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neon4891
neon4891 SuperDork
7/10/09 8:18 p.m.

I have been looking into WRXs and have found this, an '02 with 104k. Red Bugeye Any things to look out for? I'm doing my best to not go to the dealer tomarrow. Any words of advice? I would probly use my neon as trade and this would become my DD.

It is funny, the other day I was saying my next car should be a WRX, I would want something as fast or faster than what I have now, and RWD is not an option untill I move farther south.

maroon92
maroon92 SuperDork
7/10/09 8:23 p.m.

RWD is fine in the north with the right tires...I drove a 92 Crown Vic on Winter i-Pikes for three winters without even getting stuck.

Osterkraut
Osterkraut Dork
7/10/09 8:28 p.m.

Transmission and window regulators are pretty much all you really need to worry about.

Woody
Woody GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
7/10/09 8:30 p.m.

That car's getting close to needing a timing belt.

Dpvog
Dpvog New Reader
7/10/09 9:08 p.m.

In reply to neon4891:

Bunch of questions:

Have you done a carfax? Any accident hx or title problems show up? (Don't trust the dealer's sanitized carfax, do your own!!!) Any sign of respray or bodywork? How many prior owners? Did they set a trade allowance for the Neon? Do you owe anything on the Neon? Have you considered a brand new 170hp, 5spd, 4wd Impreza for just $15500, with a new car warranty? You give up a bit of umph at the top, but for only 5500 more, you get a brand new car with zero miles instead of 104k, a much less peaky motor, a broader torque band, and seven years newer. Little old ladies don't drive WRXs. It's possible the car didn't live that gentle of a life. My advice? Forget the 104k mile WRX, spend the extra 5.5k and get the new 170hp Impreza! At very least, drive the brand new Impreza, and see how it compares to the (possibly very tired) used, seven year old, 104k mile WRX. One last thing to think about. You are financing a car with 104k miles. How long do you intend to finance for and how many miles will the car probably have when you pay it off? Will it even last until your payments are finished? Have you talked to your parents about this idea??? If you were my son, you'd be grounded for life for even considering this TOTALLY insane deal. Last but not least, if the Subaru dealer won't sell you a new Impreza for 15.5 to 15.8k (BEFORE the Neon trade-in) you are definitely at the WRONG Subaru dealer. I live in Massachusetts. You're not that far away. If you can't find a dealer who will sell you a new Impreza for the right price, PM me and I'll make sure you wind up with a fair deal. Oh yes, one last important point. What maroon92 said is absolutely right. You do not need 4wd. With good snow tires, rwd will work well enough, and front wheel drive with snow tires will get you through just about anything. -Doug

wherethefmi
wherethefmi Dork
7/10/09 9:59 p.m.

Rear axles, if it's been launched hard too much, that never happens in a WRX though And I think the weak point is the second gear synchro on the transmission, I'll refer you to my stand by site, actually there's 2, clubwrx.net, pretty friendly folk there, though not anywhere near like here, and the information overload that is Nasioc.com that and make sure all the driveline fluids have been freshened.

wherethefmi
wherethefmi Dork
7/10/09 10:01 p.m.

PS, shoot for 8k and settle at 8500, or 8750ish

pinchvalve
pinchvalve GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
7/10/09 10:14 p.m.

Women will throw themselves at you. That's all you have to watch out for.

grinch77
grinch77 Reader
7/10/09 10:41 p.m.

If it has a aftermarket blow off walk away. If it is missing heat shields around the turbo walk away. Pretty much if there is any aftermarket stuff walk away from it unless you get a hell of a warranty with it.I purchased a '04 wagon in January with 72k on it for $10,200.I kept getting misfire code on cylinder #2.I changed plugs then coil packs,front 02 sensor,and fuel filter turned out to be a cracked piston for some unknown reason I walked into the only honest used car dealer left in America. They ended up paying for all the parts I tried to fix it with plus a new K&N intake paid for the motor rebuild then the tranny blew out third gear when getting tuned after the rebuild and after that the clutch blew out and they paid for that.The whole time that the car was being rebuilt they put me in a loaner car as well.I've sent three friend to them to buy Subies as well and they have had zero problems with there cars I guess I got the turd out of the lot but now I've got a whole new motor and drive train pretty much.

Brust
Brust Reader
7/11/09 3:37 a.m.

Wow Grinch- you are a luck SOB- please name the dealer. I think that's fair given what they've done to make it right.

Regardless, I'm a 2002 wrx wagon owner who loves the car. Sorry, no 170 hp impreza will ever compare to the wrx, even with the new car smell and the better low end torque. If the man wants a new car, make it a wrx. There are too many go fast parts you'd have to change to make up the 5-7k difference in price to make it as fast as a stock 2002.

Problem is, a lot of folks bought these guys and trashed 'em. What you want to make sure of is 2nd gear synchro as mentioned. Also, when looking for engine mods, it's not as important to look for aftermarket stuff as it is to look for "back to stock" replacement. Spend a few minutes on the classifieds section of NASIOC and you find great parts from guys going "back to stock" in order to sell their WRX's as granny church-mobiles. They aren't by any stretch. I'd do my best to check (if it's even possible) for new turbo gaskets or any work done in that area. I'd almost trust a lightly modded wrx more than a "stock" wrx.

