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Discussion Starter #1
I have been lurking for a few months different forums. I am looking to get both cars used for around 24-25k
My concern is: will I regret not getting an STI if I get WRX?
I am enclined towards WRX more, because of better mpg, work commute experience, early tourqe.
Also, I can just get 2016-2016 WRX and add 4-5k to make it to my liking?
Any inputs appreciated.
Thanks guys.
 

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I have been lurking for a few months different forums. I am looking to get both cars used for around 24-25k
My concern is: will I regret not getting an STI if I get WRX?
I am enclined towards WRX more, because of better mpg, work commute experience, early tourqe.
Also, I can just get 2016-2016 WRX and add 4-5k to make it to my liking?
Any inputs appreciated.
Thanks guys.
I'd be inclined to guide you towards a wrx and leaving it stock. A commute vehicle needs reliability and the wrx edges out the STI, and both a stock wrx or sti edge out a modified anything.

I'd say get the newest wrx you can with zero modifications and keep it there.
 

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Very interesting suggestion, but I cannot see myself having any of those and not to modify it.
I don't want to scare you away, but you look through Subaru forums and they are littered with blown up engines on mildly modified vehicles. This is something you seriously need to take into account as a block replacement can get to $8k+ very quickly.

The rule of thumb is usually if you want a faster daily driver, buy a faster daily driver. It's fun to modify vehicles, and I will I'm not going to pretend my wrx wasn't, but you've got to remember that modified vehicles are labors of love and expensive to own.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I am confused to be honest,
I'm under an impression now, that the WRX platform is not reliable.

My issue is, I don't like how WRX looks stock.

I would definitely modify it to around 300+ whp

Are there any modified WRX out there with 300+ who that have no issues after let's say 100k + miles
???
 

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Sure, there are plenty. There are also plenty dead within 20k.

When it comes to reliability the honest answer is that the vehicles are of marginal reliability. Most owners will not encounter major issues and will go on to 100, even 200k. However there is enough of a failure rate that Subaru has settled class action lawsuits over it. Especially the EJ.

The FA20 in the new wrx has seemed to hang in there better as of now, but there are still failures. Most failures are on modified vehicles.
 

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Let me expand on this a bit.

Subaru has a few known issues in the wrx and sti line. Piston failure and bearing failure. The class action lawsuits came over the bearing failure and flaws in the design of the oil system. If you Google STI reliability i guarantee it'll be at the top of the list.

Second is piston failure. Every single thing you change on the engine requires a new tune. Intake? New tune. Tgv deletes when they fail? New tune. Intercooler, ideally new tune. Turbo back exhaust, new tune. Nobody tunes as good as Subaru and the known issues with the glass pistons means even a little knock can send you buying a new engine

There are plenty of folks who get mileage on modified vehicles, but there are enough who don't that i wouldn't trust one as my only driver.

The FA engine in the 2015 and up introduced a new failure point. The rods. As far as I'm aware they don't become a real issue until you get up in the 400awhp range, but it's worth being aware. Because of the direct injection they are a little less prone to detonation and the pistons are much less likely to crack a ring land. Oil starvation failures are still not unheard of.

The FA engines also introduce a high pressure fuel pump. Dandy item that's crazy expensive to replace, but also they tend to be pretty reliable. Unless you decide on e85. High ethanol fuels over e50 will burn it up much quicker than you would want. Not an issue for most owners or even tinkerers, but for some it's an important thing to note.

Before 90k miles on my 2011 the exhaust was replaced from the downpipe back, exhaust gaskets replaced multiple times, the tgvs failed, turbo inlet failed, intercooler to throttle body hose failed, the secondary air pump was going, the coils were dead, and my aftermarket downpipe had to have the flanges repaired twice.

Those are all seemingly normal things but each one causes issues that will quickly compound into engine failure if not addressed asap.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Let me expand on this a bit.

Subaru has a few known issues in the wrx and sti line. Piston failure and bearing failure. The class action lawsuits came over the bearing failure and flaws in the design of the oil system. If you Google STI reliability i guarantee it'll be at the top of the list.

Second is piston failure. Every single thing you change on the engine requires a new tune. Intake? New tune. Tgv deletes when they fail? New tune. Intercooler, ideally new tune. Turbo back exhaust, new tune. Nobody tunes as good as Subaru and the known issues with the glass pistons means even a little knock can send you buying a new engine

There are plenty of folks who get mileage on modified vehicles, but there are enough who don't that i wouldn't trust one as my only driver.

The FA engine in the 2015 and up introduced a new failure point. The rods. As far as I'm aware they don't become a real issue until you get up in the 400awhp range, but it's worth being aware. Because of the direct injection they are a little less prone to detonation and the pistons are much less likely to crack a ring land. Oil starvation failures are still not unheard of.

The FA engines also introduce a high pressure fuel pump. Dandy item that's crazy expensive to replace, but also they tend to be pretty reliable. Unless you decide on e85. High ethanol fuels over e50 will burn it up much quicker than you would want. Not an issue for most owners or even tinkerers, but for some it's an important thing to note.

Before 90k miles on my 2011 the exhaust was replaced from the downpipe back, exhaust gaskets replaced multiple times, the tgvs failed, turbo inlet failed, intercooler to throttle body hose failed, the secondary air pump was going, the coils were dead, and my aftermarket downpipe had to have the flanges repaired twice.

Those are all seemingly normal things but each one causes issues that will quickly compound into engine failure if not addressed asap.
Thanks so much, short and straight to the point.
I am not sure if I could deal with those potential failures. I was thinking for a 2015-2017 STI with no mods to keep it reliable, but I feel that it is not a perfect daily driver.
Little out of topic, what manual sedan would be an alternative to WRX?
I just cannot come up with any. A hatch - ok, VW, but I have heard they fail as well after mods.
 

