Project Cars

Project GD STI: Getting More Power with Precision Turbo and Cobb Tuning! Part - 1

by Mike Kojima

Our STI has been driving around as a daily for two years now with all of the typical bolt ons.  It has been reliable at 318 whp with good driveability and fuel economy on regular pump gas, in other words a hassle free car that is very easy to live with.  Of course if good was enough, more is better and we could not leave good enough alone.


Project GD STI - Checking Out The Development of KW's New 3-Way Adjustable Clubsport Coilovers

By Mike Kojima

A few months ago we visited KW Suspensions' factory in Germany to learn about the development of  their new 3-way adjustable Clubsport coilovers.  We feel that the 3-way Clubsport is a pivotal product for KW.  It promises the flexibility in tuning of expensive elite Motorsports only shocks that are priced out of reach of most enthusiasts in a package that is 50% less than the custom uber dampers.


MotoIQ Project Subaru STI

Project GD STI- Improving the Fuel System with Injector Dynamics and Other Details

By Mike Kojima

When we had last left off on Project STI's engine, we had just upgraded the cooling system in anticipation of another round of tuning.  What was supposed to be just some routine installation of a few parts to get a little more power ended up being something a lot more complicated, time consuming and involved.


Project GD STI- Getting it Slowed Down with Stoptech

By Mike Kojima

The Subaru GD STI comes with pretty good brakes from the factory, big Brembo 4 piston front and 2 piston rear calipers squeeze big vented rotors. In other words the stock brakes are already quite good, what would have been state of the art just a few years ago. This means we would have to be careful when it comes to modding them, it is easy to mess things up and actually do worse than stock with a poorly engineered brake upgrade.  So why would we want to change them out with something else?  The main reason is that since our car is going to see some occasional track use, we want to upgrade our brakes so we can drive our car to the track for an event without the hassle of having to switch pads at the track.  The big brakes will allow us to run at speed on a streetable brake pad.  Bigger more powerful brakes will also be easier to modulate. The third reason is admittedly that big brakes just plain look cool! We went with Stoptech as the brake system of choice for their combination of daily driveability and track performance.  We selected Stoptech's Trophy STR big brake kit.


Project GD STI- Keeping Cool with Greddy and Koyo!

By Mike Kojima

At this stage in the modding of Project STI's engine, it is time for us to lay down some base parts to support our plans for more power later.  One of the weak points of the Subaru intake tract is its top mount intercooler or interheater as some call it.  It is pretty ineffective at cooling the charge air as it sits in a heat chimney right over the engine.  It is fed by a large scoop but air only flows through it at speed.  This makes for irregular intercooler effectiveness.  The top mount intercooler is a legacy of the car's rally heritage where the Subaru engineers wanted to move the intercooler out of harms way.  Interestingly enough the last generations of Subaru's WRC car had front mounts.


Project GD STI- Keeping Cool and Protected with 3M Crystalline Tint and Protective Film

By Mike Kojima

Project GD STI is a daily driver that we put a lot of miles on, from driving to our daily appointments, to the office and to the track on the weekends. Just in case you didnt know this, Southern California is a hot area, desert really, with a lot of sun exposure and all tracks around here are in the pit of the earth, really in the desert!


Tested: RS-R's Ran-Up Oil Treatment, Power in a Bottle

By Mike Kojima

"Mike, MotoIQ has to try our Ran-Up oil treatment", RS-R's John Masuda would say to me every time I saw him over the past year.  "It gives you 5-12 more whp in our testing and I really want you to try it".  Yeah right I would think.  Sounds too good to be true.


Project GD Subaru STI Part Three- Making More Power with Greddy and Cobb Tuning

By Mike Kojima

When we last left off, we had turned our STI into a G machine without giving up much daily driving comfort.  Now it was time for us to turn our attention to the engine.  The GD STI really responds to very basic tuning.

Project GD Subaru STI Part Two- Performance Suspension, Wheels and Tires

By Mike Kojima

In the last installment of Project GD Subaru STI, we set about replacing our car's worn out bushings, ball joints and tie rods with some trick stuff from Whiteline.  We also reduced the anti geometry in our front suspension and raised our front roll center while making everything fully camber adjustable.  For this edition we will finish our suspension by adding some high performance KW Clubsport coilovers, some chassis reinforcement and some Advan wheels with sticky Falken 615K tires.


Project GD Subaru STI Part One- Rebuilding the Suspension

By Mike Kojima

The GD Subaru STI is an iconic tuner car.  The platform is highly developed and can easily generate supercar like performance for a really low price.  It is a well developed platform which has been raced in nearly every form from road racing to rally. A lot of development means that there are plenty of high quality parts available off the shelf for the car making it an exciting candidate for project car greatness.


Project WRX STI Brake System Upgrade

Project Subaru WRX STi Part 4: Brake System Upgrades

By Mike Kojima

The old engineers joke that “speed doesn’t kill, rapid deceleration does” applies to all vehicles capable of attaining dangerous velocities.  Since we have been concentrating on improving project STi’s acceleration and handling, we have definitely achieved the ability to reach deadly velocity on the track.  In our first foray onto the grounds of Willow Springs raceway we noted that perhaps we were starting to drive beyond the capabilities of the stock brakes due to the higher speeds that we were able to attain on the straights.

To read the rest about Project Subaru WRX STI click here!


MotoIQ Project Subaru WRX STi

Project Subaru WRX STi Part 3: Streetable Track Worthy Suspension

By Mike Kojima

In our last segment of Project Subaru WRX STi we tackled the car’s weakest area, its handling, and made significant improvements by installing Whiteline’s basic handling pack suspension kit. Although we were very favorably impressed with the kit’s enhancement of Project STi, we needed more. We wanted more than just a better handling car; we wanted one that had the potential to put the hurt on the competition in time attack events as well as a decent street ride because this car also serves as a daily driver.

To see the other articles in this series, click here!


Project STi Part 2, We test and witness the birth of Our Suspension System

By Mike Kojima

When researching suspension modifications for the STi, we came upon the name of the Australian company Whiteline several times and when studying their website found quite a few unique and innovative suspension products available for the STi and many other cars as well. With this information in hand, we sought them out at the SEMA show and met Jim Gurieff, Whiteline’s General Director. Over Dinner we had quite an interesting conversation on the technical aspects of suspension turning.


Project Subaru STi: Part One 

In this project we are going to improve on the STi's strong point, acquiring more torque and power but still keeping it street and road race friendly.  A lot of attention will be given the cars weak points, handling and braking.  Project STi's goals will be to be able to keep its easy streetability while being able to rip the ¼mile in the 11's in drag racing while winning a Time Attack on a road course, opposing yet possible goals.


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