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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, I'm sure this has been asked already and for that I'm sorry. I'm just trying to get a breakdown for my lifestyle.
If you don't mind giving your opinion I would really appreciate it.
I can easily afford the new wrx (when it's available) and can still afford the STI (it would obviously be a little harder but I make enough for either). Is it worth spending more for just the bragging rights associated with owning an STI though?
My real question is, what should I buy? I've done extensive research on both and I don't plan on tracking either vehicle no matter what I purchase.
I know the engine is old in the STI and not as efficient but come on it's still an sti! It sounds bad but 90% of my reason for even wanting an STI is just for the wow factor of having it, I agree that the standard wrx is a more economical car in almost every sense.
I live in California but I license out of Minnesota so emission standards won't affect my decision. The only mods I would do are maybe a down pipe and a protune to get more out of it.
If you don't mind sharing your experiences/why you would go for either that would be a huge help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Also another reason to make this new thread is I haven't seen much/anything on the 2018's information. I understand that knowledge is limited since they aren't out yet though!
 

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Lol. If you think bragging rights is the reason to buy the STI then buy the wrx

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Definitely sounds like a WRX is the car for you. If you're not going to track, etc. The STi is just wasted.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Lol. If you think bragging rights is the reason to buy the STI then buy the wrx

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I know the mechanical differences in the two, I was just trying to make a point that the STI carries a lot more weight in the eyes of other people in my opinion. I get that it sounds vain but at the end of the day who doesn't like getting the glancing eyes.

Regardless I appreciate your input.
 

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Maybe once upon the time, neither the WRX or STI get much attention as they are generally out classed by vehicles like the Evo and focus RS. Their looks have become very nondescript and basically camry esque. Vanity should never be a reason to own a vehicle. You'll end up over your head faster than you can blink an eye.

The turbo Subaru vehicles are an absolute labor of love. They are not particularly fast compared to what's out there, they are not particularly reliable, nor cheap to maintain. They can be finicky, and very specific when it comes to the aftermarket parts most parts need ECU calibration outside of what Cobb offers as an ots tune.

Only you can answer what to buy. Nobody can answer it for you. I can list advantages of each vehicle all day long and in the end none of it means anything. You go look at them, drive them. Don't worry about the interior they both rattle and make noises, the radios are weak. Where they differ is the entirety different engine and transmission combos. We can argue semantics about what's better, but it's going to be what makes you smile.

On a personal level. I would probably grab up the STI as from what I've read it's the last year with the torsen center diff.

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XJMan summed it up best. If you arent going to race it or moderately mod it then the extra STi stuff is overkill. IMO its nice to have, esp if you have an affinity for the old motor and the way you can make it sound BUT whether or not it is worth the extra $$$$ only you can say. These days the STi is pretty commonplace and no one is going to oohhh and ahh over it unless they are 15 or something.
 

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If it's all about the "wow" factor I can think of many other cars out there that handle better, are faster, more expensive, rarer, etc.

I always thought I wanted the STI simply for the better handling . . . but as I got older I realized what I really wanted was a car that fit my "needs" and the truth is the STI offers more than what I would ever need since I have no plans to track the car.

True WRX/STI fans do not judge and think that WRX are inferior . . . rather they simply realize that these two cars, while similar, are also different enough to appeal to certain types of drivers. As mentioned, buying a STI just because of the perception of an added "wow" factor will eventually become old as the realization dawns that there are many out there . . . and there are so many other cars that folks will truly get excited about . . . except for the occasional, aforementioned 15-or 16-year old driving a 1995 Corolla with a bolted on spoiler, lime green Plastidipped rims and enough stickers covering the rear window to assure one that there is no way they can see out the back . . . they may tell you that the STI is the only car to buy.
 

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As simple as I can put it (and have done so many times)...
WRX: A street vehicle that can be driven on a track
STI: A track vehicle that can be driven on the street


If you're not going to be tracking the vehicles, the real mechanical benefits of the STI, for the most part, won't be realized; unless you're driving in a reckless manner on public roadways, you are better off with the WRX.

Outside of the tuner community, people won't know the difference between a WRX or STI; they're both a "boy racer" vehicle with a big hood scoop and a crappy interior. There isn't any "wow" factor for probably 75+% of the population, and the people you'd impress while hard-parked at the mall isn't worth the additional financial investment.
 

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If you are a fan of the STi and really want it, you will be getting one eventually. You can choose to have one now or later.

I bought the 2002 WRX new and wanted an STi since they were available here but couldnt afford it at the time. When it was time to trade up, the Legacy Spec B was out so i got one of those. I loved it but I've always wanted to get an STi(I'll be trading in the Legacy and getting one later this year -13 years after they came out).

You could have it now or later, your choice. Have you looked into the insurance difference between the two?


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They all summed it up pretty well. But here is my insight. I just recently purchased my first STi, a 2012 limited sedan. I have owned 3 wrx's prior. And the main reason for that was that I couldn't afford an STi before now. I will never look back. I love my STi. Not saying the wrx's weren't nice or fun, but I would have never tracked them.

