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Mileage: 76,000 Miles
Engine: 2.5-Liter EJ257 Turbocharged 4-Cylinder Engine
Transmission: 6-Speed Manual Transmission
Exterior color: Aspen White Exterior (51E)
Interior: Black / Blue STI Interior
Limited-Slip Differentials Front/Rear
Driver-Controlled Center Differential
STI Sport Steering Wheel
Cloth Bolstered Sport Seats w/ Blue Centers and STI Logos
6-Disc CD Changer / Tape Stereo System
Power Windows, Door Locks, Mirrors
Rear Center Arm Rest
Champiro SX2 225/45/17 Tires
Cobb AccessPort Stage 2 w/ Custom Tune
Cobb Boost Control Solenoid
Cobb/TurboXS Turbo-back exhaust
OEM Cats and Exhaust Included
Cusco Zero2E Coilovers, Rear Sway Bar, Camber Plates
Replica JDM STI Spec-C Front Lip
JDM STI Spec-C Carbon Fiber Rear Wing
Original U.S. STI Trunk and Rear Wing Included
JDM STI Spec-C Roof Vent
JDM STI Spec-C Mirror Covers
Rigorous Maintenance Schedule
Second Year STI
Original Owner STI
California / Colorado Car
In the early 1990s Subaru continued on the limited rally success of its prepped Legacy models with the newly minted WRX (World Rally Experimental) and a legacy was born (pun-intended). The WRX was based on the new GC generation Impreza and put into the hands of legendary World Rally Championship driver Colin McRae. Wearing the blue and yellow livery of certain cigarette brand, the pair became an iconic duo that cemented Subaru’s position in motorsport and McRae’s dominance of one of the greatest eras of World Rally Championship ever.
While the North American market finally got its first taste of the WRX in 2002, we had to wait another two years until the Peter Stevens (of McLaren F1 fame) designed ‘blobeye’ front facia generation to receive the vaunted STI version. Subaru Technica International dialed the car up to eleven with the addition of a front limited-slip differential, driver-controlled center differential, bulletproof Porsche-designed six-speed manual transmission, hydraulic steering rack, a bespoke STI interior, massive Brembo brakes, even more aerodynamic enhancements, and, of course, those gold BBS wheels. These cars won over drivers from the Fast and Furious crowd and serious exotic owners alike, and as a result most of them were driven hard. Finding a low-mileage 2005 blobeye STI, which received the modernized lug pattern and other updates, is extremely difficult and as a result, nostalgic collectors are beginning to take notice of these cars.
This one-owner blob-eye 2005 Subaru STI finished in Aspen White over the black and blue cloth STI interior is tastefully modified to the mature, ‘OEM-plus’ style spec that many original owners brought these cars up to. What makes this STI special is that it never fell through the cracks into the over-tuned, fast-and-furious, flavored vape crowd that decimated the population of worthy examples. Instead, it is a time capsule with low miles, pristine condition, and just enough modifications to safely unleash the potential of the original-to-the-U.S. STI without compromising its DNA. Many of the modifications are genuine STI parts from the Japanese special-edition STI Spec-C cars, including the strut tower brace, front lip, and rally roof vent designed to create positive pressure in the car to keep dust out while barreling down dirt roads. The factory gold BBS STI wheels are present, while the car rides on Cusco coilovers which improve stance and handling substantially. This car shows no signs of ever being rallied, as it was built to invoke some of the high-end STIs that never made it to North American soil.
The original owner bought the STI on his 35th birthday in Oakland, California, selling a Porsche 911SC in order to acquire it. He initially added a Cusco rear sway bar, followed by the cat-back exhaust comprised of a TurboXS mid-pipe + Cobb muffler and the Cusco Zero2E Coilovers with Swift Springs (the original exhaust is available). The Cusco Camber Plates with pillow-ball mounts provide 1.5 degrees of negative camber at all four corners, contributing to exceptional turn-in characteristics—a period correct build that contributes to the classic nature of the car.
He was a big fan of the JDM-only STI Spec-C, which led to the further addition of the OEM roof-vent kit, OEM Spec-C carbon rear wing, black mirror covers, and replica Spec-C lip to round out the tasteful OEM-inspired modifications. He then added a Cobb AccessPort and TurboXS catted down pipe and short ram intake to round out the common ‘Stage 2’ setup. The STI also has a Harmann Motive oil cooler kit, cross-drilled rotors, and new brake pads. It saw Mobil 1 oil changes every 3,000 miles and was refreshed with Swepco Transmission Fluid. The final form of this car was never tracked or launched, as the owner knew what a special time capsule, he created, which led to increasingly infrequent use as the years passed.
