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plance1 Dork
6/30/12 5:49 p.m.

oh, this is back when the WRX was actually decent looking.....

Jaynen Reader
6/30/12 5:50 p.m.

Do the mod potential for these share a lot with the forester XTs also? I was debating one of those a while back

friedgreencorrado PowerDork
6/30/12 5:58 p.m.
Tom Suddard wrote: Here's what we have to work with: What do you think?

I had forgotten just how good looking they were back then. I kind of want one.

Woody GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
6/30/12 6:38 p.m.
MrJoshua wrote: And I am really really glad someone else bought it first because I was seriously considering making this my second unnecessary great purchase from Woody.

Well, you could still buy the Boxster wheels if you want...

Woody GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
6/30/12 6:46 p.m.
MrJoshua wrote: I agree that the prices are on the way down, but I recently spent a couple of months shopping for and buying one and nothing not totaled is under $3k yet. They are still a screaming deal, but not that cheap.

For reference, I sold this car last summer. It was two years newer (2004), the body and interior were perfect, no modifications, tires and brakes were brand new, one owner (me), 125k miles and the original clutch.

I started advertising it around $9500 and got no response. I got a couple of people to take a look at $8500 and finally sold it to a dealer for $7500 because I was motivated.

Carmax offered me $4k for it.


MrJoshua PowerDork
6/30/12 7:25 p.m.

State Farm wanted me to pay $2,700 to keep our totaled '03 120k bugeye because that's what they get on average for them. During my search for a replacement with similar miles I found tons of examples in the >$6,500 range.

I did just do a search for "By Owner" cars from $100-$5,000 within 500 miles of Atlanta. There were several promising cars in the $4,500-$5,000 range that looked like they could be decent DD's as they sit. There WERE two, one at $2,700 and one at $3,000 that looked similar to the Suddard WRX so I have to take back the "no examples sub $3k" comment. It looks like right around $3k you can get into a beater WRX. That is one heck of a performance bargain.

Dav New Reader
7/1/12 9:35 a.m.

Budget track car--NOT built to any autox/roadracing specific class rules. Just a cheap, fun, potent car to take to the track and hoon around.

jstein77 Dork
7/1/12 10:38 a.m.

Tim - I assume you're still doing the 818 project as well. Going to look for another donor for that? Better make sure you can actually find one before you decide to keep the WoodMobile intact.

sachilles Dork
7/1/12 12:23 p.m.

You can do open source tuning with a $19 usb VAG cable, and any other turbo subaru from 2002-2005. After that Tacitrix is the only one that will work for reflashing.

frenchy New Reader
7/1/12 1:32 p.m.
Jaynen wrote: Do the mod potential for these share a lot with the forester XTs also? I was debating one of those a while back

They certainly do. Pretty much all the legacy, forrester, wrx bits are interchangeable. I believe the XT shares more with the 2.5gt Legacy and STI than the older 2.0 WRX.

I want this to be an extreme budget build. See how much you can build it up for cheap.

Uncoiled Reader
7/1/12 5:16 p.m.

This is awesome! I will be watching this VERY closely!

Vigo SuperDork
7/1/12 6:16 p.m.
The engine makes the car move seriously fast right out of the box.

That must be why there are videos of nearly-stock Tauruses beating them in street races on the internet.

Just stirring the pot.

Woody GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
7/1/12 7:54 p.m.

In reply to Vigo:

Dude, your mom's Taurus sounds awesome!

I bet she's never even had to change the clutch. Guess it wasn't raining that day either...

Jaynen Reader
7/1/12 9:18 p.m.

Random and tangent but has anyone ever put the taurus SHO motor in something not FWD? NM did some googlefu don't want to derail

7/1/12 10:11 p.m.

I will be following this with interest.

I bought my 2002 WRX from a friend this winter and got a fantastic deal also.

Mine already has:

1) COBB Accessport V1

2) Full SS Turbo Back - Lachute Peformance

3) Catless Up-pipe

I have been running it in the "Econo" map all winter and I recently did a day trip and got about 30 mpg (35 mpg - imperial gallons) with it.