All this said, I'm partly considering an '02-03 (bugeye only) wrx as our second car for my commute). We already have an '02 WRX wagon that I and the wife love.

car39
car39 Reader
7/11/09 8:27 a.m.

You've got to assume it's been ridden hard and put away wet. When I sold my 02 I made sure the new buyer knew it had been on track and autocrossed, gave him web links to results and video so there was no buyers remorse.

grinch77
grinch77 Reader
7/11/09 8:36 a.m.
Brust wrote: Wow Grinch- you are a luck SOB- please name the dealer. I think that's fair given what they've done to make it right.

I was nothing but happy with there service.The guy they use for there Subaru work is also a Master Subaru Tech for a large Subaru dealer as well.Here is there website they always get a few WRX's in. http://www.competitionautosales.com/

Osterkraut
Osterkraut Dork
7/11/09 8:45 a.m.

Buy a new Impreza for $5,500 dollars more?

Why pay that much more for an AWD Camry?

daytonaer
daytonaer Reader
7/11/09 10:09 a.m.
maroon92 wrote: RWD is fine in the north with the right tires...I drove a 92 Crown Vic on Winter i-Pikes for three winters without even getting stuck.

Sorry, I don't have anything informative to add about the subaru, but neon4981 is in Ithica NY.

The amount of steep hills, gorges and lake effect snow would make me steer away from rwd with snowies in a DD. Added stress in a commute is not fun, even if its mostly mentally taxing.To put it into perspective I would not want to drive around Ithica in any-wheel drive in a snow storm and I'm no stranger to driving in the snow.

If your borrowing money, an AWD camry isn't a half bad idea.

wherethefmi
wherethefmi Dork
7/11/09 11:19 a.m.

My 06 I sold, had a Downpipe installed, and the ECU had been flashed, modded doesn't always mean death to a WRX, plus I gave him all the stock parts, and the Sti springs I had failed to install. No help here just defending the modded wrx, but that one he's looking at looks unmolested.

Dpvog
Dpvog New Reader
7/11/09 11:21 a.m.

In reply to Osterkraut:

Hmmm, let's see now: Warranty, broader torque band, (ie, more and earlier low end power) 104k fewer miles, seven years newer, no Stig wannabe has ever driven it before, no repairs to all the things that can break after 104k miles.

Remember, this is not just a toy. This is both his fun car AND his DD. He maybe, possibly can't afford car payments along with transmission replacements, new struts, window regulators, tires, cv joints, timing belt, and all the other things that die on a seven year old car with 104k miles. And a new Impreza is simply and purely better in many ways (and in some ways, actually more fun) than a beat to $@&^#* seven year old WRX .-Doug

Osterkraut said: Buy a new Impreza for $5,500 dollars more? Why pay that much more for an AWD Camry?
SVreX
SVreX SuperDork
7/11/09 11:39 a.m.

I'm always amazed when people say, "I gotta have AWD for the snow".

I grew up in the north, and never saw an AWD vehicle in 30 years. There were very few that even existed.

4WD, but not AWD. Seems like only the plows were 4WD- I see more 4WD trucks in the south than I EVER saw in the north.

Everyone had studded snow tires and chains, and most people experienced sliding into a curb a couple times in their life, but no AWD.

Most people I knew found themselves an empty parking lot at the first snowfall and practiced a bit. Fun!

Brust
Brust Reader
7/11/09 12:48 p.m.
Dpvog wrote: This is both his fun car AND his DD.
Osterkraut said: Buy a new Impreza for $5,500 dollars more? Why pay that much more for an AWD Camry?

That essentially removes the standard impreza from the running right there. If your point is he should have a reliable, responsible car, I'd agree. If your point is that he can have a reliable, responsible, FUN car, then I'd disagree. That is, unless he's going to rallycross his brand-new impreza. I don't see that happening. If he's going to spend the extra $5500 he might as well go STI shopping. In my opinion, due to the drivetrain's beefier construction, it's probably at least as good a bet and likely better used than a standard wrx. Transmissions apparently are pretty stout compared to the WRX.

neon4891
neon4891 SuperDork
7/11/09 2:41 p.m.

I'm not saying that I need AWD for the snow, but rather just not RWD in the snow. I get by perfectly fine with FWD and my studded snow tires. For the pure performance aspect, I want to go beyond FWD.

Maybe I just need to travel to where I can find an affordable Miata and have that as a secondary car.

MrJoshua
MrJoshua SuperDork
7/11/09 2:46 p.m.

Buy the WRX, tune, free flow exhaust, upgrade suspension-giggle every time you press the gas! It will be a car you remember for the rest of your life. Never happen in NA impreza.

grinch77
grinch77 Reader
7/11/09 4:25 p.m.

