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2008-2014 WRX STi any good?

Old 02-10-2019, 06:34 PM
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2008-2014 WRX STi any good?

I've got a good price on a used 2014 WRX STI Sedan with 110,000Km on it, it looks clean A/F, rust checked every year, doesn't look like it was modded (or heavily if it was)....it pulls hard and is a riot to drive....albiet the interior is utter **** and the stereo has got to go lol...like my cobalt has an arguably nicer cabin.... but yeah...looks like it wasn't even driven through it's life, I talked with the salesman that took it in and he said the owner was pretty mature and down to earth...didn't come off as some "immature goof you usually see with these"

Pending the safety/financing\insurance not going mad I'll be picking it tomorrow just wanted to know if anyone has experience with these...I hear horror stories about ringland failure but is that really as bad a problem as people say it is?

I'll be giving the dealer whatever they want for my car it's got a bajillion KM on it, plus an accident (small accident) in it's history and it's gonna need a new clutch plus a few grand worth of other **** and yeah..I'll take what I can get from the dealer, I just don't have room to keep two cars here in my Condo and don't want to deal with private sale my car is an utter basket case with 260,XXX km on it and I'm just....over it?

But yeah I can obviously get out of it if I wanted to (which I don't) but has anyone here owned one of these? I mean I was giggling the whole time driving it but on a serious level are these cars utter nightmares? or if I maintain it and don't mod the hell out of it will it prove reliable

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Old 02-10-2019, 08:57 PM
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A friend of mine picked one up after an accident with his Cobalt SC loves it, the sti is a nice upgrade.
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Old 02-11-2019, 12:21 PM
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Leemanfor can give you good advice on them, he has an Sti. There were issues I believe with the 2012-2014 for pistons and I believe some got replaced free of charge. May want to see if the one you are looking at had it done prior.
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Old 02-11-2019, 12:41 PM
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What trim level of STi is it?
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Old 02-11-2019, 01:14 PM
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Yes, I went from an 08 SS to a 2012 STi Base as I didn't want a sunroof, so I didn't look for a premium.

how much do they want for it? a 14 with 68k miles should be right around 22-23k USD depending on how beat up it is

What would you like to know?

I miss my 08 SS for the gas mileage, thats about it, in my STi I averaged 19 mpg in the city and about 21-22 highway if I drove it nice on pump gas. I'm running E70 right now and get ~15 mpg.

minor mods(Intake, catback, downpipe, boost controller, Accessport) will get you between 280-320 whp and 300-350 wtq. depending on dyno.

The aftermarket is huge, and since the EJ25 has been around since the 80's we know all the issues with it and how to overcome them.

The ringland issue isn't as bad as people make it out to be, and I broke cylinder 4 ringland. I can't 100% say it was my tuners fault, but I sent logs to various tuners who said I ran too much timing on pump gas 91 and it wasn't safe.

There are 3 issues you see mostly see with these:
1. Ringland failure. this has happened on stock cars, but its rare. I bought mine with 39k miles in 2015 and broke ringland 4 at 53k, about a month before I went "Stage 2" which is catless downpipe and 3 port boost controller. There are thousands of people with no issues, and 400 whp is considered the "limit" of the stock engine. although many people have pushed the stock engine to 500-600 whp and never had issues. its all how its tuned and driven. just like the LNF, you dont want to go WOT below 3500 RPMs and lug the engine

2. Spun rod bearings. You hear this a lot, but these cars can use oil. People don't check them, and then they spin a bearing. EJ's are very hard on 5w-30 so most people run a 40w. Subaru changed the requirement for oil in 2011 to ONLY specify 5w-30, where as in prior years they recommended if you are to drive the car in hot climates or hard, you need to run a 40w. They did this due to stricter emissions as a 40w can reduce gas mileage. Just run a 40w. change it every 3-4k and you will be fine.

3. Firewall welds can break. This seems to happen on only the 08-11 cars, but in some years the firewall is too thin and the spot welds that hold the clutch to the firewall will break. Subaru sometimes covers this, sometimes they dont. Its relatively easy to fix, and there are multiple how-tos online to fix it. The common noise you hear is a squeak when you push the clutch in, and if you look at the brake pedal it will move to the left. I have 75k miles on my car and my clutch squeaks, but my break pedal doesn't move. this is about as rare as the porous block issue on LNFs.

