Daniel Ivancic likes to be the first and best in whatever he does. You only
need to look at his ride - the first wide-body STi in Australia and the
3rd outright place getter in the 2004 AutoSalon Final Battle.
Despite the show nature of this beast, Daniel says it’s no excuse to keep the
car under wraps - he drives it regularly on weekends with a car-load of mates.
You only need to consider Daniel drove the car from interstate specifically for
our photo shoot...
Daniel is relatively new to the car show and high-performance scene. He says his previous cars - Beemers and Hondas - were nothing
extravagant: this MY02 STi is his first encounter with performance.
"I could have bought a WRX but I’m glad I went for the STI," says Daniel.
"It turns out that it’s a great platform for mods. Sure, you can take out the
engine and build a new engine for a WRX but you don’t get the 6 speed, Brembos
or Suretrac diffs of the STi."
Unfortunately, the powerband of the STi leaves much to be desired and Daniel
soon found himself entering the aftermarket bolt-on scene. His first move was
the fitment of a cat-back exhaust, interceptor module and, later, a high-flow
This combo improved drivability and gave a lot more performance - but not for
long. The original engine had traveled about 20,000 kilometers when it dropped
By now Daniel had hooked up with the guys at Tony Rigoli Performance (TRP)
and the official word was that 2.5 was "tha sh&*". Daniel gave them the
go-ahead for the project. The aim: top-level Subaru performance.
The Rigoli boys have built countless Subie engines and know what it takes to
run numbers with reliability. The stock STi block was discarded for a TRP ‘Stage
2’ 2.5, which was built with aftermarket ceramic coated forged pistons, billet
rods, copper head gaskets, custom cams and various other parts that’ve served
the Rigolis well.
To produce the high kilowatt numbers, Daniel relies on a GT61 roller-bearing
turbocharger which is mounted side-by-side with a TurboSmart 38mm external
wastegate. Boost pressure is controlled to around 30 psi by a TurboSmart e-Boost
The turbo is mounted on a custom up-pipe which leads into a 3 inch mandrel
bent system. The air intake comprises a K&N pod filter on a large diameter
pipe and a Mood Motorsport custom intercooler which we’re told chills induction
air to near ambient. A GFB blow off valve is installed to the pipework. An array
of braided lines is also found in the engine bay.
The fuel system comprises a rising rate regulator, Bosch Motorsport fuel pump
and, at the time of photography, high-flowed STi injectors. A bigger set of 1000cc
Rochester injectors have since gone in. Fuel and ignition are controlled by a
MicroTech LT8 programmable management system.
By the time the mechanics had been sorted, Daniel had already given the body
the all-out treatment.
Take a long, close look at our photos. You may notice the extra width which
is most easily recognised alongside the taillights - there’s about 2 inches of
extra panel width on each side. Blending the wide body to the existing bodywork
took numerous changes – for example, the outward curve for the wider rear guards
now starts about half way along the back door. Notice that the rear door handles
have also been removed and smoothed over - access to the back seat is now via
At the forward end, the standard STi guards were sliced off along their top
edge, spacer sections were welded on and the guards were reattached in a new
outboard location. The newly created cavity between the front guards and doors
is filled by mesh.
Other body add-ons include an aluminium GT-style job, skirts, custom front
bar and bonnet. These body parts and wide-body conversion can be credited to J
Racing. The look is completed using flame graphics down each side.
But forget some of that that because, not long after our shoot, the car was
given a full House of Colour re-spray, flag graphics, new rear wing and...
This car is always evolving.
Rolling stock are 18 inch BBS alloys - the same as used in the Ferrari
challenge. Daniel had the rims painted gold to achieve a STi-like appearance.
And check out the steam-roller tyre size – 265/35 18... Daniel says nobody in
Australia has managed to fit wider rubber to their STi - the wide body kit
really opens the door to wild wheel and tyre packages.
The body rides closer to the bitumen thanks to Tein adjustable coil-overs
teamed with a Whiteline swaybars, front strut brace, anti-lift kit and
adjustable rear lower control arms. Brakes remain standard apart from DBA
slotted discs and GreenStuff pads at the front.
Inside is a supremely crafted leather trim teamed with an audio system to
knock your socks off.
When Daniel decided to inject some class into the STi cabin he didn’t bother
changing the seats - all that was needed was some high-quality leather,
which continues to the door trims. AutoMeter boost and AFR meters are mounted on
the A pillar while the e-Boost controller is integrated into the driver’s
Credit for the sound system can be directed at Pioneer Australia (who
sponsored the install) and Autobahn in Airport West, Melbourne (who performed
the installation). The nerve-centre of the system is a brilliant 7 inch flip-out
Pioneer DVD/TV/CD/MP3 unit which provides Dolby 5.1 sound and is wired to three
amplifiers. 700W and 480W amplifiers drive the assortment of in-cabin speakers
while a 1000W amp drives the single 12 inch sub that lives in the boot. The entire
boot is presented at show car standard.
And what else is that stowed in the boot? Yep, an indecently large nitrous
When Daniel gets the opportunity to hit the quarter mile, he’ll rely on some
good ol’ giggle gas for an extra bit of speed. With the 100hp shot of gas
flowing, this machine has punched out 540hp (403kW) at all four wheels (as
measured on TRP’s Dyno Dynamics chassis dyno).
Driving through a Jim Berry custom heavy duty clutch and with a set of
yet-to-be-fitted semi-slick tyres, Daniel is hopeful of running a 10 second pass.
"There’s another car in Sydney with the same engine set-up as mine but with a
smaller turbo - that ran a 10.9, so I think a 10 second pass is realistic," says
Tens or not, there’s one thing for certain.
This is far and away one of the wildest and most immaculately presented
Subies in Australia.
TRP (Tony Rigoli Performance) +61 2 9644 3100
Daniel would also like to thank his wife Wafe, OZWRX.com, Imad (the slick)
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