The owner traded it in to us for a 997 Porsche, which is arguably one of the only upgrades over this riotous flat-four powered rally car. As a one-owner car, this STI saw fastidious maintenance and the lucky owner moved from Northern California to Erie, Colorado in 2009. Since we’ve had it, the white STI has quickly became a favorite at Glen Shelly, drawing comparisons to the E30 M3 and as a marker of just how soulless subsequent generations of STIs became. In preparation for sale we completed a round of paint-less dent repair to remove several light hail impressions, then we had the off-the-shelf Cobb tune adjusted for the intake and Colorado air density. Finally, we gave it a fresh oil change and are very reluctantly posting it. The Carfax is clean and the OEM cats and exhaust are included in the sale for Colorado emissions compliance. We would like a new owner who will enjoy it as it becomes an important and relevant classic in the STI timeline.
We have an extremely strong emotional attachment to this STI, it’s a true unicorn that very well could end up in one of our personal stashes. The price is firm…
Overall exterior of this STI is exceptional, with only a handful of unavoidable flaws on the thin Subaru paint and bulging body panels. The white paint is all original, gauging at 3-5 mils and showing a uniform shine. There are a handful of rock chips and slight touch-ups on the front bumper, and it is apparent that the bumper was curbed a few times before the limited edition STI lip was installed. We did extensive paintless dent repair to correct some light hail impressions. We opted to leave a faint indent on the passenger side, which is perfectly camouflaged as a body line. There is minor clear coat peel above the Cobb exhaust, though overall the rear bumper is in very good shape with only minimal chips. There are a few pulled trim clips on the inside of the front wheel wells apparent upon close inspection. The exterior trim is in very good condition with only slight UV fade on the vertical rubber pieces between the windows. The windshield glass has slight pitting, but no cracks. The side and rear windows are not tinted at all, which preserves this car’s factory character and exceptional visibility. The headlight lenses are in good condition, with no cracks and only slight opaqueness. The taillight lenses are clear and crack-free, presenting extremely well. The stock gold BBS wheels are in great shape with some curb rash on the rims and a few spoke dings on the front right wheel. They are wrapped in Champiro SX2 225/45/17 tires with good tread remaining.
Overall the interior is also in great shape, presenting as a true time capsule of these two-tone STI interiors from the early years. There are no odors and it has never been smoked (or vaped) in. There are no rips or tears in the carpet and the all-weather floor mats are in good shape. The steering wheel leather is good shape with slight wear; the cherry blossom pink stitching is in fantastic shape. The gauges all function correctly. The headliner is in excellent condition. The heat blows hot and the air-conditioning blows cold. The stereo sounds excellent. There is minimal wear on the center console trim and the painted plastic surround on the center AC vents. The front seats are in excellent condition; the combination of black fabric and blue alcantara is durable and shows minimal wear. The rear seats are in similar very good shape, with a couple of minor wear marks in the rear vinyl upper door cards. All interior functions, options, power accessories, and controls work correctly. The cup holders are functional. Two keys are included with the car, along with all the owners’ manuals.
It is evident this car was well-maintained and thoughtfully modified to preserve this car’s exceptional driving qualities for the long haul. The modifications all enhance the car’s factory character and the EJ257 engine starts on command, idles smoothly with a delicious boxer rumble, and pulls very strongly to redline. The turbo is healthy and sounds fantastic through the short-ram intake. The vaunted, Porsche-designed 6-speed transmission shifts smoothly, and the clutch is easy to modulate. The brakes are powerful and linear, and the steering and suspension are tight and full of feedback. There is a slight pull to the left, which could be corner balanced out, but didn’t want to adjust the ride height (which we would raise slightly) as that is highly subjective. Any serious buyer would also be wise to consider the future maintenance costs of any Subaru as it approaches the 100K mile mark. That said, as it sits, this STI offers time-capsule status and daily driver practicality and would make a great car for someone who wants to relive the golden era of 90’s and 2000’s Japanese sports cars and Subaru’s World Rally dominance.