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Old 07-22-2010, 04:56 PM   #1
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Default Thinking of getting a Subaru...

I've always loved them, but just recently started to really think about picking one up. I don't want a new one... I'm looking for something around 5-6k. That being said I'm okay with having to fix it up a bit. I know there are some subaru buffs on here so I figured I'd ask for a few tips.

I know the basics, but is there anything subaru specific I should look for.. good and bad.

I'd really like to get the wagon, and I found a WRX Wagon for around 6.5k with 121k miles. Does that sound reasonable for one in good mechanical order? I only just started really digging into them so I haven't really found if that is a good price. From what I could tell, based on the mileage it seems like an okay price.

But then again I don't know how long these things usually last. I'm sure it varies but are there a lot of guys driving around with 100k plus subies?
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Old 07-22-2010, 05:14 PM   #2
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check compression/leakdown. one of the biggest engine problems on these cars is blown ringlands. specifically #4. check transmission thoroughly, most importantly 3rd gear on the later ones and 1st/2nd on the earlier ones. STAY AWAY from 02 WRX's.
Don't be afraid of turbo's on their way out. Easy and cheap to replace. Obviously try to get a non modded/unmolested one. If it has an atmospheric bov tell the owner he's a ******* retard.

If you have any specific questions feel free to ask. Car buying FAQ for these cars can be found on NASIOC and is very thorough.

good luck
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Old 07-22-2010, 05:58 PM   #3
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One good thing about the WRX wagons is that they are often over looked by people who want to mod a WRX but they are just as fun and can haul more.

18 psi, what don’t you like about the 02 WRX? Only bad thing I heard was the transmissions were weaker then the later ones.
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Old 07-22-2010, 05:59 PM   #4
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dont buy it off any punk looking kids or if it has any mods. subarus are the biggest car scene in mass and ive seen a bunch of them getting beat to **** on by kids with rich parents. I know one kid who went through like three transmissions in one

personally, i'd love to have a wrx or sti swapped gc8
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Old 07-22-2010, 06:09 PM   #5
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Gah the one I'm looking at is a 2002. I'm not really in any sort of hurry, so I'll hold off a bit more I guess and get one after reading through the car buying FAQ.
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:00 PM   #6
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Pink body panels are always a plus.
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:04 PM   #7
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yeah i just had a 04 wrx and the trans blows! oh and the wheel bearings all die. check for play. all of mine were toast at 37k miles
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:06 PM   #8
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18 psi, what donít you like about the 02 WRX? Only bad thing I heard was the transmissions were weaker then the later ones.
WRX's have weak transmissions. They are called the "glass box" for a reason. Well, the 02 has an EVEN weaker transmission. So much so that a lot of it was changed updated for 03, and even it was shitty, so it got upgraded for the 04.5-05 model year. Then the 06-07's got a 3.7fd and while have awesome gearing, 3rd gear was the weak link and kept breaking like a bitch. For 09+ they changed it to some other design of which I still don't know much about.

next is brakes. of all the wrx's, the 02's got the shittiest brakes. And had issues with brake lines.

next is radiator/fans. for 03 they got updated and changed a bit due to some **** ups in design.

There are other issues I just don't have the energy to get into.
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:07 PM   #9
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yeah i just had a 04 wrx and the trans blows! oh and the wheel bearings all die. check for play. all of mine were toast at 37k miles
looks like yours was rallied or abused.
Ive replaced bearings on many subaru's and its anywhere between 80-100k for fairly abused ones.
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:08 PM   #10
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My $0.02 in the matter.

I was also in the bandwagon for either a WRX wagon or a Forester XT recently. I was almost sure that is what I wanted, until I drove a friends '04 wagon 1000 miles in one day. I got to really know the car, and realized I hated the way it drove. I hated the brakes, I hated the clutch, I hated the gear shift feel, the ride was unimpressive, the handling was unimpressive with vague steering response, just overall not a fun or flattering car. I was very underwhelmed and have since decided against Subaru. Not saying everyones experience is the same, as apparently many people like them, but to me they just don't feel right.

PS, the interior is bland, and the seats are uncomfortable. I am more comfortable driving my tiny *** car with stock seats.
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:13 PM   #11
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My $0.02 in the matter.

I was also in the bandwagon for either a WRX wagon or a Forester XT recently. I was almost sure that is what I wanted, until I drove a friends '04 wagon 1000 miles in one day. I got to really know the car, and realized I hated the way it drove. I hated the brakes, I hated the clutch, I hated the gear shift feel, the ride was unimpressive, the handling was unimpressive with bland steering input, just overall not a fun or flattering car. I was very underwhelmed and have since decided against Subaru. Not saying everyones experience is the same, as apparently many people like them, but to me they just don't feel right.

PS, the interior is bland, and the seats are uncomfortable. I am more comfortable driving my tiny *** car with stock seats.
I couldn't disagree more.

