I guess it’s safe to say that no car in the Philippine market has ever had more cult followers than the Lancer Boxtype. These cars codenamed the (A172A–A176A) first came out in 1979, a complete redesign of the marque to replace the aging A70 series. The new Lancer is everything the old one is not and evidently there was almost no trace of DNA of the older version can be seen with the new edition.
While the peculiar boxy design of the 80s cars have not been so popular among many car critics, the Lancer crowd seemed to look at it as an advantage. And although almost every other sedan in the market during that era could arguably be a “box-type” in its own right, that nickname has always been strictly exclusive to the Lancer.
The Lancer came out with a bunch of engine options in Japan however, in the Philippine market, most Box Types carry either a 1.4L 4G33 or a 1.6-liter 4G32 inline 4 motor. The Boxtype is also the last rear wheel drive Lancer that Mitsubishi built, which perhaps explains why this car had so many followings. Its potential could be limitless if you know how to twitch it.
Although this Lancer was famous in Asia, Australia and Europe, ironically, the Boxtype never made it to the U.S. market. So when Lancers that were imported to the U.S. would show up at some Japanese car shows, only the die-hard tuner car fanatics (and most Filipinos of course) recognize the car.
Today, many Lancer Boxtypes that may have been forgotten for a short while are now being resurrected by aficionados. Lancers are being restored, and many are once again being modified and “hot-rodded” especially with the availability of endless aftermarket parts. Bigger and more powerful engines such as the DOHC 4G63 engines are available and will fit like a glove, if cost is no object for you of course.
By the way, if you own one, whether it’s a project or a councour quality car, it will not take you much of an effort to find other aficionados to hang out with. Lancer Boxtype clubs are all over and
members are very friendly and helpful.
The Boxtype continued its production until 1987 (ok, some would say 1988) and was replaced by the completely redesigned front wheel drive Mirage-based Lancer.
Enjoy some photos of these cool Lancer Boxtypes sent to Lumang Oto by readers over the years. Check them out! Do you own a Lancer Box Type? Share it to the Lumang Oto Community