As said in the previous article about this brand WRC, Mitsubishi withdrew from the WRC in 2002 and spent 2003 building a new car. Mitsubishi Lancer WRC (2004-2005)
And they came back with a really impressive piece. 6,000 new parts, improvements on aerodynamics in the Lola wind tunnel, innovative and new solutions in many technical units. From the factory Peugeot team taken G.Panizzi behind the wheel of one car and the trio – G.Galli, D.Sola, and K.Sohlberg behind another. Mitsubishi said miracles are not expected and the goal for 2004 is to perfect the car. Miraculously, the Lancer only technically failed, so the Japanese reduced the 2004 season program and focused on the 2005 car production. And there was something to improve, as the new car constantly suffered from technical and electronic failures. The best achievements – 3 sixth places in Monte Carlo, Catalonia, and Sardinia.
In 2005, H. Rovanpera sat in an even more updated car (engine computer, turbo, suspension, and aerodynamics), and G. Panizzi and G. Galli shared the second copy. All of this has paid off compared to last year. Podium in Monte Carlo and Australian rallies and not the last place in the constructors’ cup. Despite improved results, Mitsubishi finally withdrew from the World Rally Championship in late 2005. The cars and their maintenance went to Ralliart UK, which rented and serviced the cars during the 2006 and 2007 seasons. G.Galli, D.Carlsson, J.Valimaki, J.Hanninen, T.Gardemeister, X.Pons, and U.Aava performed at various events of the WRC with the Mitsubishi Lancer WRC. The privateers also managed to do something with a car – D.Carlsson finished third in the Swedish rally in 2006, and at the same time it was the last podium of Mitsubishi in the World Rally Championship. T.Gardemeister succeeded in collecting points quite successfully in 2007. And that was all. After 2007, the cars finally fell to the European National Championships.
The new generation Mitsubishi Lancer WRC was produced in the same number as the old one – 17 units. 6 units suffered major accidents and were no longer in use. 5 Lancer’s crashed in Europe and one in distant Canada. Of the remaining 12, again, only two specimens have been seen in the stages recently. The car, owned by Britain Tristan Bailey, drove in the Niederostereich Rally in Austria last year, and Belgian Chris Van Woensel managed to take Rally van Haspengouw in Belgium this year. It is this Lancer WRC, with chassis number # 8, that has the most mileage of any 04-05 specification car. Since 2004, the car has started in 77 rallies and has only had a holiday for three years. G.Panizzi, G.Galli, U.Aava fought with it at the World Rally Championship. Later, for many years, Latvians I.Vasaraudzis, R.Kisiels, and Slovak J.Melicharek shared a car. The car then spent four years in Holland with Bob de Jong, who handed over the Lancer to the Belgian Chris Van Woensel, with whom he still drives. In addition to the already mentioned Latvia, Slovakia, Belgium, and the Netherlands, Lancer WRC 04-05 were active participants in Great Britain, the Czech Republic, and Hungary. If the #8 numbered Lancer has lived and continues to live a long life, the # 10 car drove only once – in the 2004 WRC German Rally, G. Panizzi crashed car into the tree on the first stage of the second day of the rally. You can find the video below.
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