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Old 01-31-2005, 04:56 PM   #1
3DF
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Default So I test drove an 2.5RS yesterday, thinking I'm going to get it, but...

Loved it, I've driven a WRX, don't have the cash for that, but I think the 2.5RS is a good compromise. Anyways, couple questions I had about the car:

- Obviously this would be my first Subaru coming from a '91 Audi 100 (boat) compared to the RS, how long are the RS engines good for or usually last?
- My Fiance is worried about "reliability" and would rather get a Honda and I've been trying my best to convince her that Subbie's are just as reliable, but any other info would be great.
- Crash tests: Is the car safe? I've looked for some info, but was curious if you guys had any other info to check out.
- Turbo Kit: Can the engine handle it without burning it out in case I'd want to upgrade it later on?

I've already got some wheels spec'ed out (Prodrive 7) and the woman approves, but I'd like to make sure I'm making a good purchase.

Noted Invoice on the 2.5RS 4AT - $18,480
Retail price at dealership (sticker) - $19,600
Quote I got in writing from dealership w/ Spoiler + Bug Guard - $18,500 out the door.

So I'm assuming I have a good deal on the RS?

Thanks guys.
-Aaron-
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Old 01-31-2005, 05:04 PM   #2
sonicsuby
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that seems like an ok deal. But you're getting an automatic?

I would steer clear of that and go 5spd. You'll be much happier with it. You could also trying checking out a used WRX to get that RS price with the WRX power
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Old 01-31-2005, 05:05 PM   #3
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In general...

Safety is rated pretty high throughout the Impreza line, a search should turn something up. Reliability is the inverse of turbo kit. Lose the spoiler and go MT...you will thank me later.

Kevin
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Old 01-31-2005, 05:10 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3DF
- Obviously this would be my first Subaru coming from a '91 Audi 100 (boat) compared to the RS, how long are the RS engines good for or usually last?
- My Fiance is worried about "reliability" and would rather get a Honda and I've been trying my best to convince her that Subbie's are just as reliable, but any other info would be great.
- Crash tests: Is the car safe? I've looked for some info, but was curious if you guys had any other info to check out.
- Turbo Kit: Can the engine handle it without burning it out in case I'd want to upgrade it later on?

-A long time... 200k+ or so if well maintained. Something else will be likely cost-prohitbitive before the engine fails.

-subaru's are very reliable, just check out Consumer reports, they get honda/toyota type ratings. I've had 3 subarus, my first was a 1991 legacy with no real problems
-It is a IIHS "best pick, and also gets top-notch gov't ratings, so yes it is safe
-yes, but then it probably won't last "as" long... and it will give you warranty problems as well.
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Old 01-31-2005, 05:10 PM   #5
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Dont get a used WRX unless you know who the previous driver was and if the previous driver didnt do anything to it which is very unlikley. I say get the RS. It is AWD making it much safer already than a Honda. Just tell "the woman" that AWD is safer than 2WD. Reliability wise, it is just as reliable as Honda's or even more so. There is a thread going around, you may have to search, with people getting 100K+ miles with their Subaru's. 18500 is a decent deal. YOu guys dont have tax up there. 50 bucks above invoice is pretty good. If you want turbo later, you can browse the Aftermarket turbo section.

Peter
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Old 01-31-2005, 05:48 PM   #6
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The stock engine shouldn't have a problem seeing 200k miles if well maintained.

A turbo 2.5 would have trouble getting past 40-50k after the turbo was installed. If you want to make it faster, you're looking at a ceiling of 200hp withing reasonable means. That's crank HP, not wheel. Besides that, you're going to start having to invest a lot of cash and streetability.

There is always of course the engine swap. If you can keep the rest of the car in good shape, you can always swap in a turbo engine. Subaru has a large variety of displacements and setups available for between 2.5-4k for the engine and ecu. You'd have to get your own turbo kit and IC and install it (or pay someone to) but you do get a new engine with a new warranty.


As far as safety, you should tell teh old GF that manuals are safer too =]
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Old 01-31-2005, 05:51 PM   #7
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Go for the 5-spd..Seriously..If the fiance' doesnt know how to drive it teach her. You will get better gas mileage, a more reliable transmission and alot more fun.
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Old 01-31-2005, 05:55 PM   #8
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you should be able to get a RS cheaper. check for any incentives that Subaru may be offering. www.edmunds.com

i got my RS for 300 below invoice. dealer made a profit + i was happy. win win

oh i have a 4eat. i regret it somewhat, but it was a necessary choice at the time.
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Old 01-31-2005, 05:58 PM   #9
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Rallitek here in Portland can do a WRX swap into an RS for about $5k. Of course, if you had the $5k for that now, I would say to just get a WRX. Hexk, if you're already thinking about turbo, I'd say wait a little longer, save up a few more bones, and get a WRX right off the bat, lots of potential for that engine, since it's already built for turbo. An RS would need some serious money thrown at the stock engine to get it as powerful and reliable as the stock WRX engine. That's why I'm getting Rallitek to do a swap into my 00 RS sometime later this year.
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Old 01-31-2005, 06:08 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by esper
The stock engine shouldn't have a problem seeing 200k miles if well maintained.

