New to the WRX. What to know? (2004 WRX)
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This is a discussion on New to the WRX. What to know? (2004 WRX) within the New Member Hangout forums, part of the Community - Meet other Enthusiasts category; Hey guys. I work at a Nissan Dealership and I've been driving a (heap of a) 98 Altima for the ...

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    Registered User kempobmx1's Avatar
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    New to the WRX. What to know? (2004 WRX)

    Hey guys. I work at a Nissan Dealership and I've been driving a (heap of a) 98 Altima for the last 2 years. As I've been working at the dealership (driving things like the NISMO Z and GTR) I decided I wanted to buy a NISMO Z. Sadly my Altima is ready to go and I can't have my only car be a 2-seat, RWD, summer sports car. For that reason I needed something fun and affordable that can perform, that I can use as a practical car/tuner/snow and dirt drifter. I've always been a WRX fan so I quickly opted for the WRX.

    Now enough with the intro.

    My WRX will be arriving at my dealership from another state in a week, at which point I just have to do some paperwork and I can bring it home. It's a WR Blue, '04 WRX w/ Premium Pkg. What I'm wanting to know is if there are any particular things I should know going into this (please don't bother with reasons I should have bought another year...an 04 is what I have and it's what I'm sticking with).

    For example: I read on Wikipedia that from '02 onward, the car does something to prevent clutch-drop for launching. Is this true? If so, is it mechanical or electronically controlled?

    Next, does anyone know what the car is electronically limited at, as far as speed is concerned? Either way my dealership's GTR Tech can flash my chip, but I just want to know to see if I should flash it right away or if I can deal with waiting.

    Any help or advise will be appreciated. Also if anyone has any recommendations on minor upgrades under $300, that would be helpful too. Thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kempobmx1 View Post
    For example: I read on Wikipedia that from '02 onward, the car does something to prevent clutch-drop for launching. Is this true?
    Somewhat. There is a valve fitted to avoid full shock transfer to the driveline. This doesn't prevent clutch drops, it just does a bit to avoid the negative consequences up to a point.

    If so, is it mechanical or electronically controlled?
    It's a defined orifice in a hydraulic system. It's a delay valve.

    Next, does anyone know what the car is electronically limited at, as far as speed is concerned?
    Cars with a manual gearbox are limited by aerodynamics and a long top gear.
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    So there's not any electronic limitation? I understood that there was a 110mph speed limitation programmed into the ECU. It will be a while before I even break 100 since MA Staties are notoriously tricky, but I'm just curious.

    Also, I keep on seeing references to stages (i.e. '04 WRX Stage 2). What does that mean?

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    My 04 rex(also with the premium package) pushed 140 on a very long straight stretch of road. Then again that was 140 on the speedo...who knows how far off that thing reads at those speeds. oh that was cobb stage 2 btw
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    Quote Originally Posted by kempobmx1 View Post
    So there's not any electronic limitation?
    Not if there is a standard gearbox.

    Also, I keep on seeing references to stages (i.e. '04 WRX Stage 2). What does that mean?
    They refer to sets of parts that have been modified together. For your car a "2" would usually mean someone has changed the up pipe, down pipe, and ECU mapping.
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    Yes it's a standard.

    Is there anywhere you know of where I can find a little more info on stages?

    Finally, do you know the top speed on an 04 WRX? This is purely out of curiosity, as I'm sure I'll never be able to test it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kempobmx1 View Post
    Yes it's a standard.

    Is there anywhere you know of where I can find a little more info on stages?

    Finally, do you know the top speed on an 04 WRX? This is purely out of curiosity, as I'm sure I'll never be able to test it.
    about 135 on a 100% stock 04wrx.

    check cobbtuning.com for their stages.

    "Stage" is a completely generalized term that can be defined differently by different companies.

    For instance, a "Stage 1" clutch is for a pretty high horsepower engine, and you don't need one for a Cobb "Stage 1" off the shelf tune.
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    Thanks for the info. I bookmarked that page for future reference.

    Do you happen to know roughly what bhp I can expect on my WRX? I know that crank numbers usually prove irrelevant and it's certainly not worth my money to take a stock WRX to a dyno.

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    Roughly 160 HP at the wheels.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kempobmx1 View Post
    Thanks for the info. I bookmarked that page for future reference.

    Do you happen to know roughly what bhp I can expect on my WRX? I know that crank numbers usually prove irrelevant and it's certainly not worth my money to take a stock WRX to a dyno.
    There's no such thing as "bhp" anymore... bhp refers to "Brake Horsepower"... the method using a "De Prony Brake" to calculate horsepower.

    In the United states we measure "SAE HP" which is measured at the flywheel.

    EHP / WHP is "Effective horsepower / wheel horsepower." This is the horsepower calculated after the drivetrain and tire friction losses via a "Dynamometer"

    Problem with WHP is the lack of standardization from dyno to dyno, and also the barometrics, temperatures, correction factors, etc. can change the numbers.
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    Wow. That's a sizable drop from 227. What kind of increase can usually be seen by reprogramming the ECU without any mechanical mods (if any).

    My hope was to be over 180bhp, so it would be nice to be able to do a relatively small and inexpensive modification to get it there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kempobmx1 View Post
    Wow. That's a sizable drop from 227. What kind of increase can usually be seen by reprogramming the ECU without any mechanical mods (if any).

    My hope was to be over 180bhp, so it would be nice to be able to do a relatively small and inexpensive modification to get it there.
    ^^^ (WHP not BHP)
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    Haha, sorry. I was typing that last post when you posted regarding WHP vs BHP. I've always wondered what the difference was and now I know. Thanks.

    Now for the question. Is it possible to push 185whp (ish) without mechanical modification?

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    Cobb tuning quotes their stage 1 map on a stock WRX puts out 260hp/260tq. So you might be able to put down over 180whp on a dyno, but I don't know for sure.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kempobmx1 View Post
    Haha, sorry. I was typing that last post when you posted regarding WHP vs BHP. I've always wondered what the difference was and now I know. Thanks.

    Now for the question. Is it possible to push 185whp (ish) without mechanical modification?
    it depends on the dyno (look at the post about wheel horsepower). You can possibly get 185whp on a dynojet or dynopack dynamometer in completely stock form.

    What you really should care about is how the car feels....

    Think about getting an up pipe, downpipe and a protune. It's enough that it'll give you one hell of a kick in your pants, but it's not going to ruin reliability
    Last edited by Sinister; 09-23-2009 at 12:04 AM. Reason: confused posts :D
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