This is my 2000 Impreza RS coupe which has been my daily driver since 2004. I bought it used from a gentleman in Dallas who had it set up for autocross. Faced with the prospect of buying a new car, I couldn’t find it in myself to part with it! Now after years of wear and tear I am committed to making this thing new again, and to eventually make it into the STI it always wanted to be
I had a leaky head gasket on the driver side cylinder bank. Subaru did the head gasket sealant many years ago but that stuff never lasts. While I was replacing the head gaskets I went ahead and did the timing belt and pullies, water pump, thermostat, spark plugs, valve cover gaskets, oil/filter change, and new transmission gear oil. The engine bay got a bit of cleaning as well.
I got tired of my wobbly shifter so I decided to replace the shifter linkage and shift bushings. It was a fairly simple install, but when I attempted to put the transmission crossmember back on I stripped one of the front bolt holes. I had to order a 12mmx1.25 tap from Amazon because no local stores carried a tap with that thread pitch. I also took the opportunity to upgrade to a Group N transmission mount since my old one was worn out.
Here is the repaired mounting point:
Group N mount installed:
The interior needed some work as well so I replaced my broken cubby unit with a new OE one from the dealer and swapped out the worn out shifter leather for a set I found on Amazon:
Last Christmas I started to get more serious with repair/upgrades. I installed KYB AGX struts with King OE height GC8 springs and STI Group N strut mounts. I was previously running H&R sport springs on stock struts. The car came with AGX's / H&R sports when I bought it. The original AGX's wore out in 2009 and I had the original stock springs put on to save cash at the time. I always felt the H&R springs were too harsh and there was almost no fender clearance in the rear.
I purchased all new OEM strut components to build the new shocks. For the strut mounts I purchased a full set of Group N GC8 mounts from Rallispec. Once I got the shocks put together they went in painlessly. The car definitely rides a bit higher and the ride is a lot more pleasant while still retaining some stiffness.
I also treated myself to some new wheels and tires. I purchased 17" Sparco Assetto Gara's paired with Bridgestone Potenza's from Tire Rack. I really dig the new look.
Now that I'm all caught up on past maintenance pictures, its time for current events! My nearly 20 year old clear coat has been failing for the past several years. Along with it a lot of the moulding had dry rotted. I've decided to repaint the car myself and replace worn out exterior pieces along the way. Here are some pictures of the clear coat damage:
I decided to delete the side door bump guard trim that is not present on the JDM models. I saw pictures of other members' cars that had this done and I like the appearance. After removing the trim there were mounting holes left in the door that had to be patched. I patched the inside of the door with fiberglass and filled the outside surface with bondo. The tricky hole was the very front holes on each door. There was no way to access the back side to apply fiberglass. I improvised by rigging a patch of fiberglass cloth attached to a piece of duct tape cut larger than the hole. I attached a piece of string to the patch and shoved it into the hole. Once in, I applied resin to the inside of the panel using a q-tip and pulled the patch flush with the inside the panel and let it cure. Once cured, I cut the string and filled the hole with bondo. The result came out pretty nice so far.