I read your magazine for the first time last week and I applaud your presentation and writing. I thoroughly enjoyed the magazine, and I loved the concise information and interesting articles, which were devoid of any undeserving praise or bad recommendations. I was wondering if you have or will be doing any articles on budget performance? I am 17 and I am looking for a good car to take to college. My current '96 Camry inline-4 four door doesn't quite cut it in the performance area, and it doesn't seem like a good base to do many modifications on. What cars should I be looking at to get a decently priced, but still nice, ride started? I will probably want to spend less than $15,000 on the car itself. I would have to spend less, but if I get good scholarships my parents are going to buy me a car for college.
Nathan P.-via the Internet
I am glad you enjoy reading Turbo and we thank you for your feedback. Before you make the decision of purchasing a car it's important that you do your homework. First you have to determine what type of car you want: four-door, two-door, coupe, hatchback, T-top, convertible, etc. Also you need to consider what type of driving conditions the vehicle will be exposed to. A two-seater sports car would probably be a bad idea if it snows five-months out of the year. If you're looking for a car in the $15,000 range, there are several cars you can choose from. Our first choice would probably be a Subaru WRX. You can find a three-year old model for around $10,000, which leaves you with $5,000 to fix up your car. The WRX has tremendous potential and with the right performance parts the car can be extremely quick. Our second choice would be a Honda S2000. Getting into a used S2000 will probably take up your $15,000 budget, but the car is a pleasure to drive. Something about having the top-down and the engine singing to 9000 rpm just makes your adrenaline flow. Our final choice would be a used Nissan 350Z. Prices for the 350 have been on a slow decline and if you look hard enough you can probably pick one up within your budget. The 350Z is a pocket-rocket out of the box; and with some suspension mods, the car will eat up the track. Hope that helps and good luck.
As the current owner of a WRX Wagon, I couldn't help but to be drawn to your "JDM Power Wagons" article in the July '06 issue. Talk about a difference in tuning philosophies, it's hard to imagine they both came from the same company. Lots of companies offer different stages of tuning, but it is the exteriors of these cars that surprised me. Most of the time tuner companies have a set exterior graphics package, mainly so you recognize who they are right away - but the contrast here is amazing. With the EVO everything pops and stands out. While on the Legacy you hardly notice it has decals on it. Great work on the article. Now to my question, I have a GReddy Profec e-01, like the one installed on the Evo, and I was wondering what they used to install it into the air vent. I don't think that is a mounting option that comes with the boost controller, unless it is something they recently included with their kit. Thanks in advance for you help.
Adrien Cooper-via the Internet
The mount kit that Trust (parent company of GReddy) used on the EVO wagon was actually a cup holder accessory that was attached to the factory vent. You can find these cup holders at Super Autobacs [(714) 903-9900]. If you are not here in the west coast where there are tons of stores that sell them, try searching the internet for one.
Dear Turbo Magazine,
I know that everyone starts out their questions with "I love your magazine," but in a world full of opinions and false Internet forums, your magazine is a beacon of truth that guides my import hobbies. I have had many imports through the years - from the MR2 Turbo to the 350Z and even a couple Hondas. My latest passion is for my 2004 WRX STi. I know that you guys are not as fond of the STi as its rival, the EVO. But from one import lover to another, especially one more knowledgeable than I, can you help me with my dilemma?
As I have mentioned, I own a 2004 WRX STi. I am to the point in my upgrades - or metamorphoses, as I like to call them - that I need a solid ECU upgrade. I am torn between some options. I like The GReddy E-Manage Ultimate because it has many features I am looking for, like data-logging and the ability to custom tune. The problem is I can't find a lot of people using it on the STi. I hear that it will not work very well for this application. Of course, this is coming from the have-no-clue-Internet-forums, and from the only local shop around. Can you tell me if it is a good option, or not? The other unit I have researched is the Cobb Tuning Access-Port, which is a little on the boring side for a control freak like myself. On the other hand it is proven on the STi's complex ECU. I am not one to go with the crowd, but we are talking about a little bit of money and I don't like wasting it. Please help!
Your Loyal Reader,
Matt Logsdon-Madison, IN
The first thing you need to realize is the difference between the Cobb Tuning Access-Port and the E-Manage Ultimate system. The Cobb system is actually making tuning changes through the factory ECU; while the E-Manage Ultimate is a piggyback system, and is just manipulating the sensor's signal. There are advantages and disadvantages to both systems. However, I checked with GReddy to make sure the E-Manage Ultimate would work with the drive-by-wire throttle system of the STi - they said yes.