Good Evening!…

…and hello.

Very glad to be here, on Tuesday I completed a 19-hour round trip to bring back a car I’ve wanted for 20 years.

Its obviously a Mitsubishi GTO Twin Turbo. Opposite my first office was a bright red GTO that sat outside my window every day, I always liked it. I’ve always wanted a tuned Japanese car and when a bit of money came my way, I plumped for the GTO.

This one is black, has a bodykit, dump valve, turbo timer, aftermarket coilovers and wheels. I’ve hardly touched it yet but am pretty pleased.

This is the list the guy selling it posted, the head unit is a Sony for starters, the turbo timer is there, the wheel is OK, nothing special, it gets in the way of the indicator lights, the rims are cool, the suspension is too low, but here it is:

  • Powerflow system
  • Blitz dumpvalve
  • HKS turbo timer
  • Drilled and grooved discs back and front
  • Momo steering wheel
  • Rota GTR 18" rims
  • Brand new BC coilovers/camber adjustable
  • Brand new BCT tyres
  • JVC headunit
  • K&N induction kit

I joined a few days back when I made the deal with the guy, my cheque’s in the post, REAL photos will be coming in the next few days, but I am chilling with a beer and just thought I’d say hello and post initial thoughts after 3 days’ driving and copious note-making….

I bought the car for £2,450 although you can call it £2,800 with travel and petrol to get it home.

Initial thoughts, whines and wonders:

I love low-to-the-ground sports cars. I’ve got a little Lotus Elan and work on Lotuses including parts design, for the main part. I’ve never owned a grand tourer. The guy who owned this before me put aftermarket dump valve, coilovers, and a powerflow system, whatever that is, together with some other irrelevant bits, onto the car.

I feel it drives too hard, there is a noticeable double-bump from the shocks after even the slightest road impact. Either its got to be an out-and-out burner, or its a grand tourer - I think he tried to get the best of both worlds and failed - he hasn’t achieved anywhere close to maximum engine performance yet its set up to be driven hard. I am undecided whether I try to settle the handling down to a more comfortable ride, or try to turn it into a beast.

Its fast - but its not nippy. The weight implies that. The back wheels are toed in but I won’t comment further on the handling for now, I’ve taken it around literally 4 or 5 real corners.

It has a front-wheel judder from 60-70mph, intermittently. I suspect it only occurs when you return from one lock, and a balljoint is wavering, or it just needs alignment or wheel balancing.

I bought it in Ireland, took it back on the ferry to Bonny Scotland, and immediately had 2 inescapable speedbumps - it ground out nastily on both. The third had a side path which the boat police kindly let me go round. About 10 miles later, the brake pedal was dropping to the floor and had to be pumped to generate any real stopping power. So I was convinced I’d ground out a brake line…

When I opened the reservoir 20 miles later, the fluid was to the brim. No obvious leaks underneath, although an obvious dent to the exhaust at the lowest point underneath - I think its been lowered too far. These can’t have been the first speed bumps its seen in 22 years…

Perhaps it was overfull or some air was trapped - when I got back on the road the brakes worked fine for another 150 miles - not the reassuring heavy sponge and steady travel one might expect from an Audi, more of a free pedal feel for the first 20-30%, then a bit of bite with a hard edge - but OK for now. I put it straight on ramps when I got home and no fluid is leaking… I’ll be looking seriously into this.

The gauges all sat quite happily in the middle register even in heavy queues.

The turbos (or one at least) engage at the slightest movement, and when you release them without care, there is noticeable kickback - attune to this and the engine runs virtually silently when the turbos are idling. There is definitely an exhaust rubber gone, you hear it every time you let the vehicle’s weight take after any acceleration - and also some squeaks/rattles from the passenger door and cargo deck - both tiny jobs.

There’s also some clunking when engaging gears, very minor but I think a transmission fluid change is on the cards for starters.

