is wonders assenbiled project ★

Proud of Boxer: The new FB20 engine

Subaru recently unveiled the future of its boxer motor – the new FB20.  You can read more on the tech specs HERE.

It replaces the formidable EJ-series engine that has spanned over two decades in various displacements (1989-2012 and possibly beyond).  The new motor has already found a home in the latest Subaru Foresters, including U.S.-spec models.   I was turned onto this from a post on AClassBlog on the 2011 Tokyo Auto Salon (Japan’s trade show for auto tuners), Subarus of the Tokyo Auto Salon:

“The new evolution of the boxer engine, the FB20 was on display at the manufacturer’s presentation. The new engine promises to be better for the environment without giving up performance.”

I wonder if the inevitable high-performance turbo variant of the FB engine will ever become a weapon of choice for future Bugeye motor swaps.


When my car was relatively new, I always dreamed of doing a full year-correct EJ207 engine swap, and transforming my car into the complete bugeye WRX STi that was never sold in America. However, first the stock engine had to go.  Because my priority has been reliability as a daily driver, keeping engine mods to “everything you can do except a turbo swap” – and more broadly because the EJ205 in my WRX has held up like a champ – almost nine years later my car remains a USDM WRX. (At least it looks the part of a Bugeye STI ; )

I have to assume the bugeye v7 STI swaps available out there are probably much higher in mileage.



Bugeye STI packing an EJ207

However, while there is an appeal to running a Subaru’s latest-and-greatest powertrain – sort of like doing a “Terminator” ’04 Cobra swap into a classic ’67 Mustang notchback – it feels like in some ways it would be sacrificing some of the essential character of the bugeye WRX.

The bugeye WRX was one of the few imported cars that in its day that was not technology-bloated or laden with electronic everything.  The bugeye was pre-drive-by-wire, meaning your foot actually connected to the throttle body. It had a simple mechanical design that should be appreciated – sort of how classic mechanical watches that you have to wind have become lusted after in an era impelled by technology.

That, and look at all that plastic in the new FB20’s engine bay. boooo  : P


The new STI’s are high tech stuff

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2 responses

  1. Alex LaFreniere

    Is that a plastic intake manifold on the FB20?

    February 3, 2011 at 12:08 am

  2. Gerry

    yes it is. they are said to help keep engine temps down.

    October 27, 2013 at 9:06 am

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