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ARK Design MFD

Project EVO IX Part 5: ARK Designs and Mitsubishi Products

By Mike Kojima

Over the past few months we have been busy tuning Project EVO’s Engine, Brakes and Suspension.  This month we focused on some of the minor but important details that every performance car needs.

ARK Design products
Every car with aspirations of track driving needs accurate instruments, the EVO is no exception.  Factory gauges are very inaccurate, often lagging far behind what is actually going on.  In the case of the EVO, most of the important gauges are simply missing.  The EVO only has a water temperature gauge, ridiculous for a high performance car.

A turbo charged car that is always being tuned on needs a boost pressure gauge.  All cars need an oil pressure gauge and cars that are track driven need very accurate water temperature and oil temperature gauges, as turbo cars always seem to run on the edge of meltdown when pounded on a road course.  Factory gauges are notoriously inaccurate, usually only signaling trouble once the damage has already been done.

ARK Design
The Mitsubishi radio relocation kit moves the radio to the lower DIN bin on the dash so we could mount the ARK Gauges to the upper DIN location where the radio used to be.  They are easier to see there.

In the past getting decent gauges in your car would mean a triple gauge pod and the installation of a few more gauges in the dash.  Some people like the lots of gauges look but some people don’t.  A pillar pod with three big gauges is a pull me over signal for the police and a dash full of aftermarket gauges in all sorts of places screams Knight Rider.  If gauges are hidden in a glove box, they are not doing much good either; I mean what good is a hidden gauge?   With a lot of wires to hook up and run around, a plethora of gauges usually results in a bunch of untidy wiring under the dash and in the engine compartment with a problematic bunch of wires going through the firewall where they can chafe.  In our experience about 70-80% of all on-track failures are related to wiring and plumbing issues and frankly, stringing a bunch of wires around the car makes us nervous and proper wiring is a lot of tedious work.

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Comments
bigdave
bigdavelink
Monday, September 06, 2010 6:07 AM
You will probably find having the radio down lower is more comfortable to use while driving. Nice Evo!
8695Beaters
8695Beaterslink
Tuesday, September 07, 2010 2:03 AM
Don't feel bad about some bling parts on a street car. Fast cars with monocolor parts are boring to look at!

I was looking at the MFD to replace the stock dash in my 240SX. I already have a 3-gauge mount in the factory center vents, and was planning to remove the stock dash, fill the hole, and use either an AIM dash or the MFD to cover some of the missing gauges and add a few extra meters. Would the MFD work for that, or is it too small?
Dusty Duster
Dusty Dusterlink
Tuesday, September 07, 2010 4:23 AM
I'm looking forward to the MFD-II review. I really want to get one of those, but my vehicle isn't Japanese, so I'm not sure the original MFD would work too well, but OBD-II signals are supposed to be standardized across all vehicles sold in the US.
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