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Old 02-22-2009, 02:38 AM   #1
Driveteam
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Default Test Drove 08 STI and 09 WRX tonight.. Need some help deciding

Like the title says, I test drove both of these cars tonight brand new on the Subaru lot. Almost drove away in one..... almost.

I have never owned a WRX or STI but have looked at them for a long time. Really want an AWD turbo car for year round ability, haul kids, bikes, luggage, etc.

I need some help here. As far as I can tell, what we are buying here is really potential more than serious reality. In other words, a car that could be fast after you modify but really isnt that fast yet out of the box. I know that is ultimately true with all turbo cars including the one I have now.

For $25k - I thought the WRX might have more power than it did claiming 265hp. Sort of fast but not really. Not what I would want it to be for too long. It handled OK.

For $32k I thought the STI would really do much more than the WRX. The car was faster but not a lot. It was fun to drive but not amazing - not $32K amazing. It handled well and the shifting was what I liked most about it.

$32k for a car I am going to have to start modding it to get it where a $32K car should be in the first place. After mods we are looking at something near $40k.

Since both cars are starting points - which is the better car to start with? It seems that the 09 WRX surely could be modded to surpass the 08 STI for an extra $7K?

Should I pass on the new ones and get a used STI for a lot less money? Like an 05 possibly? From what I read on the boards - these older cars can be fast. Probably more products and development for the platform - or - the platform is potentially better. I am not experienced enough to know.

Any help? Oh, I have read quite a bit as well.

Thanks for reading if you got this far.
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Last edited by Driveteam; 02-22-2009 at 03:21 AM.
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Old 02-22-2009, 02:41 AM   #2
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Old 02-22-2009, 03:23 AM   #3
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My Bad LOL! Too late at night!

Last edited by Driveteam; 02-22-2009 at 03:30 AM.
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Old 02-22-2009, 07:47 AM   #4
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Just my opinion here... I would choose the 09 WRX for the following

1. Its way cheaper
2. If faster is what you want then that can be had with just a protune and TBE for starters. Some gauges may be in order as well. There is soooo much room to grow in a WRX.
3. And I prefer the sleeper look. A WRX is a little more plain jane to keep the tickets at bay.
4. Insurance rates are probably better too.

Just my thoughts good luck on your purchase.
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Old 02-22-2009, 11:30 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueDoom View Post
Just my opinion here... I would choose the 09 WRX for the following

1. Its way cheaper
2. If faster is what you want then that can be had with just a protune and TBE for starters. Some gauges may be in order as well. There is soooo much room to grow in a WRX.
3. And I prefer the sleeper look. A WRX is a little more plain jane to keep the tickets at bay.
4. Insurance rates are probably better too.

Just my thoughts good luck on your purchase.
1. I agree
2. I also agree. A wrx can easily be made faster then a STI.
3. To each their own
4. They will be cheaper, no noubt. Probably by A LOT.

My problem with this is that you left out the goodies that you are actually paying for in the STI that completely blow the wrx out of the water.

The drivetrain ALONE is worth the extra $7k. A basically, unbreakable 6mt/brembos/stronger hubs/better suspension/r180 rear end. Now you can probably search around and go through the hassle of finding a 6mt swap for the wrx, but

-it wont be new
-you have to find all the parts you might need, its not easy and ask me how i know, twice
-for a complete sti drivetrain swap it will run you about $5k (used)

And that is just the drivetrain. With the STI you get the vf48, dual AVCS, Bigger tmic, STI interior, Some 18 x 8.5" wheels and 245 series tires. thats another ~$3k in NEW goodies you get, in which you would have to find and swap into your wrx if you choose.


to the OP:

here is a good thread on what a TBE and tune (stg. 2) can do for you in both the 09 wrx and the 08 sti ( i know you were looking at 09, but not too much out there on it and i believe not much changed).

http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show...light=2008+sti

With a simple meth setup, you can add another ~20 whp and ~40 wtq for $400. So all in all, to make an 08-09 STI "fast", it will cost you around $1600.

TBE: ~$600
Meth: ~$400
Fuel pump: ~$80
BCS: ~$50
Tune: ~$450

Total: $~$1600

now you can do the same to the wrx and probably be just as "fast", in a straight line . With those power levels on the wrx, you will have to consider one MAJOR thing.

- TRANNY, with that much power, you will need a new one (eventually)

Whatever you choose, in the end it is your choice. How much you want spend, now and in the future (maintenance/fixing broken parts etc...) IMO the wrx stepped up to the plate in 09 and is out there to strongly compete (again) in the midrange area. If you have the means to get the STI, do it. The peace of mind knowing that certain parts are not fragile when you upgrade (which you obviuosly want to do) is priceless.

