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Discussion Starter #1
Hey everyone, just looking to get some honest feedback on the sti for my use case. I think Ive done everything I could reading wise on the EJ257 as well as the stronger points of the car (transmission, chassis, raw feeling). I do understand that the 2019+ STIs do get the goodies of the Type RA and have read some positive feedback about those engines. So to cut back to the point I currently daily a mk7 gti and also have an NA miata for fun. As much as I love the current set up, the goal is to downsize to 1 car. Have been looking at something thats just livable enough to be a DD that can also live up to the fun of bashing some back roads most weekends and maybe even an occasional autocross. While the GTI is a great daily, its easy to admit ive been really let down by just how disconnected the car feels from an engagement standpoint. With that out of the way, really no interest in a standard wrx and have been eyeing up the STI, Type R, and new BRZ. Would honestly keep the stock tune and maybe just toss on an exhaust along with upgrading the suspension/wheels/tires. With all that said, was looking to see how these stock tuned 2019+ STIs hold up mostly highway daily driving (stopped driving like a dickhead long ago and save that for weekend backroad driving), ALOT of sprited driving in the warmer months and possible autocrossing it as i mentioned earlier. Appreciate all the feedback and help
 

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My current daily is a MK7.5 GTI with bolt ons but still on the stock software. Picked up my new 2020 STI last month as my weekend toy. Unfortunately don’t have much feedback to report on the STI because the weather has been so bad I haven’t been able to take it out to enjoy it. Totally agree with you on how the GTI’s feel a bit disconnected, but overall has been a fantastic vehicle. I have driven mine hard but maintain it with an open checkbook.

The STI is on another level in terms of connectedness and driver feedback. Steering feel is so much more alive on the STI. It genuinely feels like an event driving the STI. Reliability was a concern of mine too given some of the EJ’s stories you read. I unfortunately have little to report on that front since my time with my STI has been rather brief. I also feel like a massive portion of the STI community tunes and modifies their cars, in addition to the younger kids that drive STI’s that have no understanding of mechanical limits of things. You will always hear more horror stories on Internet forums than not. I think for the most part as long as the EJ is maintained properly it should prove to be plenty reliable. The MK7 generation powertrain is pretty stout and there are still plenty of stories regarding people blowing motors that have been tuned. If you’re that concerned (like I was) get something with as much powertrain warranty as you can and don’t do anything software related.

The STI seems perfectly suited to be a daily if that’s what you’re looking for as well. Plenty of interior room, huge trunk, and the suspension soaks up the bumps pretty well considering the nature of the car. Fuel economy will not be on par with the GTI though. MK7’s in my opinion return some pretty impressive numbers given the level of performance. The driving experiences don’t even come close though. The STI is where it’s at.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
My current daily is a MK7.5 GTI with bolt ons but still on the stock software. Picked up my new 2020 STI last month as my weekend toy. Unfortunately don’t have much feedback to report on the STI because the weather has been so bad I haven’t been able to take it out to enjoy it. Totally agree with you on how the GTI’s feel a bit disconnected, but overall has been a fantastic vehicle. I have driven mine hard but maintain it with an open checkbook.

The STI is on another level in terms of connectedness and driver feedback. Steering feel is so much more alive on the STI. It genuinely feels like an event driving the STI. Reliability was a concern of mine too given some of the EJ’s stories you read. I unfortunately have little to report on that front since my time with my STI has been rather brief. I also feel like a massive portion of the STI community tunes and modifies their cars, in addition to the younger kids that drive STI’s that have no understanding of mechanical limits of things. You will always hear more horror stories on Internet forums than not. I think for the most part as long as the EJ is maintained properly it should prove to be plenty reliable. The MK7 generation powertrain is pretty stout and there are still plenty of stories regarding people blowing motors that have been tuned. If you’re that concerned (like I was) get something with as much powertrain warranty as you can and don’t do anything software related.

The STI seems perfectly suited to be a daily if that’s what you’re looking for as well. Plenty of interior room, huge trunk, and the suspension soaks up the bumps pretty well considering the nature of the car. Fuel economy will not be on par with the GTI though. MK7’s in my opinion return some pretty impressive numbers given the level of performance. The driving experiences don’t even come close though. The STI is where it’s at.
Damn man thats one hell of a stable! Glad someone else can share the sentiment of the GTI. It really is a fantastic car from top to bottom, especially the efficiency and what it does. Clutch and overall manual especially though is a whole different world compared to the miata (i know i know it is the king of cheap thrills). Even my old man's S3 and a Golf R I test drove, both with the brilliant DSG, felt even less engaging. I have test driven a 2016 STI and couldnt agree more than it feels much more connected and alive. The fuel economy for a 4 banger is hilariously shitty though but not one of my bigger concerns. Appreciate the feedback man!
 