4. Power steering leak. This is very common, and very annoying. I had mine start leaking around 60k miles and it was a slow leak. it leaks right around where the rack input shaft connects to the steering wheel joints. Its not too hard to pull the rack and replace the seals, and the seals are like $50. Most common fix for this is to swap in a 2015+ STi rack as its a quicker steering ratio and is a direct bolt in, just kind of expensive ($650 USD for just the part).

those are the most common issues I can think of. The drivetrain is incredibly strong, with many people running a stock STi 6 speed well into the 700-800 whp range.

but for just a daily driver with some minor mods, they are fun cars. get snow tires and they are a tank in the snow.

let me know if you have any other questions.
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Old 02-11-2019, 02:03 PM
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Hey this is fantastic thank you!!

Originally Posted by leemanfor View Post
Yes, I went from an 08 SS to a 2012 STi Base as I didn't want a sunroof, so I didn't look for a premium.

how much do they want for it? a 14 with 68k miles should be right around 22-23k USD depending on how beat up it is
It's got 100,XXX on the clock and I'm paying 21K (Canadian) for it all in all I think it's fair

What would you like to know?

I miss my 08 SS for the gas mileage, thats about it, in my STi I averaged 19 mpg in the city and about 21-22 highway if I drove it nice on pump gas. I'm running E70 right now and get ~15 mpg.

My commute is 8Km round trip now so it wont be getting too many miles daily

minor mods(Intake, catback, downpipe, boost controller, Accessport) will get you between 280-320 whp and 300-350 wtq. depending on dyno.

The aftermarket is huge, and since the EJ25 has been around since the 80's we know all the issues with it and how to overcome them.

That's one thing I will say, there seems to be whole youtube videos on how to do/fix everything on this car I was super shocked and the aftermarket parts market is unreal

The ringland issue isn't as bad as people make it out to be, and I broke cylinder 4 ringland. I can't 100% say it was my tuners fault, but I sent logs to various tuners who said I ran too much timing on pump gas 91 and it wasn't safe.

I'll be doing a compression test later but the techs who did the safety said it doesn't show any signs of problem in that respect (I know the tech's at that dealership) they said the car looks like it's never been driven so to speak they already knew about ringland failure before I asked

There are 3 issues you see mostly see with these:
1. Ringland failure. this has happened on stock cars, but its rare. I bought mine with 39k miles in 2015 and broke ringland 4 at 53k, about a month before I went "Stage 2" which is catless downpipe and 3 port boost controller. There are thousands of people with no issues, and 400 whp is considered the "limit" of the stock engine. although many people have pushed the stock engine to 500-600 whp and never had issues. its all how its tuned and driven. just like the LNF, you dont want to go WOT below 3500 RPMs and lug the engine

2. Spun rod bearings. You hear this a lot, but these cars can use oil. People don't check them, and then they spin a bearing. EJ's are very hard on 5w-30 so most people run a 40w. Subaru changed the requirement for oil in 2011 to ONLY specify 5w-30, where as in prior years they recommended if you are to drive the car in hot climates or hard, you need to run a 40w. They did this due to stricter emissions as a 40w can reduce gas mileage. Just run a 40w. change it every 3-4k and you will be fine.

Good to know!!! It's getting an oil change as we speak

3. Firewall welds can break. This seems to happen on only the 08-11 cars, but in some years the firewall is too thin and the spot welds that hold the clutch to the firewall will break. Subaru sometimes covers this, sometimes they dont. Its relatively easy to fix, and there are multiple how-tos online to fix it. The common noise you hear is a squeak when you push the clutch in, and if you look at the brake pedal it will move to the left. I have 75k miles on my car and my clutch squeaks, but my break pedal doesn't move. this is about as rare as the porous block issue on LNFs.

4. Power steering leak. This is very common, and very annoying. I had mine start leaking around 60k miles and it was a slow leak. it leaks right around where the rack input shaft connects to the steering wheel joints. Its not too hard to pull the rack and replace the seals, and the seals are like $50. Most common fix for this is to swap in a 2015+ STi rack as its a quicker steering ratio and is a direct bolt in, just kind of expensive ($650 USD for just the part).

