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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First of all what's up guys, I just made this account and I'm very happy to be here!

I'm on the cusp of getting my first car and obviously want to get a WRX, preferably I want to get an 06-07 Hawkeye but I would be happy with a bug eye or blob eye. When it comes to cars and mechanics I am a noob but I'd like to learn more about mechanics and cars. My older brother on the other hand is an engineering major and knows and has a lot of experience when it comes to cars and mechanics so I value his opinion when it comes to these types of things.

However, he is EXTREMELY opposed to the idea of me getting a WRX and constantly tells me and my parents how horrible they are and that I should not get one because it will breakdown and be a problem car. He's never owned one but claims to have several friends who have had major mechanical issues although according to him they were all 2016-2019 models.

Due to my lack of knowledge and experience I'm not sure how to respond to what my brother says nor how to approach this car search as I am here for advice for what I should do. Also I am primarily finding cars on Craigslist and sometimes finding them driving around at used car lots and mechanic shops.

My budget is roughly 10k, could you guys help suggest the following?

-What should I tell my brother?

-Is he in some way right, are there some major common issues with the Hawkeyes? If so What?

-What kinda mileage and price point should I look for?


Thanks a lot for taking the time to read and respond to this, have a great day and God bless.
 

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Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but any WRX you find for under ten grand is more than likely going to be a headache. These cars are ticking time bombs from the factory and I wouldn’t recommend one for a first car.


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I'm on the cusp of getting my first car
-What should I tell my brother?
That he is correct. The WRX has a much higher instance of failure than a more common vehicle. You should also tell him you've come to your senses and decided on something reasonable for a first car like a Camry, Accord, Civic, Impreza, Legacy, or any non performance oriented vehicle that will not only be a better value and more reliable but will also be safer. You can follow that up by letting him know you don't need a "cool" car to impress girls because you've actually got a personality.

You've got no business with a wrx for a first car. That's the cold hard truth. You can sit here and tell everyone how you are different and how you are mature and we can go back through our decades in this automotive fandom and tell you stories about all of those kids and their capabilities and maturity whose families will never see them again because the only thing left is a marble slate. We were all your age, we all know better.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
That he is correct. The WRX has a much higher instance of failure than a more common vehicle. You should also tell him you've come to your senses and decided on something reasonable for a first car like a Camry, Accord, Civic, Impreza, Legacy, or any non performance oriented vehicle that will not only be a better value and more reliable but will also be safer. You can follow that up by letting him know you don't need a "cool" car to impress girls because you've actually got a personality.

You've got no business with a wrx for a first car. That's the cold hard truth. You can sit here and tell everyone how you are different and how you are mature and we can go back through our decades in this automotive fandom and tell you stories about all of those kids and their capabilities and maturity whose families will never see them again because the only thing left is a marble slate. We were all your age, we all know better.
That he is correct. The WRX has a much higher instance of failure than a more common vehicle. You should also tell him you've come to your senses and decided on something reasonable for a first car like a Camry, Accord, Civic, Impreza, Legacy, or any non performance oriented vehicle that will not only be a better value and more reliable but will also be safer. You can follow that up by letting him know you don't need a "cool" car to impress girls because you've actually got a personality.

You've got no business with a wrx for a first car. That's the cold hard truth. You can sit here and tell everyone how you are different and how you are mature and we can go back through our decades in this automotive fandom and tell you stories about all of those kids and their capabilities and maturity whose families will never see them again because the only thing left is a marble slate. We were all your age, we all know better.
Appreciate the reply, I needed to hear this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
You value your brother's opinion enough to try to override it by getting advice from strangers on the internet.
I know that is an oxymoron, I came here to see if people would confirm his opinion because I am such a big fan of the car and his advice was a tough pill to swallow. Thanks for the feedback.
 

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WRXs tend to be very unreliable vehicles especially because WRX owners tend to be very unreliable people.

What is your brother recommending? That will give me a nice measure on whether I can validate his advice or not.
 
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If you’re truly an enthusiast then spend half your budget on something that’ll get you from Point A to B reliably and use the other half on a project.
I was dead set on owning a DSM when I was younger and that thing left me stranded more times than not. I will say it’s what helped me get a grasp on what it takes to own and modify a “Tuner” car, but I missed a lot of class and work in the process.


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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
WRXs tend to be very unreliable vehicles especially because WRX owners tend to be very unreliable people.

What is your brother recommending? That will give me a nice measure on whether I can validate his advice or not.
He is recommending that I get a Golf GTI or a Focus ST
 

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WRXs tend to be very unreliable vehicles especially because WRX owners tend to be very unreliable people.
^This. This is why I don't recommend buying a used WRX or STI. People tend to modify them incorrectly and they beat on the cars. When they have head gasket failures, ringland failures, and bearing failures, they blame it on the car. You don't know what the previous owner has done to the car.

Buy a shit pile SRT4 and work on it. Daily drive a Honda. mmmmmmmmmmmm
 

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He is recommending that I get a Golf GTI or a Focus ST
I know its awesome to have a "cool" car. Neither one of those are anything you should even be suggested to touch. AWD is dangerous enough because of its false sense of security and peoples absolute lack of understanding what AWD does and can do. A high powered FWD car is a death trap. They are even harder to control and tend to understeer even worse than a WRX. Not to mention, Ford nor VW is even remotely in the reliable territory. Absolute power handling from the factory is high on both of them, but longevity isn't anything to be impressed with.

