Back in August on 86 Day, this very rare Mitsubishi GTO (aka 3000GT VR4) showed up to our meet – breaking necks all over the gathering, and don’t forget, two R32 Skyline GT-Rs were in the parking lot at the same time – so seeing a Mitsubishi 3000GT VR4 still around, running, and in good shape is amazing enough, let alone a modified example like this one.
The 3000GT was one of the Japanese Supercars of the 90s, ranked among the likes of the Z32 Nissan 300ZX Twin Turbo, Toyota Supra Mk IV Turbo and R32-R33 Nissan Skyline GT-R – and the GTO/3000GT lives up to the standard you’d expect for its era, packed full of cutting-edge-for-the-time technologies, like All-Wheel-Steering and Active Aerodynamics, in addition to its already complex AWD drivetrain.
It was in need of new wheels – and an alignment. And with 4-wheel-steering, alignment can be a tricky bugger – fortunately our team of Mod Experts like Blake aren’t intimidated by that kind of challenge, so Blake got it scheduled, and we got to work giving this 3000GT some much-needed love.
This car is something of a time capsule – it’s a perfect snapshot of where automotive tuner culture was 15 years ago – and sheds light on how far modding has come since then.
This Mitsubishi 3000GT is a later-production example, one of the last few to come off the line and by all accounts, the best looking of the production run.
Despite sitting low on TEIN Coilovers, the car still had its stock wheels, and the owner had a very specific wheel style and fitment in mind, bringing in a set of ROTA 5-Spoke wheels, custom powdercoated race gold. While the fitment isn’t what we’d have recommended, we were able to make it work.
Here’s how it looked on the OEM chrome wheels. We really don’t know what people were thinking back in the 90s, Chrome looked awful even back then – so sending those heavy stock wheels by the wayside is a huge improvement, even with basic aftermarket wheel like ROTAs.
Up front, the car gives you its first hints that it’s not really stock. A bigass front mount intercooler fills the lower grille openings, the tubing for it just barely able to fit behind the bumper.Under the hood, the engine bay is beautiful, it’s straight out of 1999 in the best kind of way. While the polished look isn’t “In” these days, it always “WOWs” people when the hood’s open.
Up front is a bigass KOYORAD Radiator, and we can make out what looks like a TIAL Blow Off Valve amongst that nest of polished aluminum and silicon hoses.The MAF has been upgraded with an HPS box and a K&N High Flow Filter.
We should mention that your author grew up not 10 minutes away from Mitsubishi North America, and we’ve never seen a 3000GT interior this complete, not at Mitsubishi Owner’s Day nor on display in Mitsubishi’s little museum. Don’t mind the floormats, because if the carpet of your 15 year old car was this impeccable, would you step on the floor? The pillar gauges are cleanly mounted and appropriate for the era.Of course, as is only proper, there’s no pitiful automatic here, only a proper 6-speed manual and the third pedal. I shudder to think of this drivetrain combination with an automatic.
After some work, we got the 3000GT Wheels mounted and balanced and installed onto the car. The Race Gold powdercoat goes well with the white. After fitting the wheels, we pulled it onto the rack and dialed in the coilovers.
Then it was time to pull the car outside to appreciate the change in the sunlight. Out in the sun, the Race Gold powdercoat on the ROTA 5-spoke wheels really stands out. Co-Founder Mike and Sr Tech Dave look on, assessing how the color came out. The fitment’s a bit aggressive, but we’re told that’s what’s desired for the 3000GT.
Though the glory of this JDM supercar may have faded like its TWIN TURBO quarter-window sticker, it’s still a headturner today. All told, we’re pretty happy with how this 3000GT turned out and glad to see this rare 90s classic still out on the road.
We hope you enjoyed the photos, and we’ll see you next time!
Interested in modding your car, whether it’s a late model BMW, FR-S, Focus or a 90s JDM Supercar? Need something installed? Talk to the Mod Experts like Blake (x8011 for Blake), give us a call at 714-582-3330 to chat with our team of experts or stop by the ModAuto showroom in La Habra CA during business hours (8-5 M-Sat) and talk to our experts in person.
Thanks for reading, see you next time!
Story & Photos Nick Gregson