Getting the best turbo for STI is not as complicated as most people think. With this review, you will be getting relevant information on turbo and how to pick the right one for your vehicle.
Turbo is a device used to boost the capacity of automobile engines, overall efficiency, and engine performance.
Therefore, picking the best turbo for WRX STI will ensure that you get the best out of your vehicle.
We have come up with this list of best STI turbo using several important parameters such as capacity and brand reliability to show which ones stand out.
What is the best STI turbo upgrade?
Bapmic is the best brand for WRX STI turbo as this brand has set itself apart in the world of automobile spare parts making.
Bapmic has a history of delivering quality replacement for auto parts without compromising on customer service as well.
So far, its level of compatibility with different vehicle types is broad, which gives you fewer worries about the suitable automobile STI turbo upgrade for your engine.
Why “Bapmic” is the best WRX STI turbo?
Bapmic 14411-AA700 is the best WRX STI turbo for several notable reasons. One of them is the high-efficiency level of the turbo, which gives you several years of use without worries.
We all want to buy a turbocharger that is both durable and reliable. Bapmic encompasses these qualities and more.
Also, whereas several other turbochargers have a complicated installation process, that’s not the same with Bapmic.
Bapmic turbocharger has a straightforward installation process that ensures that everything is fitted and ready for use quickly.
The gaskets are also excellent, especially for their affordable price. Therefore, the Bapmic 14411-AA700 is your best choice for the WRX STI turbo.
Top 10 Best Turbo for STI Review 2022- Top Choice
01. Bapmic 14411-AA700- Best Turbo Upgrade for STI
- Compatible with Subaru Impreza STI
- The actuator set is 18 PSI
- Uses water and oil-cooling type
- Horsepower rating ranges between 300-380 HP
Bapmic is an automobile spare part maker that specializes in the aftermarket replacement of auto parts.
If you are working on your automobile STI turbo upgrade anytime soon, Bapmic is a brand you can trust.
The Bapmic 14411-AA700 has a maximum horsepower rating of 380HP, which is impressive in terms of increasing the strength and speed of your vehicle.
Going for the Bapmic 14411-AA700 increases your chances of giving your engine a better acceleration which translates to the more incredible overall performance of your car.
This is one of the factors to consider when buying turbochargers, as you would want to get the best out of your vehicle and engine.
Of course, the water and oil cooling systems work together for mechanical durability and lubricating the engine.
So, you don’t have to worry so much about your engine breaking down after a few months of heavy use. On the downside, the Bampmic 14411-AA700 doesn’t have an oil feed banjo fitting.
- Gaskets are good products
- Easy to install
- Effective turbo for the price
- No oil feed banjo fitting and coolant banjos for installation
02. Subaru STI IHI VF3- Best STI Turbo Upgrade
- Compatible with 2.0L WRX and 2.5L WRX STI models
- Equipped with factory actuator oil and coolant lines
- Direct drop-in
- With the proper tuning and modification, it is rated around 300WHP
The IHI VF series is a practical improvement option for 2.0 WRX automobile owners looking forward to gaining more power while still retaining OEM quality and fitment.
The IHI VF turbochargers are compatible with many automobile management base maps. With IHI VF, vehicle owners don’t need custom tuning in every situation.
Also, this turbocharger works perfectly well with 2.4L WRX models (2006-2007). Nevertheless, the gain is not as dramatic on the 2.0 models.
Despite the compatibility of the IHI VF 39 to 2.4L WRX models, the gain is not the same as that found on the 2.0 models.
This is because there will be a taper in the high RPM range of the larger displacement motor.
This is why it is advisable for STI owners should only consider these turbochargers as an upgrade or replacement to OEM only.
Like every other type of turbo upgrade, the IHI VF 39 series also requires that users fuel and tune upgrades to operate safely.
- Easy to install
- No need to retune after installation
- Perfect replacement for STI 2004-2006
- It needs fuel and periodic tune upgrades to operate efficiently.
03. JM Turbo- Best Turbo for WRX STI
- It comes with water and oil coolant
- 400hp horsepower rating
- Maximum power of 55HP
- Turbine housing at 8 cm2
The Tomioka Racing Twin Scroll Turbo line also stands out, especially for Subaru fans.
