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Old 04-16-2008, 10:59 PM   #1
Red Rexx
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Question What are the differences between the 2002 WRX and the 2003 WRX?

Hey all...

I am curious to know the differences between the 2002 and 2003 WRX. Can you guys enlighten me? I cannot find a definite answer in searching. I am mainly concerned with their mechanical differences, but any info on their cosmetic differences would be nice to .

Thanks everyone!

PS - The 2002 model was the first WRX released in the United States correct?
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Old 04-16-2008, 11:08 PM   #2
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- 02 was the first year
- 03 has a lighted ring around the ignition
- 02 had identical F/R sways. They made the rear weaker in 03
- 02 had a lighter flywheel. They made this heavier in 03 to get rid of transmission lash
- both had crappy paint

That is all I can think of off the top of my head.

- dow
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Old 04-16-2008, 11:33 PM   #3
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So the 02 is more beneficial over the 03 then mechanically?
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Old 04-16-2008, 11:41 PM   #4
jason miller
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At some point in '03 they started putting wider gears in the transmission...
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Old 04-16-2008, 11:41 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Red Rexx View Post
So the 02 is more beneficial over the 03 then mechanically?
The late 02s maybe. Depends on who you ask. I would prefer the late 02 (like mine ) over an 03.

The early 02 had the "narrower" gears.

Last edited by Wrx_Fan_0717; 04-16-2008 at 11:50 PM.
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Old 04-16-2008, 11:49 PM   #6
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Some say the 03's had a stronger tranny. I dunno, mine's been okay, but I don't shock load it. Also, there are minor changes in brakes pads and such, but not that one's "better", I think it was just what Subaru had lying around when they built it. There's a number of minor differences... to add contrast to the above... I'd take an 02 over an 03. :^D
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Old 04-16-2008, 11:50 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jason miller View Post
At some point in '03 they started putting wider gears in the transmission...
The RA width started in 02. If you build date is after March or April of 02 you have the wider gears.



Quote:
Originally Posted by vader wagon View Post
Some say the 03's had a stronger tranny. I dunno, mine's been okay, but I don't shock load it. Also, there are minor changes in brakes pads and such, but not that one's "better", I think it was just what Subaru had lying around when they built it. There's a number of minor differences... to add contrast to the above... I'd take an 02 over an 03. :^D
Read above post. But, i like you lit key ring
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Old 04-16-2008, 11:53 PM   #8
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If your transmission code is TY754VN2AA you have the narrow gears. If you have transmission code TY754VN2BA you have the wider gears.
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Old 04-17-2008, 12:37 AM   #9
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I have first year WRX also and has been trouble free. Transmission is holding up very well at 280+ whp level for over 2 years. It all depends on how you drive your car.
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Old 04-17-2008, 12:59 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by txl146 View Post
I have first year WRX also and has been trouble free. Transmission is holding up very well at 280+ whp level for over 2 years. It all depends on how you drive your car.
Agreed i am at 350 wheel and stock tranny/clutch has been holding up for over 6 months. (300+ before that).

This is with repeated flat foot shift and WOT pulls daily.
Learn how to drive (reduce shockload) and save some money. Although i am finally getting LGT 1-5s with a front lsd here soon.
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Old 04-17-2008, 01:20 AM   #11
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Interesting...

Any more differences?
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Old 04-17-2008, 01:23 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Red Rexx View Post
Interesting...

Any more differences?
I think thats about it?
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Old 04-17-2008, 01:59 AM   #13
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So the only big thing is slightly stronger gears huh?
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Old 04-17-2008, 02:01 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Red Rexx View Post
So the only big thing is slightly stronger gears huh?
Quote:
Originally Posted by dowroa View Post
- 02 was the first year
- 03 has a lighted ring around the ignition
- 02 had identical F/R sways. They made the rear weaker in 03
- 02 had a lighter flywheel. They made this heavier in 03 to get rid of transmission lash
- both had crappy paint

That is all I can think of off the top of my head.

- dow
I think he got it right.
Late (Mar) 02 and most all 03 has the RA width gears.
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Old 04-17-2008, 07:21 AM   #15
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I don't know exactly, but isn't there something about the brake ducts thats on the '02 and not the '03?
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Old 04-17-2008, 07:35 AM   #16
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Yea but they didn't even do anything.

Naa your right the brake ducts got removed.
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Old 04-17-2008, 08:09 AM   #17
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www.cars101.com has the differences.
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Old 04-17-2008, 08:44 AM   #18
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03's got rid of the painted thermostat resevoir. the 02's had problems with paint chipping off and circulating into the radiator core, possibly clogging it.
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Old 04-17-2008, 08:57 AM   #19
5spdfrk
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03s also added the extra cap on the radiator in addition to the one on the reservoir.
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Old 04-17-2008, 09:08 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unabomber View Post
www.cars101.com has the differences.
Ding!

Quote:
2003: very few changes. TS gets cruise control, RS and Outback get keyless entry and dual vanity mirrors, RS gets trunk light, WRX gets illuminated ignition key ring and new limited production Sonic Yellow in both sedan and wagon, but the yellow sedan is only available with the rear spoiler and has a separate model code. App 1,500 yellow WRXs will be made. Also a hitch is now available on the WRX wagon.
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Old 04-17-2008, 09:38 AM   #21
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'03 was given the anti-dump valve to slow down the clutch.
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Old 04-17-2008, 09:45 AM   #22
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1 year.
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Old 04-17-2008, 10:24 AM   #23
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"02...ugly-ness began...and I love it!!!
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Old 04-17-2008, 12:47 PM   #24
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'02 had pee yellow. '03 had mustard yellow
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Old 04-17-2008, 01:14 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrx_Fan_0717 View Post
I think he got it right.
Late (Mar) 02 and most all 03 has the RA width gears.
Stop posting your missinformation. Everyone of your posts in here is wrong.

Only late '03 models had wider gears. March '02 is the production date for a latter build of '03s.
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