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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
so ive seen many people who are cautious about launching these cars. fair enough, putting a ton of load on your car all the time isnt the best for longevity. however i have not been able to find very much evidence of these cars being any less reliable than other cars. so are people just babying these cars or is there reason for concern beyond what there would be in a fwd or rwd car, other than the simple fact that there is more moving parts=more failure points? and if these cars are prone to drive train failure what are the weak points?
 

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the simple fact that there is more moving parts=more failure points?
Yes there is more that can go wrong on our cars, but overall they are very reliable when compared to other performance cars in this price range, and to me the insanely high resale makes up for the slightly higher repair costs(if you're unlucky or drive it like its stolen). Most drivetrain issues I have experienced were owner error related, mainly from guys launching the car hard regularly which WILL break the car. If in doubt, buy the Subaru Added Security Gold plus plan and then you can drive the crap out of the car without any anxiety.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
i dont drive hard all that often, maybe 1 or 2 good launches a month at most. i drove a 2004 civic si for 11 years and had a lot of fun with that car. i launched it here and there and it was bulletproof. but the more research i do into the wrx the more cautious owners i find and it just seems odd since its a sporty car with a manual.
 

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You're talking about a Torqueless NA Civic I'm assuming (I'm not sure if they had an LSD or not?) vs. a pretty torque filled turbocharged AWD car... It's very basic mechanics when it comes down to it, but it's not usually transmission parts that fail on an STi, it's engine parts.

in early generations, the WRX had a pretty fragile transmission, but the STi has always been very stout in that aspect. I know plenty of people running 500+HP through the stock STi trans.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
it was indeed a torqueless NA civic with an open diff. but cant you engineer a drive train as stout as you want? im just trying to figure out how strong subaru makes theirs in the base wrx.

the sti is a cool car but its just not for me, im not a race car driver i just like to feel a little acceleration once in awhile.
 

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The 2015 is likely a little more durable than the previous 5 speed. Added with the slight gearing advantage it should be alright for daily driving.

The WRX 5 speed had taller gearing so when you hit a hard shift there is way more leverage against the gear teeth and they go snap

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G935A using Tapatalk
 

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it was indeed a torqueless NA civic with an open diff. but cant you engineer a drive train as stout as you want? im just trying to figure out how strong subaru makes theirs in the base wrx.

the sti is a cool car but its just not for me, im not a race car driver i just like to feel a little acceleration once in awhile.

You can, indeed engineer them however strong you want, but you also have to look at the fact that the WRX has never been marketed as a car that's going to take strong launches on well prepped tarmac and not break. The most recent generations are sporty grocery getters, not rally cars or race cars. I'm sure that your car will hold up to some launches, and doubt at stock power you'll ever really kill the transmission, but your clutch won't like it very much.

As far as feeling acceleration goes, get to stage 2 levels and get a tune, and you'll feel plenty, until of course you get used to that power, too, haha.

Congrats on the car, and welcome to the forum.
 

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it was indeed a torqueless NA civic with an open diff. but cant you engineer a drive train as stout as you want? im just trying to figure out how strong subaru makes theirs in the base wrx.

the sti is a cool car but its just not for me, im not a race car driver i just like to feel a little acceleration once in awhile.
You can still accelerate and drive hard, I do it all the time with no issues. Just do it from a roll and you're fine. The problem is when you bring the revs up and dump the clutch. In your civic/mustang etc, that excess power escapes through wheelspin. But with AWD hooked up to sticky tires, all that excess force is put onto the drivetrain. As for the engines having more issues than the drivetrain as ircikchad suggested, personally I have not found this to be the case at all on stock untuned or cobb tuned cars. Etunes blow up a lot of motors IME, but that is what happens when you let a stranger meddle with your ECU, some are better than others. Tunes where folks are shooting for the highest HP possible in general are bound to put strain on the car. Personally I've never seen a stage 1 or 2 cobb tune running 93 octane gas with the 91 octane tune have a motor issue as of yet. I got 120k out of my stage 2 setup driving it like a savage and when I sold it it was running perfectly. In general, these cars are about handling. If you're looking for something to launch in a straight line, get a RWD V8 Muscle car.
 