So, if you plan to upgrade your current twin-scroll on your Subaru using the best STI turbo, the twin-scroll turbo is the best way to go.
It is cost-effective with a high level of efficiency, especially if you plan on getting something on a budget.
Due to the high demand for twin-scroll, getting one in the open market can be difficult to grab. However, with the Tomioka Racing Twin Scroll, you can get something direct bolt-on.
With a TDO6 compartment and twin-scroll setup, Tomaika Turbo offers you the needed improvement compared to what is obtainable with the regular turbo.
- Great turbo for the price value
- Suitable for long driving distance
- Oil and water coolant offers users more flexibility
- Needs tuning to operate efficiently
- Has a small inlet and wastegate
04. Rev9Power TC-004 Big 16 TD05 Turbocharger Compatible with Subaru
- Uses oil and water coolant
- The horsepower rating of 300-380 hp bolt-on turbo
- It has an actuator set at 8 PSI
- WRX / STI 5 bolt downpipe type
- The diameter of the compressor wheel is 48.3 / 68mm
Rev9Power manufactures the TC-004 Big 16 TD05 Turbocharger, and it is compatible with the Subaru WRX GC8 EJ20 model of 1993 to 2001.
This best turbo upgrade for STI also serves as a perfect match for the Subaru WRX GC8 EJ20 model within the range of 2002 to 2007 Subaru WRX / STI EJ20 EJ25.
The TC-004 Big 16 TD05 Turbocharger comes with a Journal Bearing Compressor Wheel Diameter and 48.3 / 68mm TURBINE Wheel Diameter.
One of the best things about the TC-004 Big 16 TD05 turbo is that it ensures that the vehicle gains higher acceleration but doesn’t sacrifice overall efficiency.
So, there’s no doubt that you’ll be getting a lot more out of your car with this affordable turbocharger in your arsenal.
The oil and water coolant combo also adds to its mechanical durability, which you would need from your engine as you wouldn’t want it to crumble in a short time.
- Suitable for the price value
- No smoking
- No chemical uses
- Highly compatible with different Sub
- The coolant can work with oil and water
- Journal bearing compressor offers users comfortability
- Fitment is difficult to install without fabrication
05. Tuningsworld TD05-20G Strong Material Upgrade Turbocharger
- Lightweight at 15.67 pounds
- Can boost horsepower close to 420BHP
- Compatible with all Subaru IMPREZA WRX / STI EJ20 and EJ25 engine
Manufactured by Tuningsworld, the Tuningsworld Turbo Charger (TD05-20G Upgrade) is your best bet for the Subaru IMPREZA WAX/ STI EJ20 EJ25 engine, particularly the 2002 – 2006 model.
The turbocharger serves as a major upgrade for the Subaru turbo. With a horsepower close to 42BHP, you are definitely going to enjoy this latest development.
It is designed with a cast aluminum blade to ensure stable airtightness as well as to prevent corrosion.
Aside from casting aluminum, it has other strong materials such as cast iron, alloy, and deductible iron materials to ensure the turbocharger can withstand high oxidation.
And make it compatible with high temperatures, especially during summer.
- Good for the price
- Coolant is compatible with oil and water
- It builds up fast
- Strong materials make it fit high temperature
- Longevity in lifespan
- It can be fragile and needs to be handled with care
06. EMUSA TD04 Subaru All Brand TurboCharger
- It has a compact size of 16000 x 14 x 10 inches
- Compatible for 04 WRX and 02 WRX
It is manufactured by Emusa and with a dimension of 16000 x 14 x 10 inches.
With a manufacturer number part number of TC SB TD04 49377-04300-1, the TD04 is a perfect match for 2002-2007 Subaru Impreza WRX Forester XT NON-STI 49377-04300.
However, before buying the TD04, buyers must be aware that MHI is an abbreviation known as Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.
The TD04 is one of the MHI’s is the standard turbochargers used by several vehicles.
Also, the TD04L is available in different variations for buyers to choose from.