Its no miata, weighing over 1000lbs more and having a low compression h-4, so steering input is obviously number and throttle response is lazier, but the torque and traction as well as sound are great. And with VERY few choice mods it absolutely transforms itself.

Opinions are like ********, so I'm not not hating. Its definitely not for everyone.


Come to CA and I'll let you drive a few PROPERLY modded ones. I have a feeling you will change your opinion REAL quick
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:21 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 18psi View Post
I couldn't disagree more.

Its no miata, weighing over 1000lbs more and having a low compression h-4, so steering input is obviously number and throttle response is lazier, but the torque and traction as well as sound are great. And with VERY few choice mods it absolutely transforms itself.

Opinions are like ********, so I'm not not hating. Its definitely not for everyone.


Come to CA and I'll let you drive a few PROPERLY modded ones. I have a feeling you will change your opinion REAL quick
With mods any turd can be made decent, I was referring to my opinion on the stock ones. Of course it could always be that his was abused in its 6 year life and is worn out. Either way, from what I saw it turned me off to Subaru. Maybe one day I will get a chance to drive another that I don't absolutely hate. Maybe it is just the Miata messing with my head. Everything about the WRX felt vague in comparison.
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:26 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NA6C-Guy View Post
With mods any turd can be made decent, I was referring to my opinion on the stock ones. Of course it could always be that his was abused in its 6 year life and is worn out. Either way, from what I saw it turned me off to Subaru. Maybe one day I will get a chance to drive another that I don't absolutely hate. Maybe it is just the Miata messing with my head. Everything about the WRX felt vague in comparison.
About 4 years ago i convinced a friend to get a WRX, on the premise it was a combination of Jeep and sport.

It's true. They feel like a hybrid between a sports car and a Wrangler. Recently, me and the friend put on a full 3" catless exhaust, uppipe, down pipe, accessport... some other stuff. Response has really picked up, the engine actually feels decent now.

The rest of a car? Still numb.

Disclaimer: My idea of a good family car is my modified 91 E30 318i or RX8. High bar to meet.
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:29 PM   #14
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With mods any turd can be made decent, ...
. Maybe it is just the Miata messing with my head. Everything about the WRX felt vague in comparison.
Isn't that EXACTLY what our cars are and what we do with them?

A miata is so slow stock a damn prius will give it a run for its money. And handling is NOT all that great on stock shocks and stock tires.

So I honestly don't know where you're getting that from.

for roughly 500 bux (tbe+3port solenoid+tune which is free) my 05 ran [email protected] and that's the 2.0L version. with that much in an 06+ well tuned and well driven you're looking at GOBS more torque due to .5L increase and avcs
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:30 PM   #15
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Any interest in a modded RHD '93?
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:45 PM   #16
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Find an STI from an adult who tracks it. That way you know its been maintained and respected.
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Old 07-22-2010, 08:08 PM   #17
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looks like yours was rallied or abused.
Ive replaced bearings on many subaru's and its anywhere between 80-100k for fairly abused ones.
well i am in hawaii and theres no race track. there used to be a long time ago tho. so its all been street miles i got rid of it at 38k miles for a 85 supra that i put a 1jzgte in
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Old 07-22-2010, 08:32 PM   #18
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I think for 7k an STI is out of the question. I'm not looking for anything amazing. If it needs work I'll do it.

Back in march I took care of a friends WRX for a month. I was switching between driving that and my miata. At first I didn't like it... I had to force myself to drive it instead of my miata. But as the month went on I got used to it, started get the feel for it, and by the end of the month I was only driving the WRX. Now keep in mind it was upstate NY so it was snowy/rainy and damn cold... so the maita was not exactly in it's best environment.

But by the end of the month I was fairly convinced I would eventually get one.

The 02' sounds pretty terrible and I think I'll try and steer clear of it.

On a different not I've been thinking of getting a old diesel Mercedes...slow as *****... but baller status.
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Old 07-22-2010, 09:07 PM   #19
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The shop I work for specializes in Subaru/Mazda stuff...18psi pretty much made every major point I would make.


The 2L WRXs tend to spin bearings more than crack ringlands from lack of oil or shitty oil, the 2.5 motors will crack them ALL THE TIME if not tuned correctly. We had a 7k mile 08 STi (stock) that cracked the #4 ringland...


You can find a few decent cars at 6k. At the mileage you are going to find them they are more than likely going to need:

A timing belt job (usually a failing idler that breaks and ruins your **** before a belt or water pump failure)
Struts
Clutch
Turbo
Up-Pipe Cat Failure
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Old 07-22-2010, 09:09 PM   #20
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Quote:
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Find an STI from an adult who tracks it. That way you know its been maintained and respected.
Honestly that isn't a bad idea. After all the stuff we have to fix at work I would recommend buying a track car with good compression that has been taken care of or a BONE stock Subaru.
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