Project Airtrek – The Beginning

I’ve been wanting to change car for a long time, but due to saving for something else and financial commitments it really wasn’t a smart thing to do. So I had to bite my tongue, suck it up and carry on.

Not that I minded my previous car, the best Proton ever made, the Lotus tuned Satria GTi 16v.

Proton Satria GTi 16v

It was a great car with a solid engine the 4G93P, I spent some money on it sorting it out and it ran really well. It was getting too hard and too low and having a two door car especially with a growing dog (and growing girlfriend) was getting very inpractical.

The hardness came from performance tyres, TEIN adjustable suspension, nylon bushes and whiteline sway bars. It cornered like it was on rails, great for the track, hard cornering and lane weaving but not so great for everyday bumpy Malaysian roads.

I did quite a lot of performance mods to it too (mivec manifold, custom exhaust etc) without going the turbo route I got a lot of power from an N/A car. The next ride I wanted however must be a turbo! I’d always wanted a turbo car so I started looking around. Plus I needed something auto/tiptronic and with 4 doors, so that ruled out coupes and sports cars.

My budget was around RM80k++ up to about RM85k max, in that category I found the Volvo S40 2.0 Turbo, Volvo S60 T5 and the Mitsubishi Airtrek Turbo.

At around the RM110k mark was the Evo 7.5, older Subarus (including Impreza and Forrester) and more sedan type cars like Altezza.

I did look at the Caldina, but it starts to get expensive then at around RM125k for a decent spec Caldina Z or GT.

After a lot of research and the fact I’d always loved the look of the car I decided on the Mitsubishi Airtrek Turbo, the parts were reasonably priced, plenty of mods available, reliable gearbox and engine and plenty of space.

It’s basically a Mitsubishi Evo 7.5 GTA (The auto variant) with a larger body (same engine, smaller turbo, same chassis, same gearbox) pushing out 240bhp standard. Plus a massive amount of aftermarket parts and mods are available as most Evo 7/8/9 parts just slot on.

So recently I was in the position to get the car, I didn’t have to worry about downpayment as I was trading the Satria in. I just needed enough money to do some repairs on the car and budget for stuff like tyres, timing belt etc.

I started looking around and found Airtreks in various conditions and various mileages, mostly I was looking at 2003 models. Some claiming as low as 40,000km (probably clock wound back) up to massive 180,000km (and not that much cheaper).

I found one with a reasonable mileage and an excellent interior in Puchong, with around 110,000km, 1 owner and original paintwork (accident free) advertised for RM88,800.

Mitsubishi Airtrek Turbo

After popping the bonnet, I realized I’d found a good one here when the red painted rocker cover and tomei branded/painted intercooler mount popped out at me.

I also noticed the Raizin voltage stabilizer and a Greddy blow off valve.

Airtrek Turbo Tomei

Plus the RalliArt torsion bar, this car had some serious money spent on it and the engine bay was immaculate making me think it had been well cared for.

It had no service history however and I suspected the timing belt and engine mounts needed to be changed.

The gearbox seemed fine tho and the power was still there (boosted to 1 bar), a bit of misfiring tho (probably spark plugs, haven’t diagnosed yet).

They offered me a fair price for my GTi and dropped the Airtrek price to a level I was comfortable with, so I went ahead and signed the papers, the loan was approved by Public Bank and I took ownership of the car last Friday!

Out with the old and in with the new. Say bye bye GTi.

Satria GTi vs Airtrek Turbo

I’ll be having some work done on the car, so I’ll document that soon. Then maybe some mods later – w00t. So far seems to good, I reached a theoretical speed of 200km/h last night whilst testing the car (obviously on a dyno or a private road or something) so the JDM 180km/h speed cut has definitely been removed.

Need to do more diagnostics and testing on the car though to see what has been modified and what needs tweaking/tuning/replacing etc.

Airtrek power! You can find all posts about this car under Project Airtrek.




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20 Responses to Project Airtrek – The Beginning

  1. James October 7, 2009 at 1:03 pm #

    That’s a nice car. That engine looks so clean for second hand. Looks like they cleaned it just for you. 🙂

  2. suanie October 7, 2009 at 1:08 pm #

    bye satria gti!

