Feature Cars

February 1, 2017

“5UITUP”: Ryan’s Widebody WRX

Photos: Shaynee Cowan & Casey Pye
Story: James Pinheiro

Ryan’s journey began in early 2015, when an innocent routine trip to his local Supercheap Auto ended up costing him the purchase of a 2009 Subaru WRX. Already the proud owner of a 2006 Forester XT, when Ryan drove past the (then) World Rally Blue Subaru WRX parked out the front of a dealership, he told himself ‘I’ll stop by and take a look at that on the way home’. Well.. that’s what he did. Surprisingly enough, he also left the same car yard less than an hour later – with the car!

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First things first. Straight up – the Mrs was not happy.  The Forester was the ‘perfect car’ in her eyes and Ryan was a proud new father to a baby boy earlier in the year, so the Forester was everything they needed when it came to space. Although after a couple of days / weeks.. naturally – she began to love the car. There was enough room in the boot for the pram and a stack of groceries, Luckily – Ryan was in the clear! And because he was in the clear – that’s when the ideas started and the modding began.

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The modding began with the ‘necessities’. An exhaust, blow off valve, bigger top mount, intercooler etc. Once the basics were on, Ryan decided to create a Instagram account to share his progress with family, friends and others around the world which share a similar interest. Upon the creation of this Instagram account, Ryan discovered a world full of inspiration and it’s exactly where he fell in love. To pinpoint the moment – it was as soon as he laid eyes on the full Varis wide body kit. This kit was of course also added to the ‘list of necessities’ and the rest is history.

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Ryan purchased the entire kit slowly – one part at a time. The major downfall to the purchase of the Varis kit was that it was only suited to fit a 2009 – 2014 STi, or 2010 – 2014 WRX. Ryan had a 2009 WRX and this meant in order to fit the kit – a massive transformation of the rear end was required in order to make the “narrow body” of the 2009 WRX equal to the 2014 STi. The project became a ‘go hard or go home’ situation and without a doubt Ryan was going full steam ahead with no exceptions.

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There was no other choice. The next steps entail the purchase of a 2014 STi shell, from an advertisement on Facebook. Ryan proceeded to cut the rear guards off the shell and also collected all the random bits and pieces required to fit the Varis kit. With help from his friend Matt Paasila, Ryan was then in a position where he could be confident he had sourced everything required to move forward.

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Many of us understand the pain of a fairly steep driveway. Ryan shares the same pain and under no circumstance wanted to be constantly scrapping a $13k body kit on a rough concrete surface. Therefore, lowered springs and coil-overs were not an option. At this point, Ryan began to research air-bag suspension.

Ryan contacted Airlift Performance directly in the states, explaining the plans he had for WRX. Smartly enough he also included a photoshopped version of his ‘finished product’ vision. ‘Congratulations!’ was the first word in the response to Ryan’s email.. Airlift Performance kindly welcomed Ryan to the Airlift team and also provided him sponsorship to assist with spreading their name here in Australia.

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Crunch time. The moment had come to finally assemble the car. Ryan had sourced all the parts – bodykit, suspension.. and the critical part was imminent – welding those fat guards onto the car. Ryan’s first chain of thought was ‘Queen Street Customs’ – he knew the guys had done an immense amount of extreme body work on multiple jaw dropping cars in the scene, so there was no hesitation to pay them a visit and discuss plans.

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“The team at Queen Street Customs were extremely straight forward and very accepting of the project”. The following week the guys got down to business, Ryan handed over all the bits and pieces he had for the transformation – guards, moulds, suspension.. Queen St was going to do it all. While the transformation was under way, Ryan knew he needed to pull off some sort of wide wheels to accommodate the wider body. It wasn’t an easy choice, as Ryan also had to take the Brembo brake upgrade into account – which he had installed only a couple months prior (Limited Edition Spec C STi Brembo Brakes). In the end, it’s obvious he made the correct decision – Work Meisters S1 3P wheels in 18×11 +5 for the front and 18×11 -10 for the rear.

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Progress occurred at a much faster rate than Ryan anticipated! Queen Street Customs did an epic job with the body work, install of the airbags – etc and it was finally time talk and confirm paint choice. Ryan knew he wanted ‘some sort of purple’, to be more specific – originally he opted for the ‘Audi Velvet purple’ – so the boys at Queen St mixed a test batch up for him however it didn’t pop as much as he desired. A few more purples were mixed however Ryan was seeking that ‘wow factor’. Buck at Queen St came along and showed Ryan a purple he had mixed up in the past, but never had been used. The colour was a custom purple 4 stage pearl, immediately Ryan gave the boys the go ahead and the outcome leaves crowds speechless – no matter where the car is displayed.

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That leaves us with the 5UITUP that you see today. The same car which won ‘Best JDM’ @ the 4th Tuned. x Nulon Show & Shine at Sydney Motorsport Park in January this year! Ryan advised he still has a few extra mods up his sleeve before he can really say that the car is ‘complete’. We’re excited to see what’s next for his masterpiece! Stay Tuned.

Mods List –

– Perrin front mount intercooler
– Perrin cold air intake
– HKS SSQV4 blow off valve (plumbed back to intake)
– Invidia Q300 with titanium burnt tips – Turbo back exhaust
– STi Spec C Brembo brakes
– DBA T4 Kangaroo paw slotted rotors
– Braided brake lines
– Cusco brake master cylinder stopper
– STi horizontally flexible strut brace
– Grimmspeed air oil separator
– Perrin radiator shroud and belt cover
– Custom internally sprayed headlights
– Full Varis wide body kit
– Varis rear carbon fibre diffuser, with exhaust finishers and rear carbon spats
– Work Miester S1 3P wheels (white face with polished lips and gold hardware)
– Nitto into tyres (275/35/18)
– STi S206 front drivers sear with red S206 seat belts
– Airlift Performance 3H/3P Airbag suspension kit
– Damd D shape steering wheel
– BRZ shark fin antenna
– Varis rear wing
– Launsport Carbon fibre rear wiper delete



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