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This is a discussion on New or used within the Builds forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; I have a stock 05 wrx. I am planning a build that is going to take some time because I ...

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    New or used

    I have a stock 05 wrx. I am planning a build that is going to take some time because I don't just have money flowing out of my a**. I originally thought about modding my current engine but at 120k I really don't want to go any further then exhaust intake and AP, so stage 1. I want to keep the car I have but I want to make the swap to an Sti motor. I know it's is a costly process but that is something I am willing to accept to get what I want. I have done some research and roughly priced new and used Sti motors used are complete but have 60to70k miles on them and the new are well new but are basically just core. Meaning block and internals but no bolt on components. So my question because I have mechanical knowledge and skill but am new to modding cars which direction would be the cheaper route? Go new and buy all new components or go used and completely tear down and start over. I personally feel reliability with new but completely rebuilding a used is basically the same thing so which would be more cost friendly?

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    zax
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    Why would you do all this?

    It's not worth the effort. An STi motor swap will require the harness and ECU and is an incredibly involved process. And all for what? The STi motor (EJ257) isn't a particularly strong motor. Sure, it has a slightly higher power ceiling than the EJ205, but both motors above 350whp will groan and moan.

    Just because the car has 120k miles doesn't necessarily mean it can't be modified. My motor has 106k miles, over 300whp, and still has more than 150 PSI compression in each cylinder. It's all in how the car is maintained. If you're looking for a stout motor, consider a hybrid 2.5L build (2.5L block, forged internals, and EJ205 heads volume matched). Hybrid builds will generally hold around 450-500whp depending on the builder. However, your transmission will not last. If you want the STi motor, buy an STi. If you want big power, don't buy a Subaru at all.
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    Basically take what Zach above said...and heed that advice. It will be the simplest, and cheapest.

    A 2.5L EJ257 block that has been pulled apart and rebuilt is probably your cheapest and best bet. Have your heads machined to match. You avoid the pain in the arse that is swapping the ECU and the entire wiring harness.

    You could even look into crate motors that are built to go with your heads (which should still be properly machined for flow matching) such as the Honey Badger from TiC.
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