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Mitsubishi FTO













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Mitsubishi FTO
Year: 1994-1997 `````````````````````````````````` Type: Coupe
Country: Japan ``````````````````````````````````` Host: GT1 & GT2
Price: $8,379 ('94 GR)
Length: 170" // Width: 70.6" // Height: 51.1"
Wheelbase: 98.4"
Overhang: 5' 11"
Track:
Ground Clearance: 5.9"
Tires:
F. Suspension: MacPherson Strut / Coil / ARB
R. Suspension: Multilink / ARB
Weight: 2,535 lbs.
Brakes: Vented Discs-ABS [F] Solid Discs [R]
Engine: 2.0 liter DOHC V6
Aspiration: Normal
Valves per Cylinder: 4
Bore x Stroke: 3.09"x2.72"
Compression Ratio:
Redline: 7,500 // Deadline: 8,000
Tested HP: 167@7,000 rpm
" Torque: 137@4,000
Layout: Front Engine / Front Drive
Transmission: 5-Speed Manual
Lbs. per HP: 15.2
HP / Liter: 83.58
0-60 mph: 8.0 seconds
0-100 mph: 21.4
¼ Mile: 16.331 @ 88 mph
1KM: 29.535 @ 115
Track Test: 1:52.883
Top Speed: 153.89 @ 7,300 rpm
EXTERIOR
I tried to love the Mitsubishi FTO from the first game, but couldn't get into it much. In the 2nd game, I tried again, and this time I love it, but don't get to drive it much since there's so many other cars that overshadow it. So, excuse me if this review is a bit lacking.
The FTO is one of the best cars a beginner can pilot, period. The GR in particular starts one off with a nice low price-and though the power is a bit wimpy, the handling is so good, it makes the FTO extremely easy to drive whether one is using analog controls or the D-pad. We don't have FTOs in America, it seems the closest thing to it is the Eclipse. The FTO looks cooler. Even without a racing body, it's got that 'street rod' feel to it; I especially like the oval-shaped front grille.
Apparently, it began production way back in 1971 as the “Mitsubishi Galant FTO”, but the car we're familiar with in the game didn't arrive till 1994. It was built en massé till mid-2000, when for some reason it was dropped from Mitsubishi's line-up. Maybe they should have tried exporting some of them here to the US.
Besides its good looks, the car is well-balanced. There is more overhang towards the front, increasing traction even under power, and the rear has just enough weight to keep the car planted firmly, but not too much to cause excessive oversteer. The FTO is also a middle-weight, and those who have just bought one will not need to get it lightened immediately. All around, it's a great car for beginners and experts alike, and its sporty appearance will guarantee that it won't get passed by too often. I just don't get a chance to get in one as much as I'd like, other cars tend to lure me in.
ENGINE / DRIVETRAIN
The main thing about this V6 is that its got a short stroke (2.72"), and this means that revs (and not torque) are gonna be your ally during racing. Sure enough, the tachometer is dialed with a 7,500 rpm redline, which gives us plenty of room for power in the higher ranges...it doesn't matter if you're using an automatic or a standard gearbox.
Acceleration is lacking, but can be easily upgraded after you win a few races. A novice player can theoretically: get an FTO GR, buy sports aspiration, win Tahiti's Sunday Cup race, buy spec 1 engine tuning, win at High-Speed Ring (or go back to the tropical vibes at Tahiti), buy better drivetrain parts (lighter flywheel, heavier clutch...maybe), win at Red Rocks...buy better tires, etc.
Those who want more initial pep can get a '94 FTO GPX, which comes standard with a 192 horsepower engine. Either of these cars can be entered in any of the horsepower-limited events, except the Kei-car races...although this is assuming that the GPX hasn't had permenent engine upgrades (engine balancing & port/polish) applied. The GPX is more expensive, I don't think it can be bought for less than $10,000, but I know it's priced in the $13,000 range. Engine upgrades for the GR or GPX can be bought, though there is little difference between the '94 and '97 GRs once all power-ups have been applied (252 hp vs. 253). The '97 GPX actually winds up with less power than the '94 car, oddly (322 vs. 328), and since the weight of any GT2 FTO winds up being the same, there is really not as much of an advantage to the '97 car. Not sure about any of the GT1 Mitsubishis, though. I only raced one FTO from GT1, and that was months ago.
As can be expected, the gearbox is great like a bowl of Frosted Flakes® or a cherry pop-tart, so are the brakes. You may want to get a close-ratio unit for small tracks, though sometimes it'll be sufficient for the bigger ones, too. The brakes won't need to be tampered with immediately.
CHASSIS / HANDLING
DNP: Damn Near Perfect. Some FWD vehicles are burdened with relentless understeer, others have so much body sway that the front-drive advantage can get lost if the underparts aren't upgraded. Not so with an FTO. Going back to the novice driver theme...it is noteworthy to note that this sexy looking coupe also handles well, and Mr. or Mrs. Beginner may find that the FTO will be fine with its stock tires and suspension. Throttle-induced understeer can be expected here and there, but oversteer? The FTO can't even compute what oversteer means. It's not even a word this car can comprehend! ¶
Again and again, you can expect the FTO to pull through in corners, unless you're racing against other vehicles with insane amounts of power and good cornering, as well. Generally, this car will do extremely well in any of the FF series races, not to mention the Gran Turismo Nationals and many of the special races. I've even heard war stories from internet folks who have entered FTOs in races where it is out-classed and underpowered, and the FTO will still persevere. There are many combinations of tires you can experiment with if you want a high-powered FTO to drift more; but generally, it's in its prime when driven for grip...out cornering, out braking, and out performing the AI, not to mention your buddy who thinks a higher-horsepower Camaro is gonna easily blow your rice car away! Let the game begin.
PROS
1. Handles well. Lack of understeer with almost no oversteer come standard.
2. The FTO GR is PERFECT for beginners, and is priced to start the game as well.
3. Tires, suspension, weight reductions, brakes can all be upgraded, but there's no hurry unless you're trying to enter this car in the GT 300 or the Euro-Pacific regionals or something like that.
4. Gotta love the pingy engine noise! It only gets better with upgrades, too.
5. Gearbox is balanced for speed and acceleration.
6. High-rev tachometer comes standard.
7. FTOs just look cool.
CONS
1. Acceleration is okay, nothing stellar. The GPX is better, though...much more race-ready.
2. Engine upgrades only improve the GR's power by @ 97 hp. The '94 GPX can accept up to 328 hp, which isn't bad once we consider the low power-to weight ratio one can acheive.
3. Low torque in any car (GR or GPX).
 
 
 

Published: July 31, 2004
 

 
















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