MY99 Type-R - the ongoing project


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Hey Lads

After 6 years of Subaru (painful at times) ownership, and my 4 years of lurking around here, I thought it was about time to end procrastinating and start my own thread...

Owning a 2 door classic Impreza has always been my dream since I was a teenage boy actively involved in rallying and being a huge fan of both Colin McRae and Richard Burns...
It took me quite along time to realise this dream and mainly thanks to the lads from Irish Subaru Drivers Club (ISDC), I finally got one of these really special cars.

I bought the 99 Type-R ver5 from the ISDC member (hens) in December 2008. He again got it only 1 year before from another ISDC member (Mike), who was also the first Irish owner.
I managed somehow tracking my car's history back until it was imported from Japan. A guy from the UK, Ewan who was a RAF soldier stationed in Cyprus, had it imported for himself and then shipped back to the UK after his mission in Cyprus had ended. In result the car has almost entirely been used in dry conditions and spent in the UK only a couple of months, before being exported again to Ireland. This I'm sure had a big impact on its rust-free condition to this day.

Here are some pictures I received from Ewan:

Right before leaving Japan-land, being exposed for sale...

In hot and dry Cyprus climate:




in the UK with brand new 18" wheels. The car was then fitted with Apexi FC ECU and remapped for UK fuel by Andy Forest.


and finally on Irish soil after being imported by Mike...



The car was completely stock and the modifications started only after she landed in Ireland.
I bought her with 54k miles on the clock. The mods were as follows:

-V6 front lip
-HDI Hybrid GT front mount intercooler
-DBA grooved front discs
-braided brake hoses
-18" lightweight rota wheels with lightened studs
-RCM induction kit
-cusco decat downpipe
-hayward and scott back box
-hks SQQV dumpvalve
-lightened flywheel
-apexi ecu and power commander
-remapped for irish crappy fuel by Martin Treacey from Westward Engineering

The engine has had a rebuilt only 4k miles before I bought it because of the bottom end failure. As it will turn out, the rebuild (with bills for over €4k ) was crap and the engine will have packed up on me with a bottom end failure again.

My first picture after bringing the car home... I felt like I was on cloud9 for a long time!


The car really impressed me with it's handling capabilities, even if it still ran on stock suspension.




Unfortunately only after 6 months of ownership, the 2nd gear in DCCD gearbox has gone, so I had to get a new one, I found a gearbox from Type-R v6 with a very little milage from Mikee Singh on 22B forums. For some reason the original gearbox had an older 752 casing, so the new replacement was much better as with stronger 754 casing and additionally it came with a front LSD diff... my first upgrade! :)

To be continued


Type RA Member
I drove the car with no issues again and then I started modifying it bit by bit.
First I removed the inlet manifold, which paint started flaking and resprayed it in red with the hi-temp paint - the colour didn't turn out as it meant to, but still I was happy enough with the final result. I got a silicon turbo inlet, 2 oil catch tanks, and put it all back together.



I also ordered Harvey Smith's exhaust manifold with matched up-pipe. To my surprise that made the turbo spool 500rpm earlier. With a nippy stock VF28 turbo the car was very responsive and the EJ20 revved really quick.


The car was also remapped first time by the late Simon from JGM, which really made a difference. The car was running excellent. The Apexi ECU has crapped itself, so it's been replaced with standard ECU with Ecutek licence.


Type RA Member
I didn't have to wait long for my bad luck to kick in again because only a year after owning the car, a woman reversed into it while parking at work :/


Again a new wing, corner light.. all's good again and paid by the woman's insurance..

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Type RA Member

Until.. 6 months later on the way to NCT (irish MOT).. the engine started knocking!!! funnily enough the car passed NCT with a knocking engine lol

At this stage I just parked it up and had thoughts about burning it down to the ground to be honest.
I cared about it like a baby. Engine was serviced every 4k miles with Silkolene Pro S oil, never pushed hard from cold, and always cooled down properly. I reckon the rebuild that the previous owner did on it only 10k miles earlier wasn't in fact done properly…

Anyways, I left the car standing in a garage for a couple of months until I decided to buy the EJ22 build from JPTypeRA, who just started breaking his awesome Type-RA Limited.
I took the entire engine with few other suspension bits like Whiteline antirollbars, ALK (not fitted yet) Sparco steering wheel Defi gauges and other small bits and pieces.


Type RA Member
Having the engine outside the car, I decided to fit a Cosworth baffle plate for a better oil protection. Quickly delivered by Mark from Lateral Performance :thumb


a brand new Exedy PinkBox clutch


The old engine out!


which then landed in a Tesco trolley in my room (still sitting there to this day, as I couldn't find time to dismantle it and to see what damage actually happened inside LOL )



Type RA Member
New engine with some shiny bits like FueLab fuel pressure regulator, Apexi Air filter and Greddy cooling radiator plate


Engine sorted, now only to keep it safe a full set of Defis went in.. with a Sparco steering wheel to give it a bit of rally feel inside ;)



Defi in action:

And off it went to JGM again to tweak the map for a new engine. Compared to EJ20, the new EJ22 (2.35) isn't as happy revvy, but produces much more torque and the turbo spools earlier.


Type RA Member
Then it was time to do something with the suspension..

First the front and rear Whiteline ARBs got painted in red to stop the usual corrosion due crappy protection that Whiteline used on their products.
Joined by a set of Whiteline drop links.


The Cusco rear strutbar went in as well:


and of course a brand new set of BC BR coilovers. The only choice of coilovers, which is acceptable on Irish roads really.. plus they are really a good value for money.


Scooby sitting nice and low, but not too low:


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The car was ready for its first outing at Mondello on 2012 ISDC trackday.


A great picture (my favourite so far) in Mondello paddocks taken by JAMIE-TYPERV6 below:



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The engine was still running on a standard VF28 turbo, which on the 2.35cc engine was quite responsive, but running out of puff quickly.

It was then time to do something about it, so I chose VF48 and replaced standard injectors with Nismo 740cc, which had been sent over to Mark at Lateral Performance for cleaning and calibrating prior to installation.

I also replaced the 2.5 inch middle section with a complete crazy loud Kakimoto god help me 3 inch system.



And for the 3rd (and regrettably last) time ever it went to Simon to do some magic on the map. This time I upgraded the ECU to Alcatek with ALS and launch control (which will probably never be used)
The engine is running sweet on the current map with turbo max boost 1.5bar pulling quite nicely, but since local Maxol's E5 fuel has deteriorated, I have to remember to add Octan Booster to every tank of petrol.

The Kakimoto has a very raspy sound which I'm not a huge fan of to be honest... The antilag does the job though



Type RA Member
Maxol - the most visited place of Scooby owners :D


Time flew, and in October 2013 I decided to respray the entire car. I didnn't like the shade of blue it previously had, that sometimes fell into violet depending on the light, which can actually be seen on the pictures. I went for the 02C from Newage STi, which was a bit warmer and I think it's been a great choice.

The v6 splitter returned back again.



The paint job was done by a Liam Brennan in Cork again...
I'm very happy how it turned out.