Yep so that's the only thing the dealer noticed was a minor...SUPER minor weep around the P/S gear I'd imagine it's something I can fix....my cobalt's P/S rack is completely toast lol
those are the most common issues I can think of. The drivetrain is incredibly strong, with many people running a stock STi 6 speed well into the 700-800 whp range.

but for just a daily driver with some minor mods, they are fun cars. get snow tires and they are a tank in the snow.

let me know if you have any other questions.
I'm actually leaving for the dealer in around an hour to cross the Ts and dot the I's should be driving it home tonight ^_^
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Old 02-11-2019, 02:58 PM
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Originally Posted by 63 Nova SS View Post
Leemanfor can give you good advice on them, he has an Sti. There were issues I believe with the 2012-2014 for pistons and I believe some got replaced free of charge. May want to see if the one you are looking at had it done prior.
My friend has a 14 that the dealer voided his warranty after taking his car in due to rod knock. They claimed his cobb intake and borla exhaust caused the bearing failure... So only advice I can give is don't mod it while under warranty or have a good friend at a dealer to cover for you.
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Old 02-11-2019, 03:10 PM
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Save yourself the headache and buy an Evo instead.
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Old 02-11-2019, 03:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Slowbalt2000 View Post
Save yourself the headache and buy an Evo instead.

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Old 02-11-2019, 04:42 PM
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I would only drive one if I didn't have to pay for it.
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Old 02-11-2019, 04:58 PM
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They do seem to be more fragile than most cars but if you take care of them they could last, or not...youll find out.
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Old 02-11-2019, 05:00 PM
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im sure we can find just as many videos of blown up cobalts
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Old 02-11-2019, 05:07 PM
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90% of the Cobalts that blew up were improperly modded.

These STis are stock and yet they blow up, in fact a tune usually makes them last longer. The final straw is Subaru knows of the problem but almost always blames some unrelated thing (oh u got a catback? WARRANTY DENIED) as an excuse to not do the repair.

Never in a million years would I buy a Subaru WRX/STi.
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Old 02-11-2019, 05:11 PM
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Old 02-11-2019, 05:16 PM
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lol. you find 5 videos of cars that are blown up on Youtube. when Subaru sells 30k a year.

by that logic, Cobalt SS sedans are garbage if 1 blows an engine stock cause they made 474 of them. haha
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Old 02-11-2019, 10:20 PM
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Way more than five videos and it's a known problem that costs thousands of dollars to fix, with Subaru likely to deny a warranty repair.

Yeah no thanks.
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Old 02-12-2019, 04:50 PM
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The only cobalts I saw blow up had retros by Mkulrey

Good thread though, ive been browsing STi's as well and answered all my questions
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Old 02-12-2019, 05:14 PM
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Well it passed safety perfectly and I had the dealership techs give it a good look over and the thing is spotless.

Spark plugs + compression test were done 5,XXX Km ago and no problems found, as well as plenty of oil change documents, diff + Tranny fluids were all done 4,XXX Km ago

Car is absolutly mint, interior is spotless, paint 9.5/10, rust checked and came with 4 new summer tires.

Yes the ringland failure thing is in the back of my head I'll admit but it's just such a wonderful machine I had to have it, and now that I'm only like a 8-10K round trip to work this car wont see a lot of miles...anyhow here it is

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Old 02-12-2019, 05:31 PM
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Def nice, if you want to count on warranty though don't mod it. Otherwise have at it
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Old 02-12-2019, 05:32 PM
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Good luck with it.
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Old 02-12-2019, 05:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Kolt View Post
Def nice, if you want to count on warranty though don't mod it. Otherwise have at it
Not sure which way I'll go with mods...probably just leave it stock and in the summer do some PM work then probably limit it to equal length headers and an access port, wont go crazy with it

Originally Posted by Slowbalt2000 View Post
Good luck with it.
Lol yep....I mean aside from good maintenance and not trashing it theirs not much else I can do right
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Old 02-12-2019, 07:20 PM
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Congrats! You got a lot of miles out of that white cobalt.
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Old 02-12-2019, 07:39 PM
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Originally Posted by 63 Nova SS View Post
Congrats! You got a lot of miles out of that white cobalt.
Oh for sure, I think the worst thing is when I got my job outta college that was a 180km round trip 5 days a week for 3 years than another 2 years of 88km round trips it aged the car so rapidly, all the paint damage, miles, wear and tear it really did a number on it

I did love the car but it was gonna need SO.MUCH.WORK and what with the paint falling off it, and the rust eating away at it...the car felt like it was going to come apart at 120km/hr it just looked and felt tired and beat and I don't know my heart just wasn't in it anymore.

....And who knows this thing could explode all the same but it won't be seeing nearly as much use and I'm just kinda excited again .... I was giggling the whole drive home it's so fast vs what I'm used to and I'm astounded with the handling

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Old 02-12-2019, 11:07 PM
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They are great cars. Hope it lasts a long time for you and doesn't have any issues. I know motors aren't real cheap for them. Had they been a little more comfortable on long trips I may have ended up in one. Enjoy!
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Old 02-13-2019, 02:04 AM
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Twins! well, you got fog-lights. bastard
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