A turbo 2.5 would have trouble getting past 40-50k after the turbo was installed. If you want to make it faster, you're looking at a ceiling of 200hp withing reasonable means. That's crank HP, not wheel. Besides that, you're going to start having to invest a lot of cash and streetability.

There is always of course the engine swap. If you can keep the rest of the car in good shape, you can always swap in a turbo engine. Subaru has a large variety of displacements and setups available for between 2.5-4k for the engine and ecu. You'd have to get your own turbo kit and IC and install it (or pay someone to) but you do get a new engine with a new warranty.


As far as safety, you should tell teh old GF that manuals are safer too =]
Excellent advice here.

If you don't mind a used car, I recommend you look into the previous bodystyle (commonly referred to as the GC8) RS too. Much more stylish and tossable IMHO, and lighter too.
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Old 01-31-2005, 06:15 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3DF
- Crash tests: Is the car safe? I've looked for some info, but was curious if you guys had any other info to check out.
Show your girlfriend this thread:
http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/showthread.php?t=527529

It ought to convince her that Imprezas are pretty safe.
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Old 01-31-2005, 06:21 PM   #12
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the car is very safe, i know the sti has side airbags but other than that the imprezas are real safe.

the car should last forever if you take care of it, my unce had a 86 chevy step side that had 750,000 on the odo when he sold it for 150 dollars lol!! 200k is nothing really...

get the 5speed its much better as far as reliablity goes and gas, fun, cool factor.

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Old 01-31-2005, 06:21 PM   #13
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bug gard is a no no. Get 5spd
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Old 01-31-2005, 06:25 PM   #14
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3DF

I bought my 2.5RS in December and love it! I was able to buy it for $100 below invoice plus $500 cash back. Robert treated me very well from Wentworth Subaru, just email him through the stores website and he will give you a quote via email!

good luck!
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Old 01-31-2005, 06:35 PM   #15
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if you are going to get a turbo, i say ignore these people and dont buy a wrx. the forester xt is this best value. and the legacy gt is HAwT. haha

turbo kit on RS =bad idea.

5 star crash test ratings on imprezas.
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Old 01-31-2005, 06:38 PM   #16
3DF
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2005RBP2.5RS
3DF

I bought my 2.5RS in December and love it! I was able to buy it for $100 below invoice plus $500 cash back. Robert treated me very well from Wentworth Subaru, just email him through the stores website and he will give you a quote via email!

good luck!
Wow, thanks for the good words! Can I say who refered me just for Robs sake.

Thanks for all the input guys. The whole thing with the 5spd, I'd like to..... but..... I've driven an Auto my whole life as well as my fiance so it's best sticking with what works. I know I'm gonna take crap for it but hey, that's what options are for.
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Old 01-31-2005, 06:39 PM   #17
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Yeah, don't get a bug guard, just wash your car once in a while. Also, don't get an auto, you'll kick yourself for it later, unless you don't plan on doing any sort of aggressive driving.
As far as safety and reliability, a woman crashed into my door on my mom's outback going 40+ (t-bone) and I came out unscathed. Also, we've had tons of subies, our last with over 220K when we traded it in.
I got my wrx for 14K+8K trade, so you might want to look around a little more. Whatever you decide, make sure it's a subie!
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Old 01-31-2005, 06:45 PM   #18
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the 4eat is just as reliable as the 5spd... some would argue more-so.

the 5 speed does get better milage... but has some quirks.

edit-- the bug guard is only a no-no on the wrx (it has been shown to deflect some air flow from the scoop) otherwise, it shouldn't matter. imo, the bug guard looks cool on a rs... makes em look meaner. :P
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Old 01-31-2005, 06:54 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jejunum
if you are going to get a turbo, i say ignore these people and dont buy a wrx. the forester xt is this best value. and the legacy gt is HAwT. haha
I have a WRX wagon, and one of my good friends has a Forester XT. I am happy with the compact size of my WRX wagon, she needed more room for her large dogs. I find the Impreza looks and handles better. The XT is faster 0-60 and has more power at low RPMs, making it easier to drive around town than the 2.0L-t wrx. Both are great values, so it all comes down to what you want...
BTW, if you are finding the RS doesn't have enough power (do a highway test drive before you buy) than look into getting a used WRX or Forester. It takes way more than 5k to make a RS perform like a WRX... the WRX has better seats, stereo, suspension & more. So maybe you can spend 5k and get a wrx engine & turbo installed, but that doesn't get you the better seats, interior, stereo, suspension and more (spoiler included on wagon).
If it were me, I'd rather spend the extra 75 bucks or so a month to get the WRX now, then to plan on dropping 4-8K in a few years to make your RS as fast as a WRX (voiding the warranty & making the car less reliable).
And there is nothing wrong with the AUTO impreza... stick shifts suck in stop&go traffic and it's better to get an auto then to have your GF fry your tranny in under 10k miles
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Old 01-31-2005, 08:33 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fuzzymemory
BTW, if you are finding the RS doesn't have enough power (do a highway test drive before you buy) than look into getting a used WRX or Forester. It takes way more than 5k to make a RS perform like a WRX...
I guess you're altogether unfamiliar with the performace of RS vs WRX on the autoX circuit, which most closely resembles any ort of high performance driving possible in the real world, so I'll just summarize by saying this statement is a bit innacurate.