I just flipped over to the Stage 2 map and wow does it haul. I am a little worried about leaving it there. It is my DD and it only has 65k miles on it. I want it to last, so I might back down from the Stage 2 map.

I need to get some newer pics and fix the rust:

Jaynen Reader
7/1/12 11:53 p.m.

When you swap maps is it instantaneous, or do you have to stop the car, turn it off disconnect the battery or anything else first?

amg_rx7 Dork
7/1/12 11:58 p.m.

Just do the 818. That sounds cool.

I'm bored with hearing about Subies...

7/2/12 12:27 a.m.

In reply to Jaynen:

With the V1 that I have you have to stop, turn the car off and load the map with the key in the "on" position but not running.

I takes a minute or so to load the map.

Tim Suddard
Tim Suddard Publisher
7/5/12 6:08 a.m.

We took the car to AJW Performance and they got the air working, put an axle in it (boot was bad), replaced the stock exhaust with a take-off unit they had, fixed a coolant leak and a few other things. The bill was about $1000. So, although we are still thrilled, our $2012 WRX, instantly needed a set of tires and $1000 worth of work to safely drive to Florida. it still has about $1200-1500 worth of body damage, needs brakes all the way around and has some subframe rust. This piece is easily repaired or replaced, but can wait until we get back to Florida.

So, there is no free lunch. We will have $5000 in this before it is over. A car with this many miles isn't worth that much. That said, we can put the money in a little at a time and this is certainly the way we like to do things here at GRM. The fact that you can make so much power so cheaply on these cars intrigues me.

We have been driving the car all over New England this week and really love it. Forgot how fun these things are. Margie even thinks she might want to replace her E28 BMW with it. We will see.

I think we will do a quick project car series on this car, and then do some rallycross events with it and source a 2.5 liter, lower mile drivetrain for the 818, which we are definitely still doing.

Woody GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
7/5/12 7:45 a.m.
Tim Suddard wrote: We have been driving the car all over New England this week and really love it. Forgot how fun these things are. Margie even thinks she might want to replace her E28 BMW with it. We will see.

Hmmm.......I've been thinking about one of those.

njansenv Dork
7/5/12 7:54 a.m.

I had a recent opportunity to drive a similar vintage WRX lately while performing an informal (semi-active) suspension test - "more than the sum of it's parts" was the phrase that came to mind. Loads of fun.

Brett_Murphy GRM+ Memberand Dork
7/5/12 8:16 p.m.

As others have said, there is a wealth of knowledge for these cars sitting in places like NASOIC and Dirty Impreza.

I'd like to see a suspension setup that is the ultimate compromise- works well enough not to be dangerous on the street, the track, autocross and rallycross. Would some custom King Springs that are stiffer and add maybe 1/2 of ride height be the ticket for this?

DIY skidplates. Any build is worthless without these.

I'd like to see how you take that high mileage car and make the thing reliable- engine, turbo, everything.

Will the limited slip rear out of a Forester XT work in an Impreza? It's got a lower ratio, so it might render 1st gear moot but might yield benefits in the upper gears (I'm considering going the other way in my XT, to get a touch better highway mileage).

I'm also intrigued by the open source tuning; I've been considering that for my Forester as well.

Teh E36 M3
Teh E36 M3 Dork
7/5/12 8:42 p.m.

I've got an '02 wagon. Did hotchkis sways, d-sport struts and have the primitive plates front and diff. I also did a free "stage zero" xpt tuning open source tune and it does feel like the turbo spools earlier. If I did the struts again, I would consider using forester pieces, as I think they look cool "lifted" for rallycross. I did one rallycross, but it was our only car, and I blew a sidewall while going 40mph sideways... it was a kick in the pants, but I had to give it up for prudence sake.

Brett_Murphy GRM+ Memberand Dork
7/6/12 2:08 p.m.

I think a Forester suspension swap to a WRX is more involved than just bolting on the struts on a regular WRX due to the height, but I could be mistaken- I never really looked at going that way since I don't have a WRX, but a few people in my local car club who crawl NASOIC and Dirty Impreza seemed to mention something about the swaybar mounts and control arm bushings.

Woody GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
7/6/12 2:13 p.m.

If you're raising a WRX, you're probably not that worried about sway bars.

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