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Don't 19+ STIs have Type RA exhausts? Some people think my exhausts were modded when they weren't, so you might not even need to buy new exhausts. Get yourself an AOS/catch can (the ones with both a PCV port and rocker cover ports, some only have one for the PCV), there's a shitload of oil pooling in the intercooler especially when you run them hard. Don't want that stuff in your combustion chamber when you're hitting WOT. The stock 19" wheels are ridiculously heavy (13kg vs 10kg for the MY15-18 18" BBS), get rid of them
 

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So I've owned a 2015 Scion FRS (86)

That isn't not a great only car. Yes it's fun on back roads etc....but it lacks TQ in the city and it's pretty loud etc....so I would only suggest that car as a second car, or if your really young.

~

The STI as a everyday car.
Well for me, my wife loves it, and my 3 year old seems to also love it and none of them ever complain about the ride, comfort or noise.

As a driver though, if you drive a lot, it does get tiring at some points. This is mostly due to harder seats and having to use the clutch.

The only gripe I really have with mine as a daily (though technically i don't drive it in the winter and use an accord for winter haha) is the sound system and stock exhaust.

The stock sound systems is complete garbage and makes music unenjoyable after the honey moon phase of the car leaves you. So I highly suggest either getting the Harmon Audio package, or if you want the BASE Sti, either go aftermarket or upgrade the tweeters and speakers using the Kicker OEM package. There is also a sub(which comes with a amp) which will complete the sound but, I don't have it yet so not sure how it will be. Even with the kicker tweeters and speakers, the sound becomes more clear, but lacks bass. Hence why I'm considering the sub...though I'm debating cause of weight/don't like heavy bass haha. (OF COURSE, THIS IS IF YOU EVEN CARE about the audui in the car...if not than just do the tweeters and/or speakers and your good)

Regarding the stock exhausts. It drones. That alone makes me hate it. Visuaully it's nice, but the drone is a killer for me so I highly suggest switching to a Fujitsubo exhaust. Zero drone, and mature adult sound levels which will give it that OEM+ sound.
 

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STI's don't feel disconnected, but they are not light and nimble. My GD feel as if you are operating a machine, a machine that does exactly what you ask of it. Kind of point and shoot - or apply power carefully till you feel slip . . . but that car became a nimble machine at highway speeds. My 2020 feels more like a car. Less heavy, less engaging, but it handles impressively well. I have no issues driving the car hard.


Get yourself an AOS/catch can (the ones with both a PCV port and rocker cover ports, some only have one for the PCV), there's a shitload of oil pooling in the intercooler especially when you run them hard.
There shouldn't be oil in the inter-cooler in a low mileage unless you run em hard.

The stock 19" wheels are ridiculously heavy (13kg vs 10kg for the MY15-18 18" BBS), get rid of them
Aren't the tire diameters the same with a 18" and 19" wheel - which means to some extent you are trading wheel weight for tire weight?. Pretty sure the 19's contribute to my above handling statement. But I am interested in weight reduction, especially rotating mass.
 

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The horror stories are just that. Don't make the mistake of swinging your intellectual pendulum the other direction and think that only a tiny fraction of these cars have problems though. I would strongly suggest buying a brand new one.

See: Prospective STI Owner with Reliability Question (UPDATE)

Edit: I wanted to add this sentiment too. I bought my 2016 used in dec with around 40k on it. Since I have owned this car I have spent more time physically fixing + researching how to fix this car than I have enjoying it. This is fact, not exaggeration or metaphor. I have an overall highly dissatisfied position on the car and look forward to selling it. I hear this is the risk when you buy used but I've never encountered a single vehicle that is this troubling this early on. Good luck in your search!
 

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honestly if you want a fun car that can handle some autocrosses the sti will be wonderful. I dont own a va chassis but have driven plenty of them. they are very responsive on steering and really feel lighter than they actually are. you really cant go wrong with them.

i'd always suggest doing a quality AOS, the killer b oil pickup and baffle and the cylinder 4 cooling mod. these shouldnt hurt warranty and will be good for reliability. then as far as any other mods, id personally start with suspension and move up from there to anything else you may want. they are incredibly fun to autocross and track.
 

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Got a new ‘20 STI in July ‘20 and put 7k miles on it DD. Excellent analog performance car. Be sure to get the Short Throw Shifter option. The Harmon Kardon is a decent stereo. Go for it.
 

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2019 STI Daily Driven for 2 years w/32K miles on it with zero problems. Completely stock and it's a fun street vehicle. Not the fastest car, but more than enough to enjoy it on the streets and the weekend twisty's.

I'm actually content with it in stock form and I'm not really sure what I'd change, maybe a better stereo, but that's not even a big deal to me as I listen to podcasts most of the time. Visually, the Wing is often an item that some people don't like. I also think the front bumper seems to be a bit high off the ground, again visually, just doesn't look good to me when looking at the car head on. The front profile of lowered STIs look so much better. I like the side profile, especially with the Wing.
 

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It's been my daily for 5k miles and it has been great. The stock exhaust is way too quiet and the radio is awful. My other vehicle is an MDX and it becomes super obvious how bad the radio is when compared to ELS. But other than that if you don't mind rowing gears and adding a bit of oil every few thousand miles, it's fantastic.
 