- Provide an increase in horsepower
- Help to minimize fuel consumption
- Available in various types
- You need a professional for the installation process
07. maXpeedingrods TD05 Solid Material Upgrade Turbocharger
- Maximum horsepower is 420HP
- Ductile iron turbo housing
- K418 alloy for stability
- Cast aluminum blade
- AEM intake
- DNA catted downpipe
- DNA headers
maXpeedingrods is a brand that specializes in using advanced manufacturing techniques to create high-performance engines and racing parts.
maXpeedingrods TD05 is an upgraded Turbo that is excellent for advanced drivers.
When customized to specifications, it serves as a replacement for the TD05H turbine wheel.
One way the maXpeedingrods improve exhaust efficiency is with the enlargement of the turbine housing area.
So, if you’re looking for a major boost of your vehicle’s power using the best turbo upgrade for STI, considering the maXpeedingrods TD05 is a good move.
It has impressive OEM quality with cast iron turbine housing that helps to withstand really high temperatures.
Apart from this, the steel turbine wheel is made from unique K418 alloy, which helps with temperature stability of up to 900℃ and high oxidation resistance.
Of course, we have to mention the corrosion resistance and gas tightness thanks to the cast aluminum blades.
- Cast iron housing can withstand high temperatures
- Turbo is strong and runs well
- No shaft shaking problems
- Cost-effective upgrade
- Great resistance to corrosion
- Can’t use it at the highest horsepower for a long time
- It doesn’t include waterlines and oil lines
08. Rev9 TC-077_2 VF48 Factory Spec Replacement Subaru Turbocharger
- Oil and water cooling
- Journal bearing system
- 18 PSI actuator set
- STI 5-Bolt Type
- 7cm nozzle
Rev9 is another reputable brand in the automotive industry that produces quality replacement parts for engines.
The Rev9 TC-077_2 VF48 turbo has an oil and water cooling system that adds more to the overall efficiency.
The water cooling system increases the mechanical durability of the engine, which in turn increases the lifespan of the turbocharger.
No one wants a turbo that gets damaged within a few months of usage. On the other hand, the oil is supplied in sufficient quantity to lubricate the engine alongside its cooling effect.
There’s also the journal bearing system in this best STI turbo upgrade which is much better than ball and roller bearings.
It helps your engine to manage overload better and not succumb to damage from shock. Overall, the Rev9 turbo meets our expectations in a lot of operational areas.
- Solidly built
- Smooth spooling
- High horsepower rating of 380HP
- Bolts up with no problem
- Must be installed by a professional
09. Labwork Turbo IHI RHF55 VF39 Subaru Turbocharger
- Outlet gasket
- Up to 225 horsepower
- Journal bearing
- Manifold gasket
- Oil cooling
- Maximum working pressure of 15 PSI
Another turbocharger to look out for is the Labwork turbo for Subaru Impreza.
This turbo has a ton of great features that help in providing excellent performance for your vehicle’s engine.
It’s no secret that turbochargers can emit high temperatures, and they would need a system to ensure that this doesn’t compromise the quality of your engine when in use.
This is why the Labwork turbo has its very own outlet gasket that comes with an effective seal for easy fit.
Best of all, this best STI turbo upgrade encourages a long and reliable lifespan for your engine since it’s able to withstand temperature fluctuations during turbo operation.
The manifold gasket in this Labwork turbo also plays a major role. One of them is to minimize engine misfires as it serves as a seal between different engine components.
Since this Labwork turbo has carefully assembled manifold gaskets which serve as a reliable seal, they also serve as seal engine coolant.
Of course, the high horsepower is a testament to the capabilities of this turbocharger.
- Durable cast housing
- High wheel load limit
- High quality
- Improves engine efficiency
- Must be installed by professionals
10. Zslssports HF55 Turbo 14411AA572 Turbocharger For Subaru
- OEM quality
- Journal bearing
- Water cooling
- Oil cooling
RHF55 turbo increases the ability of your vehicle to become faster and more powerful.
You don’t need your auto mechanic to tell you this, as you would already feel the difference when this gets installed in your car’s engine.
Apart from this, the RHF55 2015 STI turbo upgrade gives your vehicle the capacity for higher horsepower, much more than you can get from supercharging.
So, if you want to get the most out of your engine, getting this turbocharger is the way to go.
If you’re also an enthusiast for high engine efficiency and making the environment safer, turbo engines run on exhaust gas which means that nothing goes to waste in turbo mode.
