Having had the WRX for a little over a week now and having read a number of posts here regarding tuning/adjustment/mods, I have a couple concerns and questions.
My primary concern is that the overall suspension system is too soft, particularly in the front and that there is too much understeer. While I have not taken it too the track (and am still breaking in the motor and getting acquainted with the car over-all) and don't intend to, weekend driving on winding mountain roads proved fun but with room for improvement/more tuned to my preferences. I don't care that much how rough the ride is so long as she's glued to the asphalt and whips corners.
I have seen it recommended a number of times that tires/alignment be addressed before all else. I certainly will be buying higher quality tires--something I am partial to as I understand the importance of high quality rubber. And the OE seem to have a surprisingly soft sidewall. It's been mentioned that the stock alignment is not great, though. What recommendations are made to improve this? More aggressive (positive?) castor? Slightly positive camber? I see the Whiteline ALK gives a +0.5 camber. How is the beneficial to handling vs. added abuse/uneven wear to the tires? With how loose the front end feels, this may be an early mod for me given that reviews and comments I've seen here about the ALK are very positive.
All I can find confirmed (and without crawling around with a tape) is that my WRX has "stabilizer bars" in front and rear. Are these the same size sways as on previous models? 20mmF/17mmR? Has anyone here tested handling/performance responsiveness with stock sways+STB vs larger sways alone?
Anyone have any idea as to the OE spring rates?
I have not noticed much said about under-body stiffening braces; are they worth the money early on in modding? Or at all?
All I've seen for alignment adjustments is camber bolts but not actually any plates. Are there any specific to this model year or can I get away with OE top hats and camber bolts?