, its necessary to be able to seal up the system when you reinstall it. You have to replace it later.

The basic wiring is already there, and all you do is add the extra stuff. Fitting a compressor is a bit more involved. You can't easily use the big Talon Denso compressor, even though 90-93 R12 units can be retrofitted. The problem is getting adapter hoses made up, because the pipe ends are different sizes. I solved the problem as follows

When you are ready, replace the drier canister (near the LHS strut tower) with the new one, then take the car to the a/c shop, as getting it to work now requires the services of a profesional. The system has to be evacuated to ensure it has no leaks and to remove any residual moisture from the system, essential as moisture and R134A PAG oils react very badly and can cause component failure. The refrigerant is added. The complete service should cost around $200.

 

Trim Issues.

The Colt / Summit came with a variety of trim and equipment levels. While its possible to add the various bits, some are harder than others to retrofit.

 
Power mirrors
 require some additional wiring under the dash. When power mirrors are atandard, the car was built with the extra wires and a few relays in the loom. Adding mirrors requires these extra circuits to retrofitted.

 
Power door locks
Seem to have come only in the 4 door models.

Power windows
Seem to have come only in some 4 door models. Includes a modifed inner door panel with window control switches and of course no window winder handles.

Tilt Steering
Usually came with the power mirrors and automatic transmission. I've retrofitted my car with the tilt column, but only because my knees are a bit close to the Talon steering wheel. The tilt column allows the wheel to lift about 15mm higher than the non-tilt column.

 

Identifying the engine (optional)

The Colt usually had no external indication of the engine size, but if you want a low key solution, there's a C$25 raised lettering sticker from the side skirt of the 95 Talon ES that's quite suitable. This says simply "16V DOHC" and comes in black, electric blue or chrome. I chose the black to go with the black cherry paint.

Other options I considered were the GTX and 2000 badges from the Eagle 2000 GTX. Perhaps this conversion could be called the Summit GTX.

Installing air horns (optional).

The original horn on my car was not functional, and even when it does work, it makes a rather timid beep. Bosch air horns are a superb solution for those drivers who don't seem to know there's other traffic around them (here in Ottawa that seems to be in epidemic proportions...). The process requires that you ...

  1. take out the RHS headlight and remove the old horn.

  2. move the existing horn wires (two) back out to near the main junction box. These are used to drive the compressor relay supplied with the Bosch horns. Note that the horn circuit switches GROUND, not +12v.
  3. adapt the old horn bracket to the Bosch compressor.
  4. Run one 16G wire from the compressor -ive terminal to the bracket. Run another 16G wire back out to the junction box area. Install the compressor where the old horn used to be, and run the air hose into the engine bay. Replace the headlight assembly.
  5. Mount the two horns on a piece of 2.5mm plate, which (in my case) then mounts on to the front of the air cleaner cannister with two of the M4 bolts that secure the air flow sensor, plus one additional M4, as shown left.



email me if you have comments or technical questions on these pages.