I’ve never really been a fan of the STi Ver. 9. I found the styling of the front grill to be unnecessary and an eyesore in general. But it is the last of the STis to use the second generation Impreza chassis, so it is deserving of some mention.
This particular example was handled by After12 motorsports, a company that specializes in body kits and internal modifications. There’s a very extensive list of modifications done to this car, and to be frank the only thing stock about the engine is the metal block.
First impressions of the car are pretty normal. There have been subtle improvements to the exterior, like a new WRC front bumper, smaller carbon-fibre reinforced polymer wing mirrors and a Monster CFRP hood. The lights have been changed out for a set of CATZ HID lamps, to help light the way for night time touge runs and to persuade people to get out of your way when you’re blasting down the highway. The stock STi wheels have been swapped out for a set of gold Rays RE30 18” wheels, which help to show off the well-worn discs and calipers.
Under the hood, the owner went to work on replacing almost every single component on the engine. What some STi owners suffer from is their pistons and conrods breaking when the engines are tuned and highly stressed. This is rectified through the use of forged pistons and conrods in order to withstand the increased pressure of a high tune setup, though this is a tradeoff as there is also more wear to the cylinder walls and increased blowby, but ultimately these are things you can accept in pursuit of performance. The engine bearing has been swapped out for a set from ACL to reduce friction.
To keep the fuel flowing, the owner installed a SARD pump and rail set in tandem with a Tomei fuel regulator. Other Tomei parts include valve springs, head gaskets and extractors.
The owner installed a SYMS enlarged rear differential cover. This serves two purposes – the first is to store more fluid in the differential in order to promote better cooling, and the second is to increase the life of the differential. While this serves no instant performance increase, it helps to preserve the components integrity when subject to heavy abuse.
Also on the cooling front is a Blitz Racing LM Radiator, Blitz front mount intercooler and a Trust 13 row engine oil cooler. All three work in harmony to keep the engine running at optimal temperatures and maintain a dense air charge.
Engine and gearbox mountings have been changed to withstand the additional power and torque, as is to be expected lest you wish to watch your gearbox bouncing on the road in your rear view mirror as you go to wide open throttle.
On the handling side, Cusco features prominently in the form of adjustable suspension, struts, anti roll bars and lower arms. The owner also decided to install a set of Hardrace adjustable trailing arms to give more solid feedback and response.
The interior modifications have been kept to a minimum, focusing more on function than form. The seats have been swapped out for Recaro SPG full buckets, and the steering wheel and shifter have been changed to PRODRIVE equivalents. Following an After12 ECU reflash, the owner also installed an After12 OBDII reader to keep tabs on the engine management.
But of course, sometimes you just want to take a slow drive and listen to some good music. For this purpose, the stock unit was swapped out for an Alpine CDA-9885 head unit, which leads to a McIntosh MC431 amplifier, and an extra 12” Helix subwoofer was added because you can never have enough bass.
This STi Version 9 definitely makes for a good sleeper car. Sure, in stock form the Scooby is already a formidable opponent, but would-be challengers should approach this with apprehension.
Hyperfacts! Car – Subaru Impreza WRX STi Version 9 Engine Mods – Forged pistons, forged conrods, ACL Race engine bearings, Tomei PROCAM, Tomei valve spring, Tomei head gasket, Tomei regulator, Tomei extractor, Trust PE-TiR exhaust system, A12 head port polished, A12 braided fuel hose, A12 stainless steel downpipe, SARD fuel pump, SARD fuel rail, SARD radiator spare tank cap, Blitz Racing LM radiator, Blitz radiator silicone hose, Blitz Front Mount intercooler with piping, Blitz Sonic Power intake, APS turbo intake, Zerosports engine oil cap, Zerosports Radiator Diversion plate, Trust 13row oil cooler, Beatrush gearbox mounting, Eifel Brake pump cover, Eifel Clutch pump cap, STi reinforced engine mounting Electronics – After12 ECU Reflash Transmission – SYMS enlarged rear differential housing Brakes – Project U SBC Pro front rotor, Project U SBC rear rotor, STi braided brake hose Suspension & Chassis – Cusco 2E adjustable suspension with Econ, Cusco front strut, Cusco front ARB, Cusco rear ARB, Cusco front lower arm bar, Cusco rear lower arm bar, Do Luck room bar, J speed fender bar, Dog Fight Pro Carbon rear strut, Hardrace Adjustable Trailing Arm set Wheels – Rays RE30 18×8.5 Interior Mod – Recaro Bucket Seats, PRODRIVE steering and shift knob, After12 OBD-II readout, Alpine CDA-9885 head unit, McIntosh MC431 amplifier, 12” Helix Subwoofer Exterior Mod – WRC Front Bumper, CFRP wing mirror, Monster CFRP hood, CATZ HID