Quote:
the WRX has better seats, stereo, suspension & more.
RS seats 02+ are exactly the same seats you get in a WRX, theyre just not colored on the inside. The interior is IDENTICAL minus the shift knob, leather wrapping on the same steering wheel, and the pedals. The only difference in the sound system is the head unit, all speakers are the same.This is not to mention that they'll sell all of this extra stuff to you in the 2.5rs now for 1k more)

And the suspension is exactly the same too. Spring rates only differ because of the cars weight (imo both cars have half as much spring stiffness as they actually need stock anyways, and the weight differential is 110lbs)

The real difference is the engine, but you can get a 2.5rs to run a 0-60 barely slower than a WRX for less than 2 grand anyways, and it will still turn the same (maybe a bit better since it's lighter), and accept all of the same suspension parts. The added cost savings of much less insurance, much less component wear than a turbo (the average engine life is longer on the 2.5 NA), and 87 octane gas will also really make the 2.5 a better value, especially since it seems like you're looking for a daily driver.

If you want the proof of actual performance, in most autocrosses I've been to the stock 2.5rs drivers and the wrx drivers are getting about the same times. Sometimes the 2.5's are beating the wrx's but that really depends on the driver more than the car. I know I managed to consistently beat 2 wrx drivers all year last year with absolutely no mechanical advantage whatsoever, and no difference in the amount of time any of us were driving. With an exhaust, intake, and springs, i can give any stock wrx a run for it's money around a race course, and that whole total is going to run you less than $800 if you shop wisely.


Quote:
So maybe you can spend 5k and get a wrx engine & turbo installed, but that doesn't get you the better seats, interior, stereo, suspension and more (spoiler included on wagon).
Again, the key interior differences are a shift knob and pedals (the steering wheel is the same wheel with different leather, so i wont even count that).

Thats a whopping hundred bucks, 150 if you buy the most expensive ones at the shop. Any $100 head unit is better than either of the stock ones, although I guess the 6 disc changer would be nice.

Quote:
If it were me, I'd rather spend the extra 75 bucks or so a month to get the WRX now, then to plan on dropping 4-8K in a few years to make your RS as fast as a WRX (voiding the warranty & making the car less reliable).
Sounds like someone who has never really driven in an RS with some good work done to it

And my warranty is just fine. an intake and an exhaust and chip don't seem to bother any of the 3 subaru dealerships i've been to for warranty work. I got my entire engine rebuilt under warranty just to check for piston slap (turns out i had a rare timing problem, fixed for free), and I had a chip, intake and exhaust installed.

It's not going to run you 7-8k $ to make it run a race course faster than a WRX. it will make to make you win a drag race, and for 8k, you could absolutey destroy it since you would at that cost level be driving it with an STi engine in it.

A lot of this is also not taking into account that after 150k of good service from your 2.5 engine, you can still do a swap and basically get a new car for much less money. All you need to do is keep the chassis in good shape, and keep a good suspension in it. This might open the door for having a very nice high speed second car for a third of the price of an STi, and you got 150k wourth of daily driver service out of the same vehicle. And you still spent less than 30 grand for the whole lot. I just think a lot of WRX drivers are unaware of how similar the new era 2.5rs is performance wise to the wrx in every department that's not acceleration, nor how improveable the 2.5rs really is.

Quote:
And there is nothing wrong with the AUTO impreza... stick shifts suck in stop&go traffic and it's better to get an auto then to have your GF fry your tranny in under 10k miles
"yeah, those women, they just cant drive"

There isn't anything wrong with the auto, but the assumption/joke that a woman couldnt learn how to drive a stick in 10k miles is somewhat insulting to women imho.
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Old 01-31-2005, 10:50 PM   #21
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^^ agreed. My 02 RS is awesome! I have spent about 4500 and it will hang with stock wrx's. and my suspension is better than a stock wrx now.
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Old 02-01-2005, 01:05 AM   #22
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How much was the Chip, Intake and Header, and how much HP gain total?
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Old 02-01-2005, 01:35 AM   #23
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Ok nobody posted the crash test info so I will.

http://www.hwysafety.org/vehicle_rat.../html/0126.htm
http://www.hwysafety.org/vehicle_rat...ead_subaru.htm
(top row, of the rear safety test, is for the RS sedan and sport wagon) the RS Sedan Sport package has a WRX like seat now.
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Old 02-01-2005, 01:41 AM   #24
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I don't believe an aftermarket turbo kit is a cheaper alternative to buying a factory turbo car. It will cost you.

And I agree with everyone - a manual will make you much happier with the N/A engine.
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Old 02-01-2005, 03:17 AM   #25
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It might not be cheaper but it would be faster.
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