-Chris
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Old 02-22-2009, 02:27 PM   #6
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I agree with rendog.

Another selling point for the '08 STi is the 0% financing.
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Old 02-22-2009, 04:51 PM   #7
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Thanks guys for the help. Much appreciated. The financing where I am is 0% for 24 months. That is about $1333 per mo. for a car payment.

I see the point on the STI - and between driving the two cars, the drivetrain on the STI really is what made the difference for me - the car did not feel a whole lot faster but sure felt more solid like it could take more aggresive driving. On the test drive the salesman asked me if did much track racing LOL! So, I did see what it could do for a moment or two.

My current car is probably north of 400hp at the crank and would smash on both of these cars in thier stock form. I think I am processing the idea of spending a lot of cash for a slower car. I was hoping at $32 the STI would have been a little more stout.

Any thoughts on skipping the new platform entirely and going with an 04-07 STI with low miles? I know it would be used but would be a whole lot less cash for a well respected platform.
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Old 02-23-2009, 10:37 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Driveteam View Post
Thanks guys for the help. Much appreciated. The financing where I am is 0% for 24 months. That is about $1333 per mo. for a car payment.

I see the point on the STI - and between driving the two cars, the drivetrain on the STI really is what made the difference for me - the car did not feel a whole lot faster but sure felt more solid like it could take more aggresive driving. On the test drive the salesman asked me if did much track racing LOL! So, I did see what it could do for a moment or two.

My current car is probably north of 400hp at the crank and would smash on both of these cars in thier stock form. I think I am processing the idea of spending a lot of cash for a slower car. I was hoping at $32 the STI would have been a little more stout.

Any thoughts on skipping the new platform entirely and going with an 04-07 STI with low miles? I know it would be used but would be a whole lot less cash for a well respected platform.

One comment on the 07+ sti's. I know they have a terrible, terrible stock map on them. I THINK, if i recall correctly, they were hitting close to ~14 afr's at full boost WOT. NOT GOOD! Like i said i believe it started in 07, but you should double check.

04's, watch out fot the bad struts with the clunk in teh rear. it can be fixed, btu probably an annoying problem to have. The 04 also has the weaker hubs, 5x100. in 05 they switched to the 5x114.3.

I can't think of a lot of the differences between the years. Just know what you are getting when it comes to getting the used one. Number of owners, mods done, etc......thats what the decision for the 04-07 will come down to. and looks

on that note if you ever make it out to Cali. i think this might suit your needs. http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show....php?t=1698217

even if you're not close to Cali. you need to fly and come get this. it is the best deal on nasioc right now.
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Old 02-23-2009, 01:25 PM   #9
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Rendog24, thanks for the advice. You are right about the car you suggest for sale. That is amazing. If I were nearer I would jump on that. It is hard to fly out across the country and drive a car back due to time constraints but this one might be able to be shipped since it seems so solid.

I was looking last night for differences in years and what to look out for. From what you are saying the 05 and 06 might be a better way to go.

Any thoughts in comparing these to the 08sti/09wrx platform?
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Old 02-23-2009, 01:34 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Driveteam View Post
Rendog24, thanks for the advice. You are right about the car you suggest for sale. That is amazing. If I were nearer I would jump on that. It is hard to fly out across the country and drive a car back due to time constraints but this one might be able to be shipped since it seems so solid.

I was looking last night for differences in years and what to look out for. From what you are saying the 05 and 06 might be a better way to go.

Any thoughts in comparing these to the 08sti/09wrx platform?
ah one more thing on the 04's. THE TRANNY GRIND IN 4TH AND 5TH. it has shown up in many 6mt's from that year. also in 07 they have the BETTER gearing.

Just the better/bigger turbo of the 08+ sti and larger tmic. bigger/wider wheels/tires. not really too much differences. obviously they changed rear suspensions.

With the 09 wrx, you can use the same argument that was used before with the drivetrain etc. Although i have heard rumors that the 09 wrx turbo is in comparison with the vf43 (07 sti turbo).

it's a tough decision to make. i was on a budget and the wrx appealed to me at the time. the high $ insurance/high $ maintenance/ and end cost of the STI amde the choice easy for me at that time in my life. good luck and let me know if you need anything.