So here’s my big tasks list.

a) rear aerofoil doesn’t function. I had no expectations that it would. Its cool, but a bit of a fiddly gimmick IMHO. I do want to fix it though! Although I wasn’t diligent, from memory, if you exceed 50, or if you press it to off (hard latch) and then back to auto (which is latch and release, so I am not sure the switch is good), the AERO light illuminates. I have no idea if the front aero works, or if it even has one, or how to test. I’ve ordered the rear service kit and will follow the instructions on the site to refurb the front, then see where I am.

b) ECS button doesn’t function, unless I misinterpret its use. No lights light, no change in feel when you press it.

c) I don’t think the air conditioning works. It provides pleasantly cool air (today was a very hot day) but there is no genuine chill, and no noticeable difference (or beep) pressing the AIRCON or ECON buttons. The display does not illuminate.

d) cruise control button sags to the right, illuminates green A-SC light (don’t quote me on that) and then doesn’t actually work

e) drivers’ side wing mirror just clicks when you activate auto-retract. It will push closed and open (and you have to force it to the new position before it will allow you to push them back the other way) so I suspect a broken or worn cog/rack inside.

f) there is some kind of small dial fitted to the RHS of the steering column shroud. No idea what it does.

g) I will need to seriously look into the braking.

h) Slight clunk as you engage drivetrain, may just be an engine mount or something clutch/drivetrain related. So minor I am counting it as a niggle not a concern.

i) Need to work out and test the AWS

j) Need to raise it. Its grounding out on a fast bumpy road or a high speed bump. Only 1" or so should do it and I don’t like the look of wheels sunk into the rims.

k) Need to look at all the camber, toe-in, offset and general basics - my guess is its been adjusted for looks not for correct performance. Its toed in a lot at the back, a personal dislike.

l) Need to ensure the turbos are working correctly. I am guessing turbo 1 engages almost instantly and turbo 2 with a high-pitched whine much later in the rev range.

Aside from that, its just cosmetics and niggles, quick task list:

Tasks all moved to my project thread

So overall I’m pretty pleased. It looks the part, I am already getting annoyed at the amount of roadside conversations its generating when I am busy!

I am guessing the big things to start working out are the aerofoil and aircon display - I can imagine both items or ancillary parts are hard to get and priced accordingly. I’ve found a US company who will repair the aircon unit for $74.99 plus shipping - given the fiddliness, I think I will do that.

I really want to show some genuine pics….I am VERY picky about detail and the photos make it look way better than it is…you probably know the guy or the car already - but I should be able to post more accurate pics shortly. Admittedly it looks fine from a metre or two away but my goal is to get it totally detailed and pristine.

Plan is to daily drive it and expand this list, buy and search for parts, for a month while I refurb my S6, then take the S6 back on the road and take this off for a month while I send away the aircon, strip the panels and deal with the paint & engine bay and all the other tasks that can’t be done while its on the road daily.

Then put it back on the road, keep working on how to improve performance and handling until I am confident I know it inside out and can be proud of it….

Shopping List

Shopping List all moved to my project thread

Paint error list - exterior - will keep working on this

Nearside blanking plate by front indicator - rust
Wing corner right beside it - rust under paint
Front bumper and top front clamshell - complete remove & refurb, poss reversing sensors
Rear bumper - complete remove & refurb, poss reversing sensors
Door edges, around handles and all similar rounded edges there is flaking

Here are his very artistic photos…I’ll post some more accurate ones soon as I start on the work….

I’ll make a proper thread to keep tabs on things. For now I placed an order with Rob at EE for clear lenses, weatherstrips, interior blue lighting, aero rebuild kit etc. Lots of little bits to get started with while I tackle the first priorities - getting the paint matched and checking its safety for night driving.

Hi Jamie

Glad you could make it on here… :wink:

Give me a call after 5pm One evening and we can go through the list and i can help you most of the problems

We have a guy in the UK who can rebuild the aircon unit without it needing to go the USA… Its a bit of a pig of a job to do though

Car looks wicked on the Rota GTR’s bit of a steal at that price is dude !!

