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swaps on swaps
1,962 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
The transformation:

Most recent look :)

Engine when I got it:

And now!! :D

Pictures from the most recent photoshoot (Credit to CSM Photography)

And now the story:

Betty, or Bettyblue is my 2000 rally blue pearl Subaru 2.5RS, girl built and girl funded. I bought her on January 14th, 2012. This is technically my second subaru, but I'm counting it as my first. I owned an RSTi a little before this car but sold it in order to do the swap and work myself. I also owned a '98 obs rid of that and bought my 4th subaru; a 2009 impreza 2.5i :) I was always into subarus and wanted an STi since I was about 14 (when the 2004's came out) and ALWAYS wanted a rally blue subie. During high school and college I just drove around the Jetta my parents provided me with, once it came time to hand it down to my brother and buy my own car I was on the hunt for a subaru. I found this site and fell in the love with the older body styles and ended up strictly searching for a 1999-2001 2.5RS.

I found her for sale in PA not too far from where I live, and when I made the drive to look at it, I ended up bringing it home that same day. Compared to other subies I had gone to look at, this one was by far the best. By that I basically mean, I was looking for an RS that was as close to stock as possible so that I could learn and do everything on my own, and had been taken good care of mechanically, with no body work done so that I could have it all done myself.

It had 155k on it, with a little quarter panel rust, but new brakes, tires, timing belts, bearings/idlers etc., fluids, and plugs and wires. I bought it from the second owner; the first owner was a member of his family. You could tell the guy I bought it from loves subarus (he has an '05 STi, a Legacy Spec B, and a newer race STi) and took good care of this one after grabbing it off of his family member, who had attempted to rice it out with an obnoxious exhaust, underglow, and subaru paintings on every side of the car :facepalm:

The only "mods" installed when I bought the car-
EBAY cold air intake
Tenabe Racing exhaust
STi aluminum shift knob
wrx floormats
wrx radio/6disc CD player

some pics from the day I brought the RS home...

After an entire exterior remod and paint:


swaps on swaps
1,962 Posts
Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Modification List:

The swap list from the STi includes(47k at time of swap):
Full ej257 engine swap with stock vf39 turbo

6 speed transmission

Driveshaft and rear differential

All axles

All hubs

Front and rear Brembo brake calipers

Front and rear subframes

STi steering rack

Front control arms

Lateral links and trailing arms

Brake booster, brake master

Clutch master, clutch slave

Intercooler spray setup

Other Modifications:

NEW/IMPROVED! Engine Rebuild @ AREA1320 6/2013 :
-heads cleaned/machined
All of the following were BRAND NEW PARTS
-3mm Grimmspeed phenolic spacers
-TGV deletes
-NEW heat-treated crank
-99.5mm bore Wiseco 8.9:1 compression pistons
-Manley H rods
-King bearings
-oem master gasket kit from Flatirons tuning
-11mm STi oil pump
-Killer B oil pickup
-Grimmspeed lightweight crank pulley


Koyo radiator
 with 12" Spal fans (OEM wiring)
JDM in-fender coolant overflow tank

SPT short ram intake

STi oil cap

Zerosports intercooler splitter with nozzles for spray, modified for STi tmic
Group N engine and trans mounts and pitch stop

ACT clutch, ACT pressure plate, stock flywheel

Technafit stainless clutch line

DCCDPro uni. controller 

Kartboy short shifter, front and rear shifter bushings

Whiteline steering rack bushings

L&E Fabrications steering rack adapter

Walbro 255 fuel pump


UEL headers

UP with extra o2 bung

Catted/Divorced DP with extra bung
Grimmspeed gasket adapter (no more leak!)

Cobb turbo heatshield

Cobb catback

Grimmspeed gaskets


Grimmspeed master cylinder brace

Technafit stainless braided brake lines

Hawk Performance Ceramic pads

Powerslot front and rear slotted rotors


ISC n1 coilovers

JDM STi carbon fiber front strut bar (still needs to be modified)

Nameless rear strut bar

Whiteline adjustable 24mm front sway bar

Whiteline adjustable 22mm rear sway bar

Whiteline heavy duty rear sway bar mounts

Kartboy front endlinks

Kartboy rear endlinks
GTSpec rear differential mount


JDM version 4 Momo steering wheel

Pioneer single din radio and speakers all around
oem single din pocket
Oem STi 6spd knob and boot

Oem STi ebrake

Zealous carpet

Zealous door fabric kit

Zealous extended armrest cover

ECS STi pedal adapter

STi pedal covers
Euro WRX black/grey seats front/rear
STi intercooler spray button

LED dome/map lights

STi glovebox light

OEM trunk light (with LED :naughty:)
Grimmspeed replacement antenna


Repainted OEM Rally Blue Pearl in April 2012

Antenna delete

Trunk keyhole delete

Side mouldings delete

MRT highrise scoop

JDM 22b vents

JDM v6 grille with pink badge

Pink Hella horns

Crystal clear headlights with 4500k HID's

Amber corner lights 
Clear bumper lights
ebay fog covers, paint matched and installed with RallyTech stainless brackets,
NOW, JDM rainbow fog lights
OEM amber fender lights (LED)

Bumper vents repainted black
HTAutos v limited front lip

JDM smooth rear bumper

JDM rear spats

JDM tail lights (w/ LED reverse)

2004 STi BBS's powdercoated white, wrapped in 215/45/17 Hankook Ventus evo's now dipped Matte Gold
PINK Muteki sr48 extended open end lugs

-RallyTech stainless bolt kit w/ red washers
-fender braces
-jdm gc i/c spray button
-Peterson fluids catch can

swaps on swaps
1,962 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Before I took the car to paint (couple months after buying it), I threw almost every interior mod I had in.

Interior when I got her:

Took everything out

And the custom interior! :)

I was also finding and putting on every exterior mod I liked to get an idea of what I wanted on when it was all painted.

All stock:

Then I threw on the Bakemono carbon fiber high-rise hoodscoop, oem 22b vents, and the jdm grille:

Eventually decided to take the CF scoop off and buy an MRT high-rise to paint match.

I left my rear bumper with spats off until right before paint since my car was already like 5 different colors :lol: At this point I was driving it to my college class and well, people stared.

Then I took it to paint! As far as body work it had rear quarter rust repaired, and the door mouldings, antenna, and trunk key hole shaved. All badging and the subaru murals were removed :)

swaps on swaps
1,962 Posts
Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Some pics of the repair/repaint; have to say for a while I was torn on what blue to repaint this car. I even considered the steel blue mica for a little bit, but knew that rally blue pearl was always the color subie I wanted. Now every time I look at the paint I can't help but smile.

All taken apart

Friend taught me how to roll the fenders; fronts were rolled before they took it in :)

Being repaired/primed:

Friend at the shop rolled the rears before the primer went on:


And some pics with the fresh paint; lancer belongs to my girlfriend.


2001 Coupe
1,256 Posts
Wow. Diving in with body and paint work. Too intimidating for me so I envy those with the balls to take sand paper to the old paint. Good luck with the rest.

swaps on swaps
1,962 Posts
Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
haven't updated this in a while, been pretty busy with work. I've gotten quite a few things done on the car as well though:

-installed P1 cluster
-P1 wheels are balanced and ready to go on
-replaced rusty old fuel filler neck
-new rotors are painted; calipers will be painted when I put them on
-replaced old fartcan exhaust with obx catback

Old fuel filler neck next to the new one, I couldn't believe how rusty it was, the piece that went to the lines was completely gone!

Anddd that is my glove poking through...

painted new rotors, shoes and calipers:

and goodbye to the fart can exhaust!

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