03/04 Cobra vs. STi

Discussion in 'SVT Tech Forum' started by STiBoost25, Jun 6, 2005.


  1. STiBoost25

    STiBoost25 New Member

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    I am 19 years old and I have been debating back and fourth on what I should get, an 03/04 Cobra or an STi. I will be returning from training around this time next spring and I will have about $3-$4,000 to play with as a down payment on a car, either would be used. I live in Maine so the STi has the edge there, it has 4 doors, space, a lot of versitility and would run circles around a Cobra in the handling department, I would be picking a used 04 up with 20k ish on the ODO for $24-$25,000. My other option is to go with the not lean but mean 2003 SVT Cobra. I like the Cobra because it is your traditional badass car, it needs no introduction unless someone ignorant thinks it's just an ordinary Mustang, but for the most part the sound, the grunt of 390hp/390lb ft. or torque out of the box and how much it loves mods is very appealing.

    I currently own a 1999 Ford Explorer XLT with 87k on the ticker, often times though it has not given me much trouble I get ****ed off with its crappy cheap rattles, interior and just a cheap feel... I swore I would never buy domestic again. I bet you are all thinking I am just some 19 year old punk with a fat wallet that is mommy and daddies however I have always earned everything I have, I have driven a lot of cars as well... I bet your all thinking "Oh great some cocky show boat kid wants to own a 400hp car". Well this is not the case, I am very responsible and though some play is inevitable while owning any performance car I am fully aware that having a no license and a car like this is useless if you get my drift.

    Right now I pay $267 per month to insure my Explorer, I have gotten quotes on both the STi and the Cobra, the SVT is considerably more expensive to insure... I will expect to pay $271 per mo for the STi and over $350 per mo for the SVT. Keep in mind that these are right now quotes and I will have a full year under my belt before I have either car, I talked to a guy who owns a Sonic SVT and is my age with a clean record and he pays $300 per month.

    The cons of the SVT are that I would have to buy a $1000 beater for the winter on this bad boy because of the state I live in, a blessing in disquise because it will be all the more special when I do drive it? I have also considered gas mileage and thought the STi has half the cylinders I hear from multiple sources that they get the same gas mileage, 17mpg city roughly.

    I have driven quite a few 8cyl cars in my time, I have driven an 02 LS1 Z28, 1994 LT1 A4, 2 1999 C5 Convertibles, 1998 LS1 Convertible, a bunch of newer GT's but the only Cobra I have driven was a 2001 Convertible with 21k on it. I liked and didn't like it and was wondering if anyone can compare them besides there specs, someone who has driven both. I noticed the SVT clutch was brutal, very very stiff, the shifting was not smooth at all and felt cheap and anything but smooth but the worst was the interior, the same ol' Ford control cluster. I was wondering how you guys feel about the 01 I drove (that year SVT) and how it differs from the new S/C ones, in power, build quality, handling and overall feel, smooth shifting?

    Last but not least I would like to know what I can expect to pay for a used 2003 or 2004 SVT. I would like to stay under $25,000 if I were to buy an STi because I don't have to shell out the extra cash for a beater, I spoke with a guy who said he paid $23,000 for his 03 Sonic with 30,000 miles on it... are these generally what they go for or did he get lucky? I would think they will drop too by next spring. I'd like to find one used for $22,000-$23,000 with under 40,000 miles. Thanks for the help and thoughts guys.
  2. sawman70

    sawman70 New Member

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    Looking at your screen name, I'd say you already made up your mind.
  3. machfelon

    machfelon New Member

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    Get the Cobra!!
  4. CobraG

    CobraG New Member

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    I'll be honest, I didn't read your entire thread, but I'd say go for the Cobra. Yes, I am biased. I haven't driven a wrx or sti or any of those other letters they like to call em, but I sat in one. I wasn't very impressed. My initial reaction was it was cheap and felt tinny (like a tin can).
    The Cobra just felt more solid, more durable.
    But it's your money and your call, good luck either way.
    But if you are looking for votes, I say Cobra :)
  5. chrisbudl1

    chrisbudl1 New Member

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    your right on the plus with all wheel drive, and maine's weather, i would imagine. personally, there's a totally different feel to awd. it's like the car just lifts up, I like being thrown back into the seat, as the back end squats on take off, and being able to do a burn out, at will. But if I had a family, and it was my daily driver, I might look into the sti. but then again, I am partial to cobras. you have a year to figure it out, and that insurance seems really high, or I am old, and drive a 97. I think I pay $600 and something every 6 months?
  6. KingCobra2001