And nice pics too… very atmospheric

Look forward to helping you get the old girl into a pristine example of a Mk1 GTO

Cheers Rob

Cheers Rob.

Sorry I didn’t call today. As you can see the list expanded from 4-5 things to 31!

Just hold off on that order until I get back to you m8. I haven’t even got the magnifying glass out yet, and I want to talk to you personally after a couple of test drives to go through the knocks, pings, sounds etc in case you have light to shed on some of the performance issues I’m experiencing. They are not major but I want them sorted.

I am trying to finish the new exhaust on the Audi tonight, get it back off the ramps and round the corner for MOT, so I can get the GTO up and check the underneath again in daylight on Saturday, maybe even leave her up the whole weekend so I can have a good poke about.

Pristine is the word…I won’t settle for less. Some things are better, and some things are worse, than I originally thought. I’ve been adding to what was a 3-line note for several days now.

I’ll not be buying anything before I talk to you so rest easy on that score.

I could do the aircon myself, but like everything else it just comes down to whether I’m better doing paying work that I am good at, and sending the stuff I don’t know about, away, to somebody who knows their stuff.

The Rota’s are good, and I think the price was good. But its good because he knew and I knew there were plenty flaws he wasn’t mentioning. Its gotta be right and it will be. I pulled out most of the back area panels today so I can start getting to the bottom of the rattles while I am DDing her. Much quieter already and nothing will be going back on until its solid, and not at all if its not necessary.

Main thing is I am convinced its not showing even 300bhp. Turbos may need overhauled, there could be tons wrong but I will get to the bottom of it.

Oh also, have to report. I have the coolest little 2-yo ever. Put the Stone Roses, The Music, Kasabian or the Seahorses on and he yells “Daddy, make it rouder”.

I can’t take this car down my main road cos there are roadworks and I’d be forced to one side and over a speed bump. So its living across the road for now.

So took him swimming this morning; I drove him up in the wife’s Mini and round the corner to the GTO. Asked him if he wanted to go in the black car or the silver car.

“Oooh, brack one daddy”.

Hauled him into the GTO which admirably fits a baby in the rear, I don’t think you could fit an adult in there.

Gave it a bit of speed out of the village.

“I rike it belly belly much”. “make it rouder daddy”

his small hands will be of much use in that engine bay.

Hi Jamie welcome to GTOUK 8)

Nice looking car , that is very low no wonder it is a firm ride , reckon your son is like the chineese guy I took out in mine , he liked things rouder and riked it lery lery much :lol: :lol:

Craig :slight_smile:

Yeah from what I see yours looks perfect at the rear, wheels sitting equidistant all round from the arch. I’ll be getting this sorted belly belly quickry, its stupid low, doesn’t make any sense.


Welcome to GTOUK, I like your wheels I have been looking at various rota wheels.

Dont worry you will get there with the issues.


Nice looking mk1 jeemy

most bits on that list are pretty straight forward time and bits not breaking/snapping when your getting them off will be your main problem

The rear aero is a doddle just make sure the screws are well soaked as they have a tendancy to rip out of there mouldings if there seized, If the front aero is in place you shouldnt be able to see the engine if you can see the engine its either been taken off or ripped off probably the latter

i would post some more but i got to get me arse off the train and onto the underground, i’m sure others will post to help out

mart :slight_smile:

Nice car! :slight_smile: I saw that one recently too, looks smart that! :slight_smile:

After a few good chats with the very helpful Rob, first order is placed. Quick fixes the lot, but incoming are:

Items all moved to my project thread

Seems like the engine doesn’t have the two big plugs at the front, so its the lesser-liked gen1. I only get to pop the hood for 2 mins each day as I drive past taking the kids to school as I stupidly brought it past the roadworks when there was a window and now its impassable until they move em. So I can’t be sure yet.