Trust me my dude, find a car that looks good, is clean, and cheap to maintain. Neither the FoST, the WRX, or the GTI fits any of those bills. Buy a nice radio for it, some decent speakers, some subs if those are your thing. Civics are GREAT cars. Although not as reliable today as they were in the late 90s and early 2000's they are still affordable to maintain and look good. They are also loads cheaper than anything suggested.

I've seen this crap multiple times. 11 years ago my buddy wiped out one of our friends driving like a toolbag in a DSM snuffed out the life of one of our friends and nearly killed his brother.

16 years ago another guy I went to school with launched his turbo shitbox into the air on route 8 in NKY split a phone pole in 2 mid way up and killed one of his passengers.

Young guy in his Wrangler slid off the road and flipped himself into the creek up the street from my parents, nobody knew his jeep was down there until the homeowner of the closest house got home.

I can probably go on, but thats the 3 at the top of my head. You don't need, nor should you be allowed to put your hands on any of those cars outside of a test track in my opinion. I know what they can do, kill you faster and easier than other cars. They encourage bad driving habits, reinforce incorrect opinions of oneself and their ability to drive. Don't be a statistic.
 

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I suggest a manual 2nd gen Honda fit. With decent tires they are kinda fun & they take a beating. I know several people that have them, neglect them & they still don't have many issues. It would be reliable while you save for something more fun & gain experience. There is a rally school I follow that recommends the early 2000's base model impreza to learn awd driving techniques, that would be a compromise.

At 40 I agree with most of what was said above. Power without experience & dangerous. The false sense of security with awd is also true although for many I think handling issues are more a lack of feeling what the car is doing.
 

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I'll offer that you look at the Honda Civic as a starter car. If you can find a Civic SI that isn't beat to death, then that would be a starting point. I tend to agree with the statements on the Focus and VW not being very reliable. You could also look at a Mazda 3. These look better and have a nice feel as to how they handle. Mazda deserves a lot more love than they receive.

I will close by asking you to look at safety ratings, too. The reality is that you may bend some metal. Being safe is an added bonus. Words from the faceless, nameless guy on the Internet, likely from the basement of a relatives house....ooooppps, did I write that?
 

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I suggest a manual 2nd gen Honda fit. With decent tires they are kinda fun & they take a beating. I know several people that have them, neglect them & they still don't have many issues. It would be reliable while you save for something more fun & gain experience. There is a rally school I follow that recommends the early 2000's base model impreza to learn awd driving techniques, that would be a compromise.

At 40 I agree with most of what was said above. Power without experience & dangerous. The false sense of security with awd is also true although for many I think handling issues are more a lack of feeling what the car is doing.
The Toyota Matrix can go the distance as well.
 

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What do you think about Miatas?
I think an older Miata is a great car to get acquainted with enthusiastic driving. Even though they don't have a ton of power, they feel fast. An oft repeated phrase is: It is more fun to drive a slow car fast than to drive a fast car slow. I could never drive my WRX beyond 50-60%, while I can drive my 60 year old MG flat out and still be mostly legal. Same goes with an older Miata.

Parts are cheap and plentiful, and go-fast goodies cost a lot and only make it unreliable. My daughter had a 1st year Miata and I thoroughly enjoyed driving it. More than my WRX, if I'm honest.
 
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If you can find a Civic SI that isn't beat to death, then that would be a starting point.
I think this is a great suggestion. They're really fun decent looking cars. The build quality on my 09 was great for the price. My personal preference would be to stick to one of the naturally aspirated motors prior to this generation. (I'm biased toward the 8th gen, but they're getting a lot older.)

Civic Si's also easy to modify if you want a little extra responsible power. Even small and very simple things like HFP shocks/springs and sway bars make a huge difference on these cars. Better pads as well. You can learn a lot from that. They look sharp and run well. If you spend a little time looking, you should be able to find one with lower miles. Just make sure the transmission feels good. That's their downfall. It's always a great investment to pay a shop a couple hours to check it over. Should cost less than $200 for peace of mind and longevity.

I'd bet your brother would approve.

Also, Toyota FRS or Subaru BRZ? I think those would be great learner cars.
 

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I second the above. Try and find yourself a clean Honda Civic Si (FA5). It’s an amazing car and will most likely appreciate in value over time. Also, with forced induction (Supercharger) it’ll put most of these WRX’s to shame.


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I will disagree with some of the statements, I have owned two - unmodified (other than an AP) WRX's and (knock on wood) they have been reliable. My '04 went 150k before I sold it, regular maintenance and the timing belt replaced. The key is stock, which wasn't plainly said. Which for these cars can be hard to find.

I will agree with what was said before - I most likely wouldn't be typing this if I had this car in my teenage years. I made dumb enough decisions in a 4.3 diesel Cutlass Sierra.

Along with the Civic Si as an option does anyone have an opinion on an Accord coupe with the manual? I've heard they are fun cars and that would also be solid.
 
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