The first Lancer Evo, manufactured by Mitsubishi Motors, was released in 1992 for the Japanese market. Unexpectedly, the car became desired in other countries and was released to the United Kingdom and various European markets. In 2003, Mitsubishi began exporting the Evo VIII to the United States due to the American interest in similar cars such as the Subaru Impreza WRX.
Since the initial release of the Evolution I in 1992, Mitsubishi has released ten versions of the vehicle. The tenth generation Mitsubishi AWD sports car, the Lancer Evolution X, was released in Japan in October 2007. In 2008, the Lancer was approved by the FIA as a "Group-N" vehicle, which requires more than 1,000 units with four seats to be produced in a year. Since its development, the Lancer has become a highly competitive rally race car and earned the respect of many.