Video: Hillclimb Champ Dances with 650-HP Eclipse

The Eclipse never found much of a home in the world of time attack or hillclimbs, but its potential as a drag car is well-known. This particular GSX was optimized for cornering and braking well enough to become the car to carry Marek Rybníček to the position of Czech Hill Climb Champion in both 2011 and 2012, so perhaps we’ve been missing something.

As this form of motorsport is very popular in that part of the world, it would seem that the GSX’s potential as a road racer might’ve been overlooked.

http://www.autosportfoto.sk/images/02-marek-rybn-ek-mitsubishi-eclipse-evo-650.jpg

Enkei RPF1 wheels and a simple-yet-effective aero kit give this GSX plenty of presence.

It’s really a remarkably quick car that allows the driver to extract its immense performance without looking too hurried or nervous. Just a tail that gently rotates as the power is applied, a continuous wave of torque – thanks largely to the sequential gearbox – and a supple, compliant ride. That composure over the bumps helps Rybníček seems very composed behind the wheel, which improves his precision on the narrow course.

The race is set in the picturesque hillclimb at Zámecký Vrch, which translates to Castle Hill, named as such because of a dilapidated fifteenth-century castle which sits atop the basalt hill.

Running through the countryside, the Mitsubishi exhibits good behavior the whole way through, only occasionally requiring a quick jab of opposite lock. The remainder of the time, the power is applied well, and the steering looks responsive and worthwhile. For those reasons, it’s surprising that the Eclipse was overlooked as a hillclimbing platform, and perhaps it deserves just a bit more credit.

 

About the author

Tommy Parry

Tommy Parry has been racing and writing about racing cars for the past seven years. As an automotive enthusiast from a young age, he worked jobs revolving around cars throughout high school, and tried his hand on the race track on his 20th birthday. After winning his first outdoor kart race, Tommy began working as an apprentice mechanic to amateur racers in the Bay Area to sharpen his mechanical understanding. He has worked as a track day instructor and automotive writer since 2012, and continues to race karts, formula cars, sedans, and rally cars in the San Francisco region.
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