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Old 06-29-2018, 12:16 AM   #1
SGIrix
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Default Traded in 2018 WRX for 2018 base STI: first impressions

Dealer was very reasonable, swap worked out very well--there is a backstory here but it doesnt matter.

So returned a premium WRX and got a base STI with Recaros and performance exhaust. Lapis blue.


After 2400 miles in the WRX and 150 miles in the STI it is obvious that the reviews saying that you should buy the WRX and not the STI WERE VERY WRONG..

The STI is actually much easier to shift smoothly, the shifter doesnt wobble around like in the WRX, it has more torque in 2nd gear, steering is much more solid and the suspension isnt overly harsh compared to the WRX.

In the WRX I had a hard time going up garage ramps in second gear, I had the feeling the engine was about to stall. Not so in the STI.

And overall there isnt any of the flimsiness/tin can feel of the WRX.

It's actually easier to commute in than the WRX--not at all torture many sites were claiming in stop and go traffic.

The only problem I have is the exhaust drone on the freeway... I talked to Invidia cust service and they're saying that the Invidia Q300 doesnt drone at all under 3000 rpm... Anybody can confirm?
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Old 06-29-2018, 07:33 AM   #2
curiousfish
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nice review. STi definitely a better car overall.
If you think the FA20 is bad going up garage ramps in 2nd, the USDM EJ205 is even worst, 1st gear is the answer. haha
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Old 06-29-2018, 09:01 AM   #3
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I'm glad you found a car that fits you.

I am having trouble understanding why you're trying to go up ramps in 2nd and drawing attention to this. It's sort of like saying "When I drive into a lake, I can get out of the STi 6 second faster than I could in the WRX". Well, that's all fine and good, but why the hell would you be doing that in the first place?
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Old 06-29-2018, 09:06 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack View Post
I am having trouble understanding why you're trying to go up ramps in 2nd and drawing attention to this. It's sort of like saying "When I drive into a lake, I can get out of the STi 6 second faster than I could in the WRX". Well, that's all fine and good, but why the hell would you be doing that in the first place?
Car salesman: *slaps roof* This baby can get up so many ramps.
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Old 06-29-2018, 09:08 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack View Post
I'm glad you found a car that fits you.

I am having trouble understanding why you're trying to go up ramps in 2nd and drawing attention to this. It's sort of like saying "When I drive into a lake, I can get out of the STi 6 second faster than I could in the WRX". Well, that's all fine and good, but why the hell would you be doing that in the first place?
He's just trying to rationalize his decision

This is the first time I've heard the STI suspension being described as more livable than the WRX as well

Of course I'm biased
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Old 06-29-2018, 09:11 AM   #6
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I think he meant the suspension, compared to the WRX's softer ride, isn't as bad as he thought it would be.
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Old 06-29-2018, 09:28 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by standardtranny View Post
He's just trying to rationalize his decision
he actually made a decision to get a WRX first.
So it kind of sounds like he drove both of them long enough beyond 'test drive feel' to make a real assessment.
At the end of the day it won't make a difference in the proportions of the 'which is better' debate.
One more hash mark on the STI side and one less on the WRX side out of thousands doesn't really matter.
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Old 06-29-2018, 09:28 AM   #8
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Dealer: "Trouble going up ramps? Let's get in into a properly fast sports car then. 305HP and AWD goodness."
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Old 06-29-2018, 09:29 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Obviously Tyler View Post
Car salesman: *slaps roof* This baby can get up so many ramps.


Yea, unless your garage ramp is 1 mile, why would you be going up in 2nd gear
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Old 06-29-2018, 10:19 AM   #10
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Why would I drive in 2nd gear up a garage ramp? In all cars I had before (non-turbo) you only use 1st gear to get going. Going up a steep slope: always use 2nd gear.

But anyway, I understand now.
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Old 06-29-2018, 10:21 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Obviously Tyler View Post
I think he meant the suspension, compared to the WRX's softer ride, isn't as bad as he thought it would be.
Yep. Exactly. All these reviews are just nonsense.
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Old 06-29-2018, 11:08 AM   #12
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I'd be in 2nd in garages too, you can practically come to a stop in 2nd.
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Old 06-29-2018, 11:32 AM   #13
Andresv374
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SGIrix View Post
Dealer was very reasonable, swap worked out very well--there is a backstory here but it doesnt matter.

So returned a premium WRX and got a base STI with Recaros and performance exhaust. Lapis blue.


After 2400 miles in the WRX and 150 miles in the STI it is obvious that the reviews saying that you should buy the WRX and not the STI WERE VERY WRONG..

The STI is actually much easier to shift smoothly, the shifter doesnt wobble around like in the WRX, it has more torque in 2nd gear, steering is much more solid and the suspension isnt overly harsh compared to the WRX.

In the WRX I had a hard time going up garage ramps in second gear, I had the feeling the engine was about to stall. Not so in the STI.

And overall there isnt any of the flimsiness/tin can feel of the WRX.

It's actually easier to commute in than the WRX--not at all torture many sites were claiming in stop and go traffic.