-Chris
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Old 02-23-2009, 06:53 PM   #11
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Before you even consider an 09 you may want to read the following two posts below. Certain 09s are experiencing engine failure (rod bearing failure) due to a reason Subaru will not share with us. I would NOT buy an 09 if you plan on modding or at least wait until the 09 motor failure has been "resolved."

http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show....php?t=1648372

List of every 09 motor failure posted on NASIOC (Check back often, it grows every day, and I could be added any day): http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show....php?t=1695936
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Old 02-25-2009, 12:59 AM   #12
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I asked the dealer about this and they played it down as if they had not even heard about it. When I told them that there were many with this issue they were incredulous. Subaru really needs to solve this.
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Old 02-28-2009, 08:13 PM   #13
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Yeah, the WRX might be the more suitable car for you. It is cheaper, you don't seem to be opposed to modding.

Quote:
It was fun to drive but not amazing - not $32K amazing
Furthermore, the STI is well worth the 32k to those who appreciate the extras, such as sweet transmission, DCCD and other not immediately apparent goodies. You don't seem to drool over those amenities.
If I had the money I'd get the STI, but I am quite happy with my WRX. I am on my second long block btw. But hey, who cares if you have an intact warranty. If you wanna mod right away. The 09 WRX bearing issue seems to be resolved unless you buy an early build...
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Old 03-06-2009, 03:24 AM   #14
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sti hands down....just my $0.02
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Old 03-10-2009, 11:54 AM   #15
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Another $0.02 is go with an older sti the price have dropped out on them and then you will have a lot of money left over to play with
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Old 03-10-2009, 03:52 PM   #16
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I loved the 09 WRX when i drove it. Better every-day driver for me...
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Old 03-17-2009, 08:55 PM   #17
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go with an sti, better heads, and the 6 speed n drivetrain. beware of the 5 speed
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Old 03-19-2009, 07:54 PM   #18
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09 wrx!! Room to grow. I always felt that i would feel better making a wrx out performe a sti
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Old 03-22-2009, 06:49 PM   #19
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I'm in a similar predicament, currently deciding on one as well
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Old 03-24-2009, 02:06 PM   #20
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I have an 09 WRX right now. It currently has 6500 miles on it. It's a fast car, but when I am crusing at 60 mph, there is an annoying humming sound from the drivetrain. I just got a new long block because a rod broke in the original engine. Besides these, to me, it's a very fast car and I'm not all about taking hard corners, so with the WRX's suspensions and drivetrain, I have a good ride for daily driving and the power when needed.
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Old 03-27-2009, 09:56 AM   #21
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I think the amount of debate on both sides of the 09 WRX vs 08 STi would say the are both decent choices, for me it came down to price and what I was realistically going to use the thing for. If you are going to do regular track days I'd do the STi, sometimes when i'm taking tight corners @ high speeds the WRX really does understeer, nothing that can't be fixed for more $$ though.
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Old 03-27-2009, 10:02 AM   #22
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The OP hasn't posted back in this thread since the day he posted it over a month ago. That said, I had an '08 WRX for a year, upgraded the suspension and ran a Perrin Stage 1 reflash on it for most of that time. While I had it I got a chance to autocross an '09.. I wasn't all that impressed with the upgrades. When the incentives hit in December I traded it for an '08 STI. I haven't regretted that decision except for when I look at my MPG gauge.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MY09 View Post
I have an 09 WRX right now. It currently has 6500 miles on it. It's a fast car, but when I am crusing at 60 mph, there is an annoying humming sound from the drivetrain. I just got a new long block because a rod broke in the original engine. Besides these, to me, it's a very fast car and I'm not all about taking hard corners, so with the WRX's suspensions and drivetrain, I have a good ride for daily driving and the power when needed.
Take it to the dealer. The car should be very smooth at speed.

Last edited by Calamity Jesus; 03-27-2009 at 10:15 AM.
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Old 03-27-2009, 10:19 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beaverboy View Post
When the incentives hit in December I traded it for an '08 STI. I haven't regretted that decision except for when I look at my MPG gauge.

Maybe @ dec '10 i'll think about it
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Old 03-27-2009, 11:33 AM   #24
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STi for sure. Rear LSD, 6 speed transmission and the fender flares make it an obvious choice. And of course, more power!
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Old 03-27-2009, 01:00 PM   #25
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06' Sti if you want my opinion, but if you must I think 08' sti, simply bcause w/a protune and tbe you pick up alot of power, you don't need meth as someone stated earlier. The only reason for that is to up the sh!+ out of your boost. Plus the tranny is a big plus and will limit you on the wrx eventually, plus the engine issues w/the 09'.
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