Well I spoke to soon spun a bearing this morning

Osterkraut
Osterkraut Dork
7/11/09 4:31 p.m.
Dpvog wrote: In reply to Osterkraut: Hmmm, let's see now: Warranty, broader torque band, (ie, more and earlier low end power) 104k fewer miles, seven years newer, no Stig wannabe has ever driven it before, no repairs to all the things that can break after 104k miles. Remember, this is not just a toy. This is both his fun car AND his DD. He maybe, possibly can't afford car payments along with transmission replacements, new struts, window regulators, tires, cv joints, timing belt, and all the other things that die on a seven year old car with 104k miles. And a new Impreza is simply and purely better in many ways (and in some ways, actually more fun) than a beat to $@&^#* seven year old WRX .-Doug
Osterkraut said: Buy a new Impreza for $5,500 dollars more? Why pay that much more for an AWD Camry?

You must have a really warped sense of fun, and/or maybe haven't driven enough WRXs and their 2.5L NA brothers...

In fact, I've never looked at a 2.5RS or 2.5i or whatever they're calling them now and then looked at my WRX and said, "man, I'd trade 100 hp for a flatter torque curve." My WRX, which had less than 30k on it and was completely stock when I purchased it 6 months ago for $11,000. That wasn't even a good deal. A 100k WRX is worth more like $8,000 dollars. Even at $10k, a $5k jump represents a 1/3 increase in the price of the car! That's like saying why buy a regular Corvette, when you could get the Z06, if the Z06 was slower and uglier.

And $5k can buy a lot of new transmissions and engines. What if he wouldn't have to make payments on $10k (or didn't want to make payments on a 30% increase in price)?

Dpvog
Dpvog New Reader
7/11/09 4:32 p.m.

In reply to Brust: A brand new Impreza will survive rallycross better than a possibly clapped out seven year old 104k mile WRX, especially after a few carefully chosen modifications on the new car. If he would rallycross or autocross his seven year old, 104k mile WRX that he just dropped 10k on, why not a new Impreza (with a few carefully selected skid plates) that cost 15.5k and is likely to STAND UP to the heavy treatment much better? Don't forget what a beating struts, wheel bearings, CV joints, tires, and generally everything under the car takes with rallycross. For Pete's sake, help me keep the kid out of trouble! -Doug

Dpvog
Dpvog New Reader
7/11/09 4:47 p.m.

In reply to Osterkraut:

NOW we're to the crux of the matter. Osterkraut bought a WRX six months ago with under 30k miles for $11k, which he says "wasn't even a good deal." What Neon is considering is buying a WRX with 104k miles for $10K. Osterkraut says he should pay more like 8K for the car. By that reasoning, even if Neon got the $8k price that Osterkraut says he should aim for, the more than 74k extra miles is worth only $3K in savings. In fact, 74k miles is probably half of the anticipated life of the car. Worse yet, its the best half, with the fewest repairs, and the most enjoyable driving experience. Neon just sold the 74k newest and best miles of driving in his "new" car to a complete stranger for $3,000. Now that's a smart move! Since it's such a good idea, Osterkraut, let me rent your WRX. I'll give it back to you next year with 104k miles on it, and I'll pay you $4k! That's better than the deal you're telling Neon to make. -Doug

Osterkraut said:

My WRX, which had less than 30k on it and was completely stock when I purchased it 6 months ago for $11,000. That wasn't even a good deal. A 100k WRX is worth more like $8,000 dollars.

Osterkraut
Osterkraut Dork
7/11/09 4:57 p.m.
Dpvog wrote: In reply to Osterkraut: My WRX, which had less than 30k on it and was completely stock when I purchased it 6 months ago for $11,000. That wasn't even a good deal. A 100k WRX is worth more like $8,000 dollars. NOW we're to the crux of the matter. Osterkraut bought a WRX six months ago with under 30k miles for $11k, which he says "wasn't even a good deal." What Neon is considering is buying a WRX with 104k miles for $10K. Osterkraut says he should pay more like 8K for the car. By that reasoning, even if Neon got the $8k price that Osterkraut says he should aim for, the more than 74k extra miles is worth only $3K in savings. In fact, 74k miles is probably half of the anticipated life of the car. Worse yet, its the best half, with the fewest repairs, and the most enjoyable driving experience. Neon just sold the 74k newest and best miles of driving in his "new" car to a complete stranger for $3,000. Now that's a smart move! Since it's such a good idea, Osterkraut, let me rent your WRX. I'll give it back to you next year with 104k miles on it, and I'll pay you $4k! That's better than the deal you're telling Neon to make. -Doug

No, but you could have bought it from me for $11,000, put 74 thousand miles on it, and if it was in similar shape that when I left it, sans mileage, I would have purchased it back from you for $8000! If you abused it, well, that's what a pre-purchase inspection helps discover.

Plus, my extra $4k would pay for an STi swap in the unlikely event things go south.

A 100k Subie is more than likely good for another 100k, especially if it was well treated. Mileage and the "WRX" badge don't translate to a beaten, abused car.

Tacking on 1/3rd the cost of a purchase on an assumption that a used car isn't reliable is a huge leap.

Would I buy the WRX the OP is looking at? No. That's too much for that car, and there are WAY too many WRXs rolling around for me to buy one that lived in the north. Would I buy a 100k WRX and be confident of at least 50k (5ish years) of reliable service? Well, till I found my gem, I was prepared to.

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