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Old 06-12-2005, 06:18 AM   #8
Patrick Olsen
NASIOC Supporter
Member#: 120
Join Date: Jul 1999
Chapter/Region: AKIC
Location: Where the Navy sends me...
1997 Legacy 2.5GT
1996 Impreza coupe


Scott (and daughter),

To be honest, I haven't done much cosmetic stuff to my car because (1) there's not much out there, and (2) I'm more a performance kinda guy. Probably the biggest purely cosmetic thing I've done was a set of Ganador mirrors, which I got off Ebay. You can see a picture of them here:
I've seen other sets on Ebay since, but they're not cheap - I think they were around $250-300 shipped - and to be perfectly honest the driver side mirror is pretty much worthless. You can't adjust it out far enough, so I'm pretty much looking at the side of the car and nothing else. So, not something I'd want my 16-y.o. daughter to have on her car! Oh, and I just got lucky that they happened to have silver, if they had been selling another color the cost would have been even higher since I would have had to paint them.

There's simple stuff like shift knobs (any knob advertised to fit the Impreza/WRX/STi knob will fit), painting the front Subaru badge (I'm sure you could find "how to" threads on here or elsewhere, it's not something I've ever really looked into doing), the "JDM" side marker lights (such as these on Ebay - again, I'm sure you could find "how to" articles that show how easy or difficult they would be to install), etc. One good resource to look at is - and don't just look in the Legacy section, since most people out there are modifying Imprezas but the parts are often common. For instance, I'm pretty sure the Impreza 2.5RS and Legacy 2.5GT shift knobs, shift boots, and steering wheel are identical, but the RS had black with red stitching for a bit more "sporty" look. Shouldn't be too hard to find a car to salvage those from.

As an aside, I'm not terribly impressed by the MOMO wheel in my sister's WRX - I think the leather is harder and cheaper feeling than my stock 2.5GT wheel. It could just be that mine is more "worn in", but I don't think that's it. I think the Legacy wheel is grippy and comfortable, even if it doesn't have a pimpy MOMO logo on it.

Another thing people talk about quite a bit are the JDM headlights, foglights, and taillights. The general consensus is that the JDM foglights just don't fit the USDM bumper, so I've given up on those. I'm still debating a set of JDM projector headlights, and there are a couple up on Ebay right now - here and here. The first set ends in just over a day and thus far the bidding is pretty low. The taillights seem pretty hard to come by, as you really need to have all 3 pieces (the two corner pieces, plus the part across the middle of the trunk) - it seems like the wagon ones pop up pretty frequently, but not the sedan ones. (The reason you need all 3 pieces is that they're tinted darker, so just the corners or just the center section would look kind of stupid).

If your daughter is interested in improving the performance of the car at all, there are inexpensive things to do like a Kartboy shifter (assuming it's a 5-speed) or a larger rear sway bar (18mm from an Outback will make a noticeable improvement in the balance of the car, yet won't get her into any trouble with the car trying to swap ends).

BG? BE?? versions??
If it's a sedan, it's a BD, if it's a wagon, it's a BG - so, you tell us, is it a BD or a BG? Is the car a 5-speed or an auto (I'm guessing the latter, unless you're blessed with the coolest wife and 16-y.o. daughter in the world, both of whom can drive a manual! ).

Pat Olsen
'97 Legacy 2.5GT sedan
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