Pretty sure the lower aero front is missing. I’ve downloaded the workshop manuals but not started reading yet, but from memory I’m thinking the warning light will light if either doesn’t work, and one not functioning, precludes the other from doing so. So I need to get both back in operation. Rob had a bit of a sharp intake of breath when we started talking about shipping the aero tray, but happily it seems my upholsterer is 5 minutes down the road from him! So when I send my next load of seats, consoles and dashboards to be retrimmed, I can send the van down to Rob to pick up a load of bits - making me look now for crazy-sized things I wouldn’t otherwise have bought! Happy days, this project is creeping like crazy. I have a vision in my head of this car dripping in high gloss black and I think its gonna be great - but its gonna need a lot of repainting……and I may go for a pearl blue on the callipers.

So cleverly, I almost ordered a buttload of Toscana black but Rob said I may have the paint code wrong - waiting to hear back from him before I order paint.

Main thing I am concerned about is the hard jolt when you ease off the accelerator - Rob says the fuel transfer pipe between rails is the first port of call so we will see where that goes. There is a Subaru expert in the unit next door to me so I’ll get him to look at the motor once I can get it moved……

Order 2 is expanding daily, currently sits at:

Order 2 all moved to my project thread

Also got some suspension settings off Rob and realised why ECS doesn’t work, aftermarket suspension will kill it of course.

Hopefully my membership will process soon and I can get her out of the roadworks and down to the workshop to start the rebuild and post some photos. Dying to see what she can do but she is too wrecked to really evaluate just now.

Hopefully have a cleaner functioning car in a couple of weeks.

I checked my front aero when I got mine by looking under the front of the car, I could see it was still tucked up there so turned the aero on inside the car by pressing auto & crouched down under the front again & it had popped down :slight_smile: My rear aero is permanently stuck up though

Welcome to the club,
Very nice photos and by the detail in your to do list you really are going to have a well sorted car.
i, the AWS steering is just a flex of a couple of degrees and can be found on utube with a car up on four axle stands. With the age of these cars now if the rear rack leaks some choose to use a delete kit.
k, the massive camber on the rear wheels might be caused by not fitting adjustable camber arms when the car was lowered.
l, the turbos on these cars are the same size front and back and operate at the same time.
6, having the seats recovered is the most common way of sorting the seats out but obviously not the only way.
9, As far as I know you would of had a rear wiper originally.
14, these cars are known for scratches on windows. Some say even if you replace everything its not long before they start again.
30, on the center console you have to pull the latch up when you close it and then it will be latched shut.

Cheers Rob. Other Rob at EE is sending me a rear wiper kit, so I will refit that. The demister grid on the back window is a bit aged, so I may try to get that replaced if such a thing is possible, or get a replacement window from a breakers.

Once I get the car up on ramps I’ll have a look into the AWS as you suggest.

I’ve a bit more understanding of the turbos method of operation now. I’m going to take it slowly, brakes overhaul first, and the fuel rail pipe, then get to the bottom of the kickback if its still there, then start looking into the acceleration in more depth.

I think the seats are very in keeping with the car and its only a couple of panels that have suffered. When its on ramps I’ll haul them round to an upholsterer for him to have a look.

Once the doors are off and stripped I can check everything to see why the scratches are happening, I’ve read of a guy who managed to find new drop glass and it was scratched within days. Everything is preventable with a bit of diligence and I can polish scratches out of glass so hopefully that will be fixed shortly.

Latch is definitely missing but one is on the way.

Regarding the toe-in/camber, I believe according to the seller’s description that its all camber adjustable. So I will put the back wheels straight and raise it up. Then I’ll have the geometry properly done later on - I’ve heard good things about Pro-Grip who aren’t that far from me.

Rear aero is just 2 microswitches that will need soldering and 2 nylon sliders and a dolop of grease


Thanks mate, I have an attraction for 22-year-old cars so have plenty of PlusGas lying around. Just finalised design for the speaker system too.