  3. blink4blog October 7, 2009 at 1:17 pm #

    bro… have u ever encountered with a vios turbo at puchong?

  4. stephenstreets October 7, 2009 at 1:45 pm #

    That is such an awesome airtrek!!!

  5. Myhorng October 7, 2009 at 1:49 pm #

    growing gf <— LOLROF

    finally Aritrek is here.

  6. ogolong October 7, 2009 at 1:54 pm #

    “growing girlfriend” – ahaahahahaha.

    in that case, it’s either get her to diet, or that RM500 exhaust mod to add several hp is gonna get wasted ahahahahahaha

    Ride looks good in black, wheels not bad either. Good job!


  7. KY October 7, 2009 at 2:32 pm #

    oh, where’s this theoretical speed test? i wanna do it too! 😀

  8. Ranga October 7, 2009 at 2:44 pm #

    “(obviously on a dyno or a private road or something)”

    Haha! I’d like to know where exactly the “or something” is.

  9. Tan Yee Hou October 7, 2009 at 2:51 pm #

    Hmm why auto arr dude? Its like time to mature up or something?

    Nice funky car all the same. Black is evil.

  10. ShaolinTiger October 7, 2009 at 4:40 pm #

    James: Nah just well kept, clean also won’t look like that. The interior is spotless too like a new car.

    suanie: Yes finally!

    blink4blog: Nah not around Puchong much, just bought the car there. Why is it yours?

    stephenstreets: Thanks, it’s a beauty indeed.

    Myhorng: Hahaha, yah at last! Time for you to change now!

    ogolong: LOL thanks, yah just need to get the rims crystal cut and polished and they’ll be sweet.

    KY: Ar…hmmm, somewhere la!

    Ranga: My little secret. Next aim, find top speed.

    Tan Yee Hou: Haha yah something like that, partially so gf can drive the car back when I’m drunk and well in 5 years you’ll realize why too. Plus AT has come so far, this aint no normal box it’s the Evo 7.5 GTA gearbox with 5 speeds can handle up to 350bhp.

  11. michaelooi October 7, 2009 at 6:37 pm #

    oooh 88k for that sweet ride! nice!

  12. Tan Yee Hou October 7, 2009 at 10:54 pm #

    Does this have anything to do with the growing girlfriend statement?


  13. Ming October 8, 2009 at 12:19 am #

    Congratulations! Definitely wanna see how project air tek goes. It is a good quick and practical car!

  14. Mark Leo October 8, 2009 at 1:53 am #

    Woot! Can’t wait to see what you are going to mod your Airtrek with! I suggest a warp drive and a photon torpedo launcher 😉

  15. ah loon October 8, 2009 at 9:49 am #

    I cant wait to read abt ur project airtrack in the future… i’ve always like to read ur blogs on ur cars… love it and cant wait for it…!!

  16. moons October 8, 2009 at 5:04 pm #

    Sweet looking car.

    The color itself looks bad ass and I bet its gonna be even badder with you and your new gangsta beard in the wheel haha.

    Hmm.. car mods, maybe something along the lines of techy or geeky? 😀

  17. Mellissa October 9, 2009 at 11:44 am #

    So we’re not car twins anymore? 🙁 Boooo!

    Growing girlfriend –> HAHA OMG DAMN BAD

  18. ShaolinTiger October 9, 2009 at 4:29 pm #

    michaelooi: Got it for less than that in the end 😀

    Tan Yee Hou: I take the 5th..

    Ming: Thanks, it is indeed an excellent vehicle.

    Mark Leo: Sounds very Star Trek heh.

    ah loon: Thanks! More updates coming soon.

    moons: Heh thanks, it suites my new look indeed. Not sure on the geeky mods, will see about that.

    Mellissa: Yah indeed, onwards and upwards!

  19. shahril October 30, 2009 at 10:51 pm #

    going to follow ur step..intend to switch my gti to airtrek

  20. ShaolinTiger November 3, 2009 at 12:59 pm #

    shahril: Make it happen! Join the Airtrek club when you’re done.

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