2006 WRX Gauge Cluster in a 2003 WRX?
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This is a discussion on 2006 WRX Gauge Cluster in a 2003 WRX? within the Interior Mods forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; The gauge cluster in my 2003 WRX is looking a little rough, and I came across a 2006 WRX gauge ...

  1. #1
    Registered User SubyWill's Avatar
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    2006 WRX Gauge Cluster in a 2003 WRX?

    The gauge cluster in my 2003 WRX is looking a little rough, and I came across a 2006 WRX gauge cluster for a really good price. I have ProSport gauges in my car now, and they're green, so I kind of want to stick with the green theme. I was wondering if this would be a plug and play thing, or would it be really difficult or even impossible? And how would I be able to get the outside temperature to work? If someone could help me out, I would really appreciate it. Thanks!
    2003 WRB Stage 2+

    Bugeye Mafia Member # 191

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    \_(ツ)_/ Rambo's Avatar
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    It won't be easy. There are significant wiring harness differences between the 02-04 cars and the later years. Impossible? No. Very unfun? Yes.

    There are some writeups on NASIOC about how to do it, but I've got a better option: I have a 2003 WRX cluster in a box in the garage I'd be happy to sell you. It's in 100% working order, I just swapped it out for an STI cluster.

    If you're interested, PM me.
    Isaac -- 2003 WRX sedan Stg II - Gave its life for mine 6/2013.
    2007 Outback 3.0R wagon
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    Registered User SubyWill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rambo View Post
    It won't be easy. There are significant wiring harness differences between the 02-04 cars and the later years. Impossible? No. Very unfun? Yes.

    There are some writeups on NASIOC about how to do it, but I've got a better option: I have a 2003 WRX cluster in a box in the garage I'd be happy to sell you. It's in 100% working order, I just swapped it out for an STI cluster.

    If you're interested, PM me.

    Thanks for the offer! But I kind of want a newer WRX gauge cluster for the red needles and greener lights, they would match my prosport gauges a lot better. But, if I find a 04 WRX gauge cluster, it would basically be plug and play? As opposed to the 05+ ones?
    2003 WRB Stage 2+

    Bugeye Mafia Member # 191

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    Administrator RayfieldsWRX's Avatar
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    You'd almost be better off if you can find an '05 STi cluster. I transplanted that into my 2002 WRX with no issues. Seems like there's one or two wires that have to be accounted for, or something. (been a long time)

    It's much prettier than the '02 cluster..the red gauges, etc.
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  6. #5
    \_(ツ)_/ Rambo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RayfieldsWRX View Post
    You'd almost be better off if you can find an '05 STi cluster. I transplanted that into my 2002 WRX with no issues. Seems like there's one or two wires that have to be accounted for, or something. (been a long time)

    It's much prettier than the '02 cluster..the red gauges, etc.
    Are you sure it was an '05 cluster, Ray? I had an '04 STI cluster, and I just had to clip 2 wires to keep from blowing the stereo circuit. The outside temp gauge wouldn't work, and the rear diff overheat warning was on, but there were fixes for those I just never got around to.

    I seem to remember the '05+ clusters were exponentially harder to deal with, but maybe not.

    I remember seeing the writeups on nasioc and scoobymods.
    Isaac -- 2003 WRX sedan Stg II - Gave its life for mine 6/2013.
    2007 Outback 3.0R wagon
    Proud owner of a N.E.R.D, Member 1.3810-23

    The pursuit of knowledge is hopeless and eternal... Hooray!!! - Professor Farnsworth

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    Administrator RayfieldsWRX's Avatar
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    Oops, I think you're right. Must have been an '04. Senior moment.
    --Ray
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  8. #7
    \_(ツ)_/ Rambo's Avatar
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    Ok, here's the thread on how to put an 05+ STI cluster into a pre-2005 car:
    05 STi cluster into any Pre-05 WRX

    As you can see, it's doable, but kludgy at best, and a bunch of functions won't work properly.

    Here's a writeup on how to get a 2004 STI cluster into an 02-03 WRX:
    2002-2003 Gauge Cluster Swap from STI - NASIOC

    With this, every single gauge function will work with enough hacking, but I drove it for a year with the diff light error and the false outdoor temp readings. Those were minor annoyances, but at least the selectable shift light/buzzer worked fine.

    Sorry this doesn't directly answer your question, OP, but it seems like Subaru changed their harness protocol in 2005. It's up to you to decide how much hacking you want to do, but be aware the you MUST correct the odometer reading to match your real mileage. On Subarus, the mileage reading is stored in non-volatile memory on the cluster itself, so you'll need to hire a service to correct it. I got mine done at Tacoma Speedometer for about $100 including shipping. Just give them a call, and they'll walk you through the process. They update the VIN number records to say the car's odometer was replaced and corrected, so there's no potential for fraud. I never had an issue with vehicle registration after the swap, since the mileage was accurate, and the modification was officially documented.
    Isaac -- 2003 WRX sedan Stg II - Gave its life for mine 6/2013.
    2007 Outback 3.0R wagon
    Proud owner of a N.E.R.D, Member 1.3810-23

    The pursuit of knowledge is hopeless and eternal... Hooray!!! - Professor Farnsworth

  9. #8
    Administrator RayfieldsWRX's Avatar
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    I'm still driving around with the diff light and wrong temp gauge. I have the attention span of a 5-year-old, sometimes.
    --Ray
    Grandfather of the Bugeye Mafia
    2013 Subaru BRZ Limited
    2002 Subaru WRX Bugeyebrid Wagon

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    Registered User SubyWill's Avatar
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    What do you guys think about a 2004 WRX gauge cluster? Would it be a simple swap? I just want red needles with the green backlight
    2003 WRB Stage 2+

    Bugeye Mafia Member # 191

  11. #10
    \_(ツ)_/ Rambo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SubyWill View Post
    What do you guys think about a 2004 WRX gauge cluster? Would it be a simple swap? I just want red needles with the green backlight
    Yup, that should be just like the 2004 STI cluster swap.
    Isaac -- 2003 WRX sedan Stg II - Gave its life for mine 6/2013.
    2007 Outback 3.0R wagon
    Proud owner of a N.E.R.D, Member 1.3810-23

    The pursuit of knowledge is hopeless and eternal... Hooray!!! - Professor Farnsworth

  12. #11
    Registered User SubyWill's Avatar
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    So I could just follow the same instructions to install? Thanks for the help, I appreciate it!
    2003 WRB Stage 2+

    Bugeye Mafia Member # 191

  13. #12
    Registered User SlimJim8804's Avatar
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    Is it "looking rough" because the cluster lens is all swirled up?
    If so, just replace that and voila, new looking gauge cluster.

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