For me, I didn't really buy an STi with the main intention of taking it to a track. Nor did I buy it for other people to drool over it. I mean I do get the occasional "nice car", and "is that thing fast". But I just acknowledge them and move on. For me it was more personal. I have been a Subaru fan since I could drive. With the dream of one day owning an STi. I finally got my finances straight enough to afford one, and jumped on the first one that checked every box on my list of buying.

I do intend on attending the occasional autocross event once I get another vehicle to daily. Until then my STi will be a daily street driven car and I love the hell out of it.

Do not buy a car to impress other people. Buy a car because it is what you truly want.
 

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To dig a little deeper into my reasoning, I will do my best to explain. I have always loved watching auto cross. And dreamed of attending and driving in one. Knowing that the wrx's could never really handle launching too well, and the earlier years with the even worse gearboxes, I never signed up to do one. Too many people (not saying you) want an STi for the wrong reasons. They want one to look cool, they want the big wing so people will look, they want that STi badge for the bragging rights of owning one.

Most people don't really look into the actual mechanical and electrical advances an STi has over a wrx. Just to touch on a few...... DCCD, Si-Drive, brembo brakes, beefier transmission, and a much stronger rear end. These things alone are all reasons why I wanted an STi. My STi will be on a track sooner or later. And the price tag to add any of these things to a wrx is much more $$$ than what the premium is for an STi off of the lot.

MY dream became a reality last june when I sat in the drivers seat of my STi and drove it home.
 

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The 2017 has the torsen center diff as well, the 2018 dropped it for a new unit that as far as I'm aware is unproven.

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Definitely sounds like a WRX is the car for you. If you're not going to track, etc. The STi is just wasted.
This is a non-argument. The WRX is more car than most people need for legal street driving, but that doesn't mean an N/A Impreza is the right car for most ClubWRX members. I wanted an STI but opted to put the difference into educational plans for my two young kids. I knew I would partially regret that decision forever - and three years later on I still wish I had the STI AWD system, gearbox, DCCI and better brakes. The STI also offers more torque in vacuum, which is where most of your daily driving will be. But I still understand my reasons for getting the WRX, and would make the same choice if I could go back in time. A number of people on Subaru forums do not think the same way - I for one always want a little bit more out of my car, and many others have discovered after a lengthy mod process that they would have been better starting off with the STI platform.

The WRX certainly some advantages - e.g. a smoother engine, lighter clutch, commute-friendly gear ratios, much cheaper maintenance - but the cost to make it into an STI later could have bought something far more prestigious. I think that's the key thing for the OP - drive both, and unless you prefer the compliance of the WRX as a daily driver then get the STI. I don't think you would be satisfied if you are always thinking about the extra performance you could have had.
 

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This is a non-argument. The WRX is more car than most people need for legal street driving, but that doesn't mean an N/A Impreza is the right car for most ClubWRX members. I wanted an STI but opted to put the difference into educational plans for my two young kids. I knew I would partially regret that decision forever - and three years later on I still wish I had the STI AWD system, gearbox, DCCI and better brakes. The STI also offers more torque in vacuum, which is where most of your daily driving will be. But I still understand my reasons for getting the WRX, and would make the same choice if I could go back in time. A number of people on Subaru forums do not think the same way - I for one always want a little bit more out of my car, and many others have discovered after a lengthy mod process that they would have been better starting off with the STI platform.

The WRX certainly some advantages - e.g. a smoother engine, lighter clutch, commute-friendly gear ratios, much cheaper maintenance - but the cost to make it into an STI later could have bought something far more prestigious. I think that's the key thing for the OP - drive both, and unless you prefer the compliance of the WRX as a daily driver then get the STI. I don't think you would be satisfied if you are always thinking about the extra performance you could have had.
The thing is, I don't think this particular buyer is thinking about performance at all. He's thinking "People will think I'm cool if I have an STi", and if that's the case, a set of wheels and trunk swap and most people will think it's an STi anyway.
 

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The thing is, I don't think this particular buyer is thinking about performance at all. He's thinking "People will think I'm cool if I have an STi", and if that's the case, a set of wheels and trunk swap and most people will think it's an STi anyway.
:rotfl: Couldn't be more true!
 

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The 2017 has the torsen center diff as well, the 2018 dropped it for a new unit that as far as I'm aware is unproven.

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This is speculation, but I can say with 90% confidence that the transmission and center diff design will remain largely unchanged as it has over the years.

The STI 6MT has seen several revisions over the years, moving to a torsen center diff, losing the oil pump, and changing gear ratios, but the unit design has remained relatively unchanged and has always been quite strong.

I would opt for the 2018 mainly due to the fact that Subaru has usually been quite systematic about improvements that are not necessarily front-page worthy but welcome.

Dropping the Torsen center diff may be a cost-cutting measure, but I doubt Subaru would be making the car perform worse in the process.

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As a daily driver, the upgraded suspension on the WRX, better sound insulation, upgraded infotainment center and lumbar support would have me looking hard at a 2018 vs 17. Those are all things that matter to me when I spend 2-4 hrs a day commuting. Of course if 17s are significantly cheaper then I'd vote with my wallet
 
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