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Personally I've never seen a stage 1 or 2 cobb tune running 93 octane gas with the 91 octane tune have a motor issue as of yet..
a friend of mine has actually blown up his Cobb Stage 1, otherwise stock, 93 Oct tune car twice, lol... Spun bearing both times.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
yea i really want a camaro but too expensive(and theres those blind spots...). mustangs are a lot more affordable but they dont have enough headroom for me, last weekend i went to a lot and sat in one, my hair was like 1/8th inch from hitting the roof, the wrx has almost 1.5 more inches of headroom so should be good tho i haven't sat in one yet. plus those cars are super high profile, everyone knows what they are and what they do, the wrx is a little more of a sleeper and i like that too.

i rented a camaro ss in texas for a week this year and so many people gave me thumbs up and complimented me on it. super fun for a week but i dunno if i could live with that every day. plus theres the economy side of it, i kinda believe in global warming and so i dont really wanna be seen driving around in a v8 muscle car all that often haha.

i do like a good handling car too that civic si was very good in corners, and i put up with it for 11 years lol.

tbh im not all that worried about this subject, i know how i drive and i know im very unlikely to break a car. i just love to do research and this subject i really didn't come across any data on ever... witch seemed odd to me.
 

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but cant you engineer a drive train as stout as you want?
Sure, you can engineer anything as stout as you want. However, economics and regulations are playing against manufactures in this realm.

Let's take engine conrods as an example:

So you want the OEM engine conrods to handle 500% of OEM BMEP. OK, great. Let's quickly break this down. The first thing you could do is use a stronger alloy like Titanium. But, Titanium is expensive and difficult to machine compared to typical steel and aluminum alloys. That's an easy choice if this is a $70k+ performance car, but this is a $26k sporty car. Clearly Titanium is the wrong choice. Next choice, we could use advanced manufacturing techniques like forging, shot peening, or chemical hardening, or special designs like H-beams, but these processes take additional time and work against the OEM when considering (again) economics and on-time delivery. Again, that's affordable when producing a low-volume and expensive sports car, but not really when it's a high volume and cost conscious like the WRX. That leaves us with one final option -- just use more material. A conrod that's thicker and has more material will undoubtedly be stronger. Seems like a win, but now regulations are playing a big part in this decision. Thicker and heavier conrods will also require more energy to accelerate and reduce the overall fuel efficiency of the engine. Manufacturers now are bound by CAFE regulations that are forcing them to achieve insane average fleet economy ratings.

In the example of the conrods, manufacturers are balancing the economics of manufacturing techniques while reducing the reciprocating mass inside the engine to achieve CAFE targets. Since an OEM only needs to achieve durability at OEM power, it's an obvious choice for an inexpensive sporty car. This concept applies to all parts of the car including the drivetrain. The STI is somewhat exempt because it is very low comparative quantity and thus has little impact on CAFE, but eventually the STI will also succumb to this trend.
 

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Side note: material alloys and manufacturing processes have come a long way in the last 50 years, and will continue to improve over the next 50 years. This means that stronger alloys can be had for cheaper now than 50 years ago and manufactured to a much higher level of durability at a much lower price point.

Some trends to keep a watch out for:
1. Prevalence of carbon-fiber reinforced composites and alloys (CFRCs)
2. GenIV high-strength steels
3. Hybrid large-scale 3D printing and powder sintering systems for production
4. Widespread adoption of CAD/CAMs and FEA

The idea here is that manufacturers are getting better at designing materials to take load ONLY in critical orientations through proper CAD design and FEA simulations, then powder-sintering machines to print ONLY the critical structure reducing wasted material.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
well this thread just got taken up to 11, im not sure even google knows what taking load only in critical orientations means, unless your just talking about the type of strength a material possesses like tensile or compressive for example.

i get it, the wrx is cheap, that is why im getting one. if i was rich id be getting an m4 or something. im not expecting it to be very strongly built compared to anything else in its price range. i personally assume that a car manufacturer would scale their drive train with their engine linearly tho(hopefully). also im never going to be on prepped tarmac, this car will never be on a drag strip or any kind of race track. so ill likely get a bit of wheelspin on any launch.

so far peoples responses have me leaning towards people being paranoid more so than there being a real problem with these cars. but all anyone has brought up is transmission clutch or engine problems, any broken axles or diffs ever?
 

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well this thread just got taken up to 11, im not sure even google knows what taking load only in critical orientations means, unless your just talking about the type of strength a material possesses like tensile or compressive for example.
I always get caught between trying to convey a point in a non-technical manner, and just coming off confusing. Sorry about that. Yes, I'm referring to the way in which the part will carry the load -- be it compression or tensile force and the direction in which that force is applied (along the long axis, short axis, etc.).

For example, a connecting rod should be designed to handle significant compression force along the long-axis. With DMLS, it is possible to sinter the powders so the grain is aligned to support high compression force at a lower net weight compared to traditional machining. You get the idea.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
that stuff sounds pretty cool, im glad were still finding ways to improve things so quickly. im not an enginner, you could say my hobby is being a nerd tho. so even tho i dont really fully understand the scope of these things it does seem very cool to me. especially carbon fiber reinforced alloys jeeze that seems cool lol.
 
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