1997 Mitsubishi GTO - Photo by Regrozenah
During the development of the GTO in the late 1980s, Japan (and the rest of the world) was in the midst of a Ferrari frenzy, with values of all models skyrocketing. It’s perhaps no surprise then that when Mitsubishi was looking for a name for their sporty HSX show car, they revived the name of an old Mitsubishi—the Gallant GTO—which itself was named after the famous Ferrari. The name worked great in Japan, where the local car culture didn’t object to a Mitsubishi being named after a Ferrari, but elsewhere it was called the 3000GT (or in North America, also as the Dodge Stealth). Earlier cars were gizmo-laden, complex machines but, by 1997, many of the gimmicks were stripped from the vehicle and a purity of concept remained. Equipped with all-wheel drive and a 320 horsepower, twin-turbocharged V6, this is a fast, grippy coupe. Although it’s large and rather heavy, its performance is undeniable, and the shark-nosed look marks it as one of the most aggressive performance vehicles to come out of Japan.