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There is no perfect car.

I have daily-driven my 2015 STI for 5 years and 48,000 miles. It's fine, but lacks amenities, particularly at the $36,000 price point. The WRX will also lack amenities.

The Mazda3 is available in a Manual transmission, will come in NEW at the price point you suggested, and come brimming with tech and fuel economy. Plus they are a blast to drive.

The "early torque" argument that is always thrown out on the WRX is a bit silly IMO. Yes, at full song the WRX will make more torque earlier than the STI, but the 2.5L motor in the STI makes more torque in vacuum than the FA20 in the WRX which is 90% of the time the car is driven. Around town, the STI will feel torquier.
 

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BTW -- cars are designed within margins of error for the sake of reliability. With Euro6c regulations soon afoot, manufacturers are improving engine designs with lighter pistons and rotating assemblies, improved crankcase breathing with reduced windage, more efficient (typically narrower) bearing assemblies, and control systems that run on the ragged edge of the Det threshold. Modern cars are very much a technological Tour de Force.

A 300hp car is designed to handle 300hp. No more, no less. Will the engine and driveline survive at 350hp? Perhaps, depending on the manufacturer's preferred margin and the weakest link. Is it guaranteed to survive at 350hp? No.

With ever-increasing regulations, engines just aren't blatantly overbuilt like they once were. The world moves on.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks everyone,
I am on a lookout for a WRX.
I know for a fact that I will regret not getting it since I always wanted to have one.
I will try my best to keep it top notch, high quality maintenance and will hope it serves me well.
 

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It really depends on what you intend to do with your car. If you are doing 99% of your driving on the street, get the WRX. If you spend over 10% of your driving time at the track, get the STI. Unless you can wind it up all the time, you're not going to enjoy the STI as much as you will the WRX on a daily basis. The WRX does run out of torque at the top, but you can't stay up there for long on the street without getting into trouble anyway. One other factor to consider is appearances: if you want to stand out more, and need the car to boost your ego, let's be honest, the STI is the one to get 😆

I also always wanted a WRX (since the original bugeye commercials) and had the same question before I finally bought one. I've put more than 26k miles on my 2017 WRX Base in 16 months of ownership and I love it. I'm running the COBB 91 Octane OTS Stage 1 tune, which definitely tames the surge prone power delivery of the stock tune and adds some power.

My WRX is not a ton slower than a stock STI and, even accounting for the overly optimistic computed fuel economy, I can get 34 mpg on the highway if I drive the speed limit and always avoid boost. Get into the boost a lot and the figure drops about 9 mpg on the highway. The boost comes on fairly early and the 'brings a smile to your face' factor is high.

Now, it seems they plan for an FA20 variant in the 2021 STI and Levorg(JDM) that puts out 315hp at the crank. If I get an STI I'll be waiting for that engine. The new engine should make the STI a more well-rounded machine that doesn't suck fuel like a large car with a V8. Then I can enjoy the transmission and center diff that I lust after from the STI.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Perfect,
its just feels annoying whenever someone sees you in WRX they go - oh, its nice an STI, pshhhh
More point towrds WRX though,
thank you
 

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IMO, the wrx and STi are reliable. I have had 4 turbo'd subarus. 3 wrx's, and now my STi. All of which were modified. None of my wrx's ever broke down or had a failure. My STi spun a rod bearing in September of 2018. Things happen, and I love my STi so much that I spent close to 20k on a full build on it. There are literally thousands of wrx's and sti's sold every year, but when you google "Subaru wrx sti engine failure", you will see a ton of of threads and posts about rod bearing failures and ringland failures throughout the years. So lets say there are 250 engine failures in the wrx/sti every year. In that same year there were 15k sold. If you catch what I am saying. Failure is not as common as a good and healthy running wrx or sti.

Any time you modify a car the reliability goes down, the more hp and mods you do, the higher the chances. Proper installation of parts, and a good tune by a reputable tuner significantly reduce failure odds as well. There are literally so many factors that can contribute, that I could write you a book.

If you change the oil, keep up on maintenance, modify smartly, and tune accordingly then you should not have a problem. Especially in the 300-350whp range. With a good tune, those are pretty safe numbers on a stock block.
 

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Either way, you join the club. Most everyone waves, WRX or STI. We all appreciate a tin can with AWD, a hood scoop, and a powerful engine. Otherwise, we'd buy a Volkswagen or Audi and live in relative luxury, having emptier wallets and a car without much character.
 

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Hi All, I just test drove a 2017 WRX limited CVT with the 268 HP with about 40K mileage, was a real blast and pleasure test driving the car recently at a dealership . Got bored of my 150 HP 2017 Subaru Forrester CVT for last 3 years.
I do Not intend to do any mods, just use it mostly for pleasure driving .
considering the subaru CVT reliability , can any one please relate their experience about the 2017 WRX limited CVT and if I should got about owning this car. Thanks a lot.
 

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CVT vs. Manual is a completely personal choice. If you don't mind driving an automatic (or even prefer), the CVT seems the obvious choice. When comparing the hardware between the CVT drivetrain and the WRX 6MT, the CVT is the technically superior choice. It's your call.
 

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@zax it was just a good natured jab. I don't disagree. To be fair, I've never driven a WRX CVT, but I have driven other vehicles equipped with CVT. It's odd and without character, IMO. I'm planning on buying my wife a Forester 2.0XT CVT, and thankfully I won't have to drive it much.
 
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