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Just picked up 2020 STI two weeks ago. I had a new MK7 GTI two door (2016) with manual transmission. The manual really makes both cars fun to drive. The Vdub had the power down low with quick spool, but was done power wise past 4800-5000 rpms. It had a piggyback, catless dp, and big IC on it for mods. The STI is way nicer imo interior and exterior wise. A lot more performance goodies in the awd, dccd, brembos, and handling. A base GTI can be bought for easy 10k less than STI. Not really a direct comparison outside of the fun to drive factor.
 
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i'd always suggest doing a quality AOS, the killer b oil pickup and baffle and the cylinder 4 cooling mod. these shouldnt hurt warranty
the second they see mods it can open up a whole can or worms, and can become an excuse for a dealer to fight over it . . . especially if your ever really need it . . . So, you were modding to race eh? Why were you low on oil? Who took that pan off, were they competent, who installed these stupid hoses, no wonder you overheated . . . if you value your warranty don't give em any excuse to question its validity . . .

Out of warranty or really aren't concerned - whole different thing . . .

ADDED: In fact I can't think of a better excuse to deny warranty on a car that has a cylinder 4 issue than having the the cooling to it moddifed !
 

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There shouldn't be oil in the inter-cooler in a low mileage unless you run em hard.
If he's running autoX then he's probably gonna run it hard, along with all that oil sloshing around in the engine creating extra vapours

Aren't the tire diameters the same with a 18" and 19" wheel - which means to some extent you are trading wheel weight for tire weight?. Pretty sure the 19's contribute to my above handling statement. But I am interested in weight reduction, especially rotating mass.
245/40ZR18 and 245/35ZR19 Michelin PS4s both weigh 23lbs according to Tirerack. Lower profile tyres probably need more steel to support the car, so they don't necessarily weigh less. You are also distributing the weight of the tyres (even just slightly) closer to the centre
 

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the second they see mods it can open up a whole can or worms, and can become an excuse for a dealer to fight over it . . . especially if your ever really need it . . . So, you were modding to race eh? Why were you low on oil? Who took that pan off, were they competent, who installed these stupid hoses, no wonder you overheated . . . if you value your warranty don't give em any excuse to question its validity . . .

Out of warranty or really aren't concerned - whole different thing . . .

ADDED: In fact I can't think of a better excuse to deny warranty on a car that has a cylinder 4 issue than having the the cooling to it moddifed !
im not sure if this pertains nationwide. But in va under the moss magnson act, unless they can show the part added caused the issue they can’t void the warranty. So for example if you added a full suspension and the engine blew, it would still be covered. That may vary state to state though.
 

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im not sure if this pertains nationwide. But in va under the moss magnson act, unless they can show the part added caused the issue they can’t void the warranty. So for example if you added a full suspension and the engine blew, it would still be covered. That may vary state to state though.
I don't believe it varies. It's all about how much you are willing to fight and how long you are willing to wait for repairs. For example, I daily my sti and to have to wait for weeks and months of back and forth figting would simply be unacceptable but ymmv 🙃
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thank you everyone so far for the feedback! Lot of good takeaways from this thread. Im ridiculously torn between the type r and sti after being fortunate enough to drive the civic this past weekend. Tomorrow ill be hopping back into the sti for a test drive so getting to compare these back to back should be fun. Bonus: the dynamics of the type r straight up embarassed my GTI lol
 

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But in va under the moss magnson act, unless they can show the part added caused the issue they can’t void the warranty. So for example if you added a full suspension and the engine blew, it would still be covered. That may vary state to state though.
Technically and legally true. But we were refferrencing engine components and not insignificant installs, so they have have some basis to begin with. The real issue though is that if they want to deny work, it can be a lengthy problematic process that can leave an owner with a loan and no car for a long period . . . even if you win.
 
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Technically and legally true. But we were refferrencing engine components and not insignificant installs, so they have have some basis to begin with. The real issue though is that if they want to deny work, it can be a lengthy problematic process that can leave an owner with a loan and no car for a long period . . . even if you win.

Exactly. And even though they say catbacks are permitted under warranty I wouldnt put it past any dealer or for SoA to make your life hell....
 

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Thank you everyone so far for the feedback! Lot of good takeaways from this thread. Im ridiculously torn between the type r and sti after being fortunate enough to drive the civic this past weekend. Tomorrow ill be hopping back into the sti for a test drive so getting to compare these back to back should be fun. Bonus: the dynamics of the type r straight up embarassed my GTI lol
I looked at the Type R, but I never pay retail (or close) for any new car. Low inventory and the fact most Honda dealers treat their Type R’s like they are McLaren status cut that one off my list. Plus once modded the fwd platform is meh (been there done that srt4/gti) and traction in lower gears goes bye bye. Awd is where it is at imo on the street. Best of luck on sorting that out for yourself. Curious what you decide on?
 
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