The only problem I have is the exhaust drone on the freeway... I talked to Invidia cust service and they're saying that the Invidia Q300 doesnt drone at all under 3000 rpm... Anybody can confirm?
I went from a 2015 WRX to a 2018 STi and agree with every one of your statements lol. Don't regret my decision one bit.
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Old 06-29-2018, 11:44 AM   #14
SGIrix
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack View Post
I'm glad you found a car that fits you.

I am having trouble understanding why you're trying to go up ramps in 2nd and drawing attention to this. It's sort of like saying "When I drive into a lake, I can get out of the STi 6 second faster than I could in the WRX". Well, that's all fine and good, but why the hell would you be doing that in the first place?
In the cars I owned before--Renault, Opel, Mazda, 1st gear was strictly for getting the car going. Not for anything else.

On steep slopes (up or down, you should always use the same gear): 2nd gear. Always.

Wait: does this mean that when going down a steep road in the mountains you should use 1st gear in an WRX/STI?
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Old 06-29-2018, 01:44 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SGIrix View Post

The only problem I have is the exhaust drone on the freeway... I talked to Invidia cust service and they're saying that the Invidia Q300 doesnt drone at all under 3000 rpm... Anybody can confirm?
I can confirm, the Q300 does not drone on the highway.

It does not drone in city traffic.
It does not drone up garage ramps in second gear.
It does not drone at WOT.
Sweet exhaust music is all you'll hear.

This message brought to you by Dr. Seuss.
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Old 06-29-2018, 02:57 PM   #16
SGIrix
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gallo2011 View Post
I can confirm, the Q300 does not drone on the highway.

It does not drone in city traffic.
It does not drone up garage ramps in second gear.
It does not drone at WOT.
Sweet exhaust music is all you'll hear.

This message brought to you by Dr. Seuss.
Dumb joke or serious? Hard to tell.
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Old 06-29-2018, 02:58 PM   #17
vlad11591
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He's probably being serious. The Q300 is known to be one of the "quieter" exhausts.
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Old 06-29-2018, 03:04 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by SGIrix View Post
Dumb joke or serious? Hard to tell.
Both.
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Old 06-29-2018, 04:08 PM   #19
joesstripclub
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SGIrix View Post
Why would I drive in 2nd gear up a garage ramp? In all cars I had before (non-turbo) you only use 1st gear to get going. Going up a steep slope: always use 2nd gear.

But anyway, I understand now.
This for sure. I have a 350z that I can cruise around town at 40 mph in 6th gear and it has enough torque to at least increase speed. I'm pretty sure the wrx would just bog down and take a nap. I park in a parking garage at work: definitely use 2nd gear sometimes 3rd in the garage. There have been many times where I have rolled through a yield sign in the wrx and tried to accelerate in 2nd gear only for the car to fall flat on its face. A bigger, more torquey motor or bigger gear would be really helpful in this car for daily driving, so I can totally understand OP's statement.
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Old 06-29-2018, 04:23 PM   #20
BobaToo
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Park in large multi-level garage very often. Every 180 degree bend has a speed bump right in the center of the bend. Second gear gets way too luggy going up with the FA. Down is different.
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Old 07-01-2018, 01:58 PM   #21
Wisco
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I actually use second as well for parking garages in the STI. Kept the exhaust quiet and I found it to drive more nicely than first.
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Old 07-02-2018, 01:30 PM   #22
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There does seem to be some significant difference between WRX 1st and 2nd gear so 8-9mph is kind of in a grey area. 1st is jerky and 2nd is lugging the engine to accelerate, esp on inclines
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Old 07-02-2018, 06:33 PM   #23
SGIrix
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Originally Posted by myrt1987 View Post
There does seem to be some significant difference between WRX 1st and 2nd gear so 8-9mph is kind of in a grey area. 1st is jerky and 2nd is lugging the engine to accelerate, esp on inclines
I talked to a local tuning shop, and he said that you should NOT use 2nd gear when the car is moving slowly, like in parking garages. Use 1st gear, unlike in normal cars. Lugging is harmful to these engines.
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Old 07-02-2018, 07:29 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SGIrix View Post
In the cars I owned before--Renault, Opel, Mazda, 1st gear was strictly for getting the car going. Not for anything else.

On steep slopes (up or down, you should always use the same gear): 2nd gear. Always.

Wait: does this mean that when going down a steep road in the mountains you should use 1st gear in an WRX/STI?
Your gear choice should be based on vehicle speed and the terrain. You can shift to first gear at any speed that won't over-rev the motor. Take auto-x racers for example. If the corner is slow enough that the car will bog down on the exit in second, you better believe they are dropping it to first.

As far as steep slopes go, there are too many variables to say you should always be in a certain gear. For downhills, use the gear that will allow you to maintain a constant speed without excessive use of your brakes. For uphills, use the gear that will allow you to maintain a constant speed without excessive engine load / % throttle.

IMO, rules like "only use first gear to get moving" or "only use 2nd gear on steep slopes" are only good when teaching someone to drive stick. It gives them one less thing to think about / get overwhelmed by.
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Old 07-03-2018, 06:07 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SGIrix View Post
I talked to a local tuning shop, and he said that you should NOT use 2nd gear when the car is moving slowly, like in parking garages. Use 1st gear, unlike in normal cars. Lugging is harmful to these engines.
well case closed then, a local tuner said so.

you should ask him what's the best oil and how long to warm up a car for also so we can have definitive answers on those too.
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