Sorry, I'm kind of long winded. For the meat of the story, skip down about 4 paragraphs...
Well, out of curiosity, I called my friend who works at the local Mistubishi dealership yesterday. I was just calling to say hi, but I asked him about the EVO. I was mainly wondering what kind of markup they were putting on the car. I have heard some dealers are getting $15k over sticker. Anyways, they are asking $5k over.
So, after that, I ask "When are you going to get one?" He puts me on hold to ask, and then comes back and says "Actually, we're getting 2 tonight. One's already sold, and the guy is in the showroom waiting on it. The other one will probably be sold by tomorrow. The truck will be here at about 5 pm." I tell him I'd like to see one. He says to come by at about 8 (closing time) and he'd let me drive the one that wasn't sold.
So, I get there, and the truck had apparently been delayed because it followed me into the parking lot. The guy who bought the first one had gotten tired of waiting and went to eat dinner. My friend called the guy on his cell phone and he said he'd be right there. The truck proceeded to unload the cars, and my friend let me drive one of the EVO's around to the back of the building. Obviously I couldn't tell anything about it like that.
We get to talking with the guy that bought the first one. I tell him about my WRX, and he says he'd been considering one until he heard about the EVO. He didn't know about the STI. Anyways, he offers to let me drive his EVO. Of course, I jump at the opportunity. After about 2 hours worth of paperwork and whatever else (it's now about 10:45 pm) he's ready to leave. He asks me if I still want to drive it. I say, "Sure". So, we get in and he drives it to the gas station. The whole way he's acting like a schoolgirl (I'd guess he's about 35) and talking about how much he already loves this car. His previous car was an S2000.
So far, I can tell the car rides stiffer than a stock WRX. The engine sounds pretty good for being stock as well. We get gas, and he hands me the keys.
Now, here's my impression....
Seats feel pretty good. A little tight for me - I'm about 245 pounds, and probably not in the best shape since I quit playing hockey, so it's not as comfortable as my WRX in my eyes. But, still nice. Clutch feels pretty good for a brand new car.
I didn't want to run it hard since it was new, but they guy was trying to get me to run it a little. It seems like boost comes on a little earlier than a stock WRX, but tapers off more quickly as well. I guess I was driving it about 75% or so. Brakes are much better than stock WRX's, however. Shifter feels about like my WRX with the factory short throw shifter. The car handles pretty well. I'd say on par with my WRX (which has the stock suspension and wheels/tires). I expected a little more with the larger wheels and better tires.
All things considered, I think the EVO is nice, but not $35k nice. If it were the same price as a WRX, it would definately be a tough decision, but as it stands, it's not worth the extra money to me. Also, considering the STI is going to be roughly the same price as the EVO, the EVO is definately not at the top of the list.