James’s CN9A Build… Introduction

More new content coming your way guys! Over the last couple of weeks I’ve been putting in great effort to bring some new builds to the site. Today we look at James’s Lancer Evolution IV. I’m not sure exactly at what point things made a drastic change, however for quite some time now the Evolution platform has taken over across our little island. It ranges from Evo IIIs all the way to Xs, if anyone is mildly interested in a well rounded vehicle the go to option is usually an Evolution especially when performance is considered. This makes a vast majority of them rather common place, leaving only a select few to stick out. Which brings us to the reason James’s Evo is of a different nature and to understand why you would first need to take in the back story to this build. This is one of passion and an unwillingness to give up on a goal he set throughout the ups and downs.

James always heard of the performance capabilities where the Evolution platform stood. However it just so happened by luck he ended up doing a favor for a close friend which involved driving their car. And just like that it was all over for James and there was no turning back. The acceleration, the cornering speed, the handling, the braking, the comfort, it was culmination of things that all rushed at James suddenly. At the time James owned a EP91 Glanza V which was dear to him as he built it from nothing. With as many upcoming plans James had in the works for the Glanza, none would be able to deliver an experience as the Evo did. James knew after that drive he had to part ways with his beloved Glanza. It was too much to ignore and aside from the performance they’re packed with, then came the absolute stunning appearance.

With little effort James was able to get his hands on what was a great base to build on, a relatively stock Evolution IV specimen. This would follow similarly to the Glanza and doubled as his daily driver along with being a part time drag car solely for when B.A.D.D events are held. Initially everything appeared in good working order and it wasn’t until a little while in when James started to noticed an issue. Being surrounded by owners of a similar platform, the issue would be dealt with rather quickly. Although it wouldn’t end there, the following issues took James for quite a ride and for each issue he solved another one would show up. Being resilient James pushed forward with his plans to build a completely different motor which would place him in the top tier Evo dominated class at B.A.D.D. As time passed and with things well underway James found himself in a tough situation and opted to sell the parts which he accumulated for the build and also put the car up for sale.

Fast forward a couple of months and being in a better position, James was once again on the hunt to quench his desire for performance and was looking to dive back into the car scene. Still with Evo dreams in his sights he made a call and as luck would have it, he was able to regain control of his old car in an attempt to finish what he started. This time around James’s focus would be in a completely different direction as it relates to the type of build. This was very important to him as the car wouldn’t have to undertake the task as a dedicated daily driver anymore. Having spent a lot of time around the drag racing scene since his initial plans, James thought it would be better shift his main focus away from predominantly drag racing and look into building a well rounded car. This way he’ll be able to enjoy more of the driving experience which initially got him hooked while taking part in more events within the motorsport calendar. The plan moving forward is to hit the circuit for some track day action with a goal in mind to chase down the AWD street class title. In addition to this, James would ensure the car has enough grunt to be competitive within the mid 7 sec bracket in the 1/8 mile. All the while still maintaining a full street car registration being able to drive to and from the track and or attend any car meets.

We’ll be going back and taking a look at when James first purchased the car, go through a few of the teething issues along with some of the  mods he was able to execute before parting ways. Also moving forward with being reunited and having a new direction for the build and close off with a quick run down on the current setup.





Some beauties taken when James first got possession of the car…


A shot after a clean up and the car had been registered…


A look at the Evo IV interior which came standard with Recaro seats colour matched with the rest of the interior…


When James purchased the car it came with a trio of Prosport premium EVO series gauges in the form of wideband, oil pressure and boost…


Another great thing that was included was the D2 Racing coilovers the car came with…


In comes the bad, the car started to develop a knocking shortly after in James’s possession. After further investigation the guys noticed the motor was rebuilt with the wrong rod bearings. Being heavily into the 4G63 scene they went to work and quickly had James up and running. Or so they thought, James would be plagued with several electrical issues. Eventually they guys got the car to a point where it was capable of driving and James could begin to enjoy his prized possession…



In possession of his new wheels James made some appearances, and as previously mentioned Barbados has no shortage of Evolutions…



A few more shots taken in the parking lot at work…


Being in possession of the car for a little while James decided it was time to make a few changes. As he required some fabrication work to be done, James enlisted the services of ReWeld


First on the list was to tackle the intercooler piping which was in dire need of upgrading. After taking the required measurements Reudon was able to knock out the piping and BOV flange…


A quick before and after comparison showing just how much of a necessity this was…


A look at the final portion of the puzzled, the hot side piping after it was installed…


He got rid of the factory turbo setup and went for a Evo 7 turbo mated to a ETS stock frame turbo manifold with a MA Performance O2 housing and to close it out, a 40mm Turbosmart wastegate…


James opted to have this setup with a slight variation to the norm and had ReWeld fabricate the dump tube to exit through the hood…




A few shots of the fabrication process on the stainless wastegate screamer pipe…


A look at the setup with the hood closed…


Needless to say James was extremely pleased with the setup as raw flames were now exiting through the hood…



This fun would be short lived, throughout this time James was still having an issue with the car pulling timing at the top of the RPM range. The guys added some fuel to see if this issue would be rectified but to no avail it was unsuccessful. A few weeks later James stopped to launch the car and upon take off was greeting with a loud explosion closely followed by a plethora of smoke…


Upon inspection James had put two holes in the block front and rear of number one cylinder. Through this massive setback James found inspiration to dive even deeper into the build. After putting in the necessary research James set up to build a 4G64 bottom end along with a full overhaul of the 4G63 head inclusive of valvetrain and camshafts. This setup would put James exactly where he would aspire to be; at the top battling it out with some of the fastest Evos on the island. As James was in the midst of accumulating the parts required he was met with some shipping challenges which pushed things to a halt. Throughout this back and forth combined with the current state of the economy James opted to sell the parts which he received so far and sell the car separately…



After a short hiatus James made and effort to return to the car scene and was fortune enough to retain possession of his Evo IV. A few shots taken of the car upon arrival back into James’s possession…


With a renewed focus James would be ready to dive in to make his goal come to light…


When James negotiated to purchase the car from the owner at the time, a motor package was included unlike the state in which he sold it, the setup is as follows…

Forged 2.3 bottom end with Manley H beam connecting rods

4G64 crank

Evo IX Beehive valve springs

GSC R2 camshafts

Stock Evo VII manifold and turbo


This setup was more than enough of a start for James to build from and would head him in the direction towards his goals…


That’s it for a first look at James’s CN9A build, I hope you guys enjoyed it and stay tuned for more to come.

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