Project +Lightness

As much as I love turbos, I have never been a big power guy. I like my V8s N/A and my 4-cylinders turbocharged. Turbocharging a V8 just seems excessive for me. Not that I am against turbocharging a V8, it’s just that 300-400 HP is right in my wheelhouse. Not too crazy, but enough to pull away from a pack of appliances. Of course this  also depends on how much the car weights.

Adding power makes you faster on the straights; subtracting weight makes you faster everywhere.

-Colin Chapman

I’ve also never been a super lightweight guy either. Sports cars are nice and all but I find working for every single inch of horsepower from a car to be a chore. Some people love hooning underpowered cars, not me.

I’m more of a balance type of guy. Efficiency and feedback are my weaknesses. Broad power bands, sharp handling and lots of grip rule my universe. Which makes modding my WRX all the more challenging/rewarding. The main drawback is that this mod path is almost always more expensive and the results almost always hidden. I’ve bitten the HP bullet a time or two and after a while the novelty always fades and I de-mod in favor of more handling. Barrelling down a backroad never fails to release mega endorphins to my brain.

My overall goal for Project +Lightness is to:
#1 – Achieve a weight goal of 3000 lbs w/o driver
#2 – Achieve a weight to power goal of >10:1.
#3 – Achieve a weight distribution goal of 55/45.

Now I know #3 is going to give me the most issues and is my primary focus. The main problem is that when you remove weight from the front there is generally an equal opportunity to remove that same about of weight in the rear. Which helps goal #1, but does nothing for goal #3. Like wheels for example. Luckily I’m only 85 lbs from goal number one.

A stock 2003 WRX  weighs in at 3085 lbs with a weight distribution of approximately 60/40. 1820 lbs in the front and 1255 lbs in the rear. Getting to a W/D of 55/45 requires some combination of removing at least 140 lbs from the front of the car and relocating or adding 65 lbs to the rear while meeting goal #1.

Finding 140 lbs worth of items from the front end with A/C system off the table is going to be a challenge. But I have 100 lbs in my sights already. Some of which I have already removed/replaced.

Battery Relocation | -40 lbs
Relocating the battery to the trunk is ~40 lbs off the front end right off the bat. I’m not sure why I haven’t done this yet.

Oswald Performance Lightweight Front Bumper Beam | -21 lbs
~20 lbs in one of the most forward locations on the car should provide great benefits in handling improvements.

Oswald Performance Front Subframe | -10 lbs
To me this is a win-win. Reducing weight while strengthening the chassis.

TSSFab Front Subframe | -15 lbs
This is actually the subframe that the steering rack attaches to. One major benefit of this subframe is that it allows the installation of a 13:1 2015 STi rack without all the cutting involved with the OEM subframe.

TSSFab Trans Cross Member | -6 lbs
This is close to the middle but I believe it is still forward of the driver’s seat so I’m including it. 🙂

Grimmspeed Lightweight Pulley | -3.5 lbs
Let’s my EJ207 rev even smoother/easier.

ACT Lightweight Flywheel | -11 lbs
See above GS pulley. On my To-Do list.

DSS Carbon Fiber Driveshaft | -10 lbs
See above ACT flywheel. On my To-Do list. Since this is in the middle of the car I would split the difference front/rear and basically make it a wash.

Fog Light Delete | -3 lbs
I recently removed my JDM fogs, not sure how much the fog covers weight that will offset this.

Intake Silencer Delete | -1 lbs
That extra little jug for the silencer was heavier than I though. I just cut it off and JB Welded a piece of plastic over the opening to make a elbow.

Turbo Blanket/Heat Shield Delete | -0.5 lbs
I removed my turbo heat shield and added turbo blanket. The net result was about a half pound.

Fuel Injector Brackets | -3 lbs
These things were heavier than I expected.

STi Fuel Filter (Relocate to tank) | -?? lbs
I won’t know how much the WRX filter in the engine bay weight along with the fuel it holds until I remove it. But apart from cleaning up the engine bay (and potentially making room for my flex fuel sensor) I don’t like having a cup of fuel being pre-heated by my engine bay. It’s probably a non-issue but it bugs me nonetheless.

Prop Rod | -1 lbs
Uh, I removed it because my bushing broke and I don’t want it flopping around in the engine bay. At some point I will get Grimmspeed Hood Struts.

Misc Stuff | – xx lbs??
I have a few things that I removed that I haven’t weighed just yet or just forgot to put on this list. At some point I will figure out how to embed my spreadsheet and keep this info organized on my blog.

Overall this will give me a W/D of around 57.xx/42.xx and around 100lbs removed from the front end. Not a bad start but I have a feeling the next 40 lbs will probably come by the ounces. 😦


IWSTI AnorexicSTi Thread

NASIOC Weight Reduction Thread

NASIOC Various WRX Parts Weight Thread

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