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Is it time to sell the subie??

1972 Views 14 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  AirTraffic
Okay, before you start flaming me and complaining... I know this is something probably asked a LOT and cannot really be answered. I am not looking for a concrete answer here... just opinions.

I am a young married guy in the military. I make "okay" money... but my wife is not working right now and is going to school. she drives an 07 murano we owe 6k on and has another year of warranty on it from the dealer.

I bought an 04 sti about 7-9 months ago while stationed in mississippi for 12,500. When I bought the car it had 117,xxx and the front bumper had paint peeling really bad. It had advan RS wheels, bald tires, and a really nice interior (all black leather and suede) the previous owner said he was going for an s203 replica.

After buying the car I threw on new rubber, repainted the bumper, and put on a limited lip on the trunk. Perrin exhaust and a cobb tuner. (I have the stock exhaust still) New spark plugs and had the car looked over by a dealer.

it now has 120,XXX and I am now stationed in north dakota. I owe 7,000 on the car right now and it blue books at 18,500... I am trying to decide if I should sell the car now while it is still worth something and try to get 17,500 or so out of it and buy a used tacoma... or drive the thing into the ground.

I do not drive it hard often, but I am nervous about impending doom.

I need opinions here guys, Please be constructive.

Not to mention I average 18-19mpg and can get 22-24 in an I4 M/T Tacoma
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This is EXACTLY how I got into my STi!

My 08 FJ I bought for a great deal June 2012. By doing all the mods myself I saved ~8K. I was able to sell it two weeks ago for dollar for dollar what I had into it (including the 4 oil changes, and ~$120 in diff, transfer case oil).

As an E5 in the Army, myself (Airborne Infantry), I can say that two car payments is tough. I'd also suggest if the wife is doing online courses maybe you can go to a one car family? I say sell the Subaru and pay off the Nissan. NO CAR PAYMENTS IS AWESOME! Then continue to make that "Subaru car payment" each month into a savings account for the year (while there's a warranty on the Nissan). At the end of the year you have enough down payment on a brand new vehicle for yourself and with a 7-year loan (with a 7 year warranty) you can have ~32K vehicle for ~400/mo.
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I am an E3 currently (Air Force ATC)

How should I go about selling it? I have had it on craigslist for a few months at 19000 and have had 0 calls or interest
Follow your gut.
Not trying to be a buzzkill, but the price is high. There are a few cars with less than half the miles going for the same price, and a few comparable cars for a couple thousand less.

Was the 90k service done by the previous owner? Or you?

Just some stuff to take into consideration.
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If you're fine with selling it go for it but 18k is steep. STI will always be there. I would list it right now and sell it when somebody offers you the price you want it for.
Bought for 12k and asking 19k with minimal work put into the car? Truthfully the car will probably sell for no more than you paid for it originally. If the car has been reliable and you like it, maybe keep it....unless you need a truck. Trucks aren't fun like an STi.
90k was done by previous owner. I know the sti is fun, my only worry is that the car cant have that much life left in it. I would hate for it to have the turbo go out or need the engine rebuilt in the next 2 years or so.
For the price you paid for the car VS what 04's in that shape are selling for(16500-18,000) than you actually still have a decent amount of equity in it to take up any depreciation over the next few years. And since you have only put 3,000 miles on it, I wouldnt expect that you drive it enough for it to depreciate any more...values on GD STI's in very good to excellent condition are pretty much stable and if anything will probably go up.

But then again you have 2 car payments, and you have to ask yourself if the minimal amount that you drive that STI per year is worth making the monthly payment or if your financial obligations are such that it would be more beneficial to cash in on the equity in it and sell it.
I live in the same area as you. (stationed in ND, usually means Forks, Fargo, or Minot.) Just so you know in the past couple years I have seen two unmodded 2004 STIs, with 5k miles on one and 11k miles on the other. 22k asking price on the one with fewer miles, and 19k asking price on the one with more miles. Those were within a two hour drives of us.

Your price is a little steep in comparison.

I would however stick with the advice of selling and saving.
The value of the car is not going anywhere anytime soon. As long as you keep it up it will probably always be worth $16-18K.

While not a "collectors" car it is a cult car. Every year there are fewer and fewer of them on the road because stupid teenagers buy them and destroy them. The 2004's have been selling for around 18K in good condition for the last 3 years or so. Dont let that factor into your decision.

If you need a cheaper car to operate and insure with similarly high resale value as the STi, then no other car comes closer than a 4cly Tacoma. I bought one new for 21,000, Drove it for 4 years and sold it for 17,500 with 72k miles on it.

Think about this one thing though: If you are planning on having kids any time soon and can keep the STi, I would much sooner stick my kids in the Subaru than in the Tacoma.

Good luck.
I can't imagine having two car payments without the wife working as an E3. I'm an E5, my wife works, and we get pretty insane BAH in the DC area, and that makes me "comfy" with two car payments.

I would say sell it and get something that isn't forced induction. Reliability will go up and potential maintenance costs will go down. Revisit the STI world when you add a stripe or two or lose a car payment.
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I am an E3 currently (Air Force ATC)

How should I go about selling it? I have had it on craigslist for a few months at 19000 and have had 0 calls or interest
I'm not trying to get into your business but as an E-7 with a working spouse having two car payments and a mortage isnt fun. If you are really worried about the STI's reliability you can have the motor checked out to see if its healthy. That could give you piece of mind. There are 04 STI's that are over 200,000 miles on original motors so that should tell you how strong the car can be.

On the flip side I know you don't like paying so much of your paycheck to banks. Doesn't leave you with much fun money or savings. The smartest choice financially is for you to sell the STI find a vehicle you can purchase without a car payment. It wont be pretty or fun but it will do the job until you can earn more. Buying a Tacoma and having a car payment there isn't going to change much for you. All you are doing is robbing peter to pay paul. I recomend selling, you'll have to adjust your price down so you can generate interest and sell it but its' really up to what's best for you and your family.

If you have any questions send me a PM. I'd be glad to help.
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Thank you everyone for the help. I am moving on base in 6 days and will clean the car up and start listing it online and maybe even ebay. Zdfrg I will take you up on that offer when I get home from work.
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