    KingCobra2001 New Member

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    Cobra all the way

    I bought my 2001 Cobra last June. I have never looked back since. I have, however, gone through 3 sets of tires. Surprisingly, easy to do driving 125 miles a day for work. SO, at $500 per set, and those synthetic oil changes...maintenance adds up. If AWD is really necessary (and it isnt), I hear the STI's are nice, but I'd do up a 2000/2001 Audi S4 over that Japanese stuff anyday. You can get one with 40,000 miles in about the same price bracket you're thinking. Being that I've lived in Colorado for about a year and a half and my Cobra is my daily driver (I looked into the winter time beater as well), I'd say driving in snow isnt really that bad. Its definitely a change from the FWD car I had previously. You'll learn real quick that 1st gear gets you going sideways, and then its 2nd where you start lurching forward. I definitely got used to it, and actually started to like driving in extreme conditions. Whatever you do...cheers!
  7. KingCobra2001

    KingCobra2001 New Member

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    Insurance

    Also...who are you getting your insurance through? I have Statefarm and I pay $153/mo for auto and $25,000 worth of renter's insurance converage. $350/mo seems like a rip. Im only 24 years old too. There cant be that big of a difference. Unless there's crazy state minimums in Maine. I dont know...
  8. hersheyman

    hersheyman New Member

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    I didn't read it all either. If you want a true muscle car get the Cobra. If you want an import get the STI. :shrug:
  9. STiBoost25

    STiBoost25 New Member

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    I drove a 2004 Black Vert SVT yesterday and all I can say is... umm... whoa.
    I want to be able to spend $23,000 for one next spring with 30k ish on it. I will be putting $3-4000 down on the car as well. I just hope it will be fairly easy to find one for that price with under 40k.
  10. 01CobraDude

    01CobraDude New Member

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    I think you would have to be extremely lucky to find an '03/'04 in the $23K range. I see those years carrying anwhere from the high $28's to the low $33's. A years time and some pretty good haggling and you might be able to shave a grand or two from those numbers. Might want to talk to the guy you mentioned in your first post again to find out if it was $23K he financed after his down payment and/or trade in. Maybe I'm way off base and maybe the Maine market isn't very strong for Cobras, but I don't see you finding one for the number you're looking to spend. Whatever way you decide to go, good luck!
  11. chuckstang95

    chuckstang95 Member

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    its really not much of a comparo
    cobra>>>>>sti
  12. CobraG

    CobraG New Member

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    03 Cobra's are still running about $30,000 here in Colorado Springs, CO.
  13. jbap222

    jbap222 New Member

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    I had a GT and an STI and I would say if it snows a lot get the sti. They are quick cars with that are actually a little practicality with the four doors. From my experience it was a blast in the snow, with the right tires of course. You wont be able get the big #'s that you can with the cobra. Also if you decide to mod your will more than likely need to port your waste gate with any full exhausts option.

    I don't believe you can go wrong with either choice. It is pretty much up to what you want/need.

    Jim
  14. kystang1889

    kystang1889 New Member

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    cobra is faster and eisier to mod but not as practical (hardly a back seat vs 4 door) i'd say go cobra i've riden in both my friend has a sti its a nice car but just not my taste
  15. silvrgt

    silvrgt New Member

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    Though I want a cobra myself..you live in new england..who are you trying to fool? You NEED AWD/FWD. I just spent 2 weeks in massachusetts and I could count the RWD cars I saw on my fingers. STis are very nice, and they feel like ****ing rocking ships from a dig. I say go for an STi.
  16. machfelon

    machfelon New Member

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    Are you kidding...Get the COBRA

    STi are fugly as hell!!! :lol:

    The northeast only gets maybe a month's worth of bad weather for the whole year... Thats no reason to compromise!!
  17. WhiteStallionGT

    WhiteStallionGT Member

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    Buy the Cobra, you won't regret it. AWD is fun, then you get tired of it, they have thier limits, you will need an engine rebuild above 400+hp. Cobras can handle a lot more on the stock block. I was in the same position as you were a couple months ago, sti, cobra, sti, cobra, back and forth back and forth. I then realized all the power potential with the Cobra and all the limits an Sti had.

    As for the winter issue, buy a beater. If you can afford a Cobra, you can sure afford a beater.
  18. jmk97GT

    jmk97GT New Member

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    Those are my favorite parts about a mustang!
  19. Juice33

    Juice33 New Member

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    I think I answered you on another forum.

    I have an 03 Cobra now, I had a 04 STi before it. I like the Cobra better. It is much faster and the gearing is nicer too. With the STi you have to constantly shift, while the Cobra's gears are much longer and filled with power everywhere. I bought my 03 with 115 miles on it and am paying $100 less a month for it. plus for some reason insurance is cheaper on my Cobra than it was on the STi. You will probably have a hard time finding ins. at the right price because of your age for either car though. The STi definately handles a lot better and the brakes are just phenominal on the STi too. But other thanb thoise two features, the CObra is much more fun and badass.Another car to look at is the Evo, and the insurance will be cheaper on that than the STi or Cobra because of the sub 300 HP rating.
  20. StngStr

    StngStr Member

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    If you choose to go AWD, why not the Evo? I'd take one of those over the STi. Looks much better!

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