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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

I am the happy owner of a 2004 Impreza RS. However, I have been wanting to have a bit more power in my car. Financially, I can't go above $6000, so I have been looking with a WRX that is a sort of "my loss is your gain" situation. I don't know too much about WRXes, so any advice or insights about the car I'm looking at would be appreciated!

I found a black 2002 wrx wagon for $4700. The price is a bit lower than the car is likely worth (based on what I've seen), but the owner is pricing it as the total amount that is the last payment on the car. The body of the car is in good shape, with one very small rust spot and a dent in the bumper that can likely be popped out. The car has 190k miles on the body, 130k on the motor (the engine blew as the prior owner took the car home and he had the dealer install a used motor at that point). The turbo has about 50k miles on it. It also has a clean carfax with no history of accidents.

Here is a list of modifications to the vehicle:

-Godspeed FMIC
-Godspeed Turbo Inlet Hose
-Mishimoto Aluminim Radiator
-ACR Works Front Strut Bar
-02 Sedan Front Conversion
-Raceland Coilovers
-New Tires
-Carbon Fiber 4" Hood Scoop
-Perrin Wheel Spacers
-DNA Motoring headers and Catless Uppipe
-Invidia Divorced Wastegate Downpipe
-SRS Catback
-Lightweight Underdrive Pulley (not on car)
-JNP Stage 2 Fuel Pump
-Megan Racing Short Throw Shifter (not on car)
-Tinted Windows
-diamond plated floor mats
-STI Rear Strut Bar

PROBLEMS: It needs a new passenger front axle.

So my questions are as follows:

-In your opinion, should I buy this car?
-How much does it cost to replace a passenger front axle? (expensive or straightforward at a shop?)
-Given the replaced motor, what do I need to worry about in the '02 WRX engine as it passes 130k miles?

Any thoughts would be VERY MUCH appreciated!

Thanks.
 

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I kill threads!
2000 Ver 6 STI - 1996 Gravel Express
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3,749 Posts
Did the guy buy like the cheapest, most ghetto parts to stick on the car? I'd end up blowing $4k just to get that junk off the car. Only worthwhile parts is the Mishimoto radiator and STI strut bar.

I fear that if he's willing to put that ebay junk on the car, he's willing to drive that car without a tune also. I personally would not touch it. It's your money so, it's really up to you.
 

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I kill threads!
2000 Ver 6 STI - 1996 Gravel Express
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3,749 Posts
Ya, pretty much. If the guy had all the original parts still, I wouldn't be so bothered by it, but I'm sure he sold all that stuff off.

I'm fine with ebay stuff on an old N/A car, but I'd never put it on a turbo car.
 

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^Agreed with above. When I saw Godspeed, I stopped reading and already said "no" in my head. That means I didn't make it past the first mod on that list. If you REALLY need to get this car, and your mind is SET on it, then make sure it is properly tuned at a minimum.

I also noticed that there was no engine management listed. This is fine, as long as he is using opensource tuning, which he might not list under "parts". This also means it is not AP tuned, so you will have to learn opensource or buy an AP.

Sounds like a problem car.
 

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The subaru of many acronyms
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so only thing wrong was a front cv axle ~$50 if you DIY, if you dont think/want to do a cv axle yourself i wouldnt buy a car like this.
 

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2011 Legacy 2.5i Limited
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219 Posts
-Godspeed FMIC
-Godspeed Turbo Inlet Hose
-Mishimoto Aluminim Radiator
-ACR Works Front Strut Bar
-02 Sedan Front Conversion
-Raceland Coilovers
-New Tires
-Carbon Fiber 4" Hood Scoop
-Perrin Wheel Spacers
-DNA Motoring headers and Catless Uppipe
-Invidia Divorced Wastegate Downpipe
-SRS Catback
-Lightweight Underdrive Pulley (not on car)
-JNP Stage 2 Fuel Pump
-Megan Racing Short Throw Shifter (not on car)
-Tinted Windows
-diamond plated floor mats
-STI Rear Strut Bar
Looking carefully at the list, the Godspeed FMIC, Godspeed Turbo Inlet Hose, the ACR Works Front Strut Bar, DNA Motoring headers, Catless Uppipe and Raceland Coilovers are the Ebay parts everyone dislikes. True, many of those you don't want on your car, but some kinds of Ebay parts aren't that awful.

-Ebay FMIC kits, are used here/there because they work just fine
-Headers, are often ebay bought. I'd swap those out for OEM headers.
-Racelands, while controversial, are used a fair amount here. They aren't all terrible either, just not great quality stuff many want to spend on.
-Front and rear strut bars, are nice/rice, but dont cause performance defecits
-Inlet hose...not sure what to say of that.

So yeah, some of the parts were ghetto'd, but at least on those "mods," those are harmless, cute little mods that don't really affect the running of an EJ205. My question is, the quality of the maintenance history (probably not too well considering the budget the car seems to be run on) and how hard the previous owner drove it...
 

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2 broken subarus...
'00 Subaru Impreza OBS
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321 Posts
If you know what you're doing with eBay parts, I.e. what to look for and what to avoid, you should be just fine. I have eBay headers on my wrx, and am I expecting Perrin or full race - like quality? Hell no. That's why these are ~$100 and full race is ~1.1k...

The only things to really worry about on this mod list is the coilovers, wheel spacers, under drive pulley, fuel pump, front mount, floor mats, and whether or not the PO ran without a tune. Maybe the headers. To me, the stuff the PO put on the car isn't major, and can be replaced for cheap. If he had eBay turbo, eBay internals, then I'd run away screaming, but the rest is a-ok. And the sedan front end is a big plus btw. I say for 4.7k it's worth a second look. Just don't expect much on the test drive because the front mount with a TD04L is going to have sooooooo much lag. Good luck man, but in the end, get what YOU want. Not what some person on the internet said to get.

Edit: why not post the ad? I'd like to see it, especially if it has pictures, just to gauge how good the car is....

Edit2: I have a lot of wrx stuff, so if you need parts, I can help you out. Especially seeing as I actually own an 02 wagon....
 

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its worth half the asking price....at best

$5k can buy you a bone stone wrx sedan or wagon, without all this cars history, and without the "add ons", which in the big picture, mean absolutely nothing. With your budget of $6k you can get a truly nice one. None of it is top notch stuff, it takes away from the value, and significantly limits the buying base IMHO
 

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DWAFTW
03 Silver WRX Wagon
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10,140 Posts
I say no. Too much stuff thrown on it. Also, that kind of eBay stuff is not as bad as it would be if he had an eBay turbo or something. I bought a used SRS cat back years ago for my WRX. It's held up remarkably well, and it actually sounds very nice. I get compliments on it very regularly, even from the muscle car guys.

But still with a 6k budget, a higher mileage stock(ish) one can be had. Just gotta be patient.
 

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I kill threads!
2000 Ver 6 STI - 1996 Gravel Express
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3,749 Posts
Quality mods increase the value to an enthusiast.
Crap mods decrease the value to an enthusiast.
Any mods decrease the value to normal consumers.

That's the way I see things. For me, quality mods means the person was willing to put the money into making their car nice. So they more than likely also paid to have it properly tuned.

This car screams to me that the owner simply didn't care. All they were doing was going for the look and sound, while doing it for as cheap as possible. I'd also like to see how they did this "02 sedan front" conversion.

For a normal consumer standpoint, any mods probably says to them that the car was driven hard. That or it was all just a backyard mechanic job and not properly done. I'd be worried about it just being randomly slapped together too. Not to mention the engine being replaced.
 
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