Even with a smaller engine, you can get a lot of power from it without an upgrade.
- Superior fuel economy
- Low vibration
- Low noise
- Dust pileup in the pipe
Buying Considerations for the Best Turbo for STI
Are you planning on getting a turbocharger for your vehicle, here is some salient information you need to know about:
Look beyond the physical appearance
Before buying a turbocharger, one of the things you should consider before agreeing to buy from any manufacturer is the status.
The fact that the device looks neat based on its outward appearance does not mean it may not be damaged on the inside.
Some of the hidden damage could be caused by ingestion, foreign objects, usage, and debris from other damaged parts of the engine.
Also, there are instances where overheating and over boost can cause damage to the turbocharger. So, if you are buying one from any dealer, it is expected you check through properly.
However, if you don’t know much about turbochargers, then you should go along with a professional or someone with experience in buying automobile spare parts.
Shake to find out if there are more problems
Aside from checking the inner part, it is advisable you also subject the turbocharge to a simple test.
If, as a result of shaking, there is a problem, especially if the wheels are flopping around and the compressor wheel is not rotating as it should, then that is a red flag that the turbocharger is not in good condition.
Carefully inspect the compressor wheel
As a golden rule, whenever you are buying a turbocharger, always make it a duty to inspect the wheels.
This is important because bearing failure brings a high chance of having a compressor failure.
Never forget to check the edges of the compressor wheel
To enjoy any spec of WRX STI turbos, you need the compressor wheel in good condition.
Although compressor wheels are less expensive, you can reface them and clean them up when there is a stain on the surface.
However, one area you shouldn’t take with levity is the compressor edge. A proper working compressor should have a smooth edge all through.
So, if you check on the edges and feel some kind of click, something is wrong. This means the wheel is having contact with the housing.
To not waste your hard-earned resources, you request another turbocharger or check from another store.
Check if the turbine is in good condition
Turbochargers by design don’t have two-piece turbine shafts and heads.
So, if you are buying from any automobile store that detects it has two-piece turbine shafts, then it means something is wrong with fusion wield.
As a buyer, you should never accept a turbocharger in such a condition because what remains of it is mere scrap.
Uneven Bore Wobble
What if you are not buying a brand-new turbocharger, can you go for a used one? Yes, you can. It’s okay to buy a used turbocharger.
However, there are lots of factors to look out for.
For instance, when you are purchasing a turbocharger that has been in a car, it is important you are aware that the shaft and the wastegate port would have become wide open due to usage.
This can be a big issue, especially if it is close to a point and you still have open space on the wastegate port.
Instead of relying on the old turbocharger, it is better you find another one with a better shaft.
Most Important FAQs
Are you coming across a turbocharger for the first time? Here are some FAQs and answered questions that will increase your knowledge of what a turbocharger is all about:
How does a turbo work to fit a vehicle engine?
By design, the turbine and compressor are two major parts of a turbo, and you’ll find the turbine housing and turbine wheel here as well.
The turbine housing function is to ensure that the turbine wheel receives the exhaust gas.
The energy from the turbine wheel serves as a driving force for turning the turbine wheel, while the gas comes out of the turbine housing from the exhaust outlet.
Also, the exhaust is made up of the compressor housing and the compressor wheel. However, the function of the compressor housing is directly opposite to the turbine.
The compressor housing is usually attached to the turbine with the aid of a forged shaft.
So, whenever the turbine is operational, it turns the compressor wheel, while the high-velocity rolling takes air and compresses it.
Also, the compressor designed for housing will now convert the low pressure into a high velocity, high-pressure air stream through a process known as diffusion.
In the end, the compressed air is pushed into the engine, thus allowing the engine to generate more power.
What is a twin charger?
Compared to a single charger, a twin charger is a program with features that utilize a supercharger and a turbo.
Using a twin charger gives users the advantage of getting a quick response from using both superchargers and relying on turbo efficiency.
Is there a twin turbo?
Popularly known as bi-turbo or twin-turbo is a turbocharger designed with two distinctive turbochargers in the same engine.
The twin-turbo can work together or work separately at different RPMs.
Twin-turbo is primarily used in vehicles that use diesel engines and can be relied upon to combat lag without having any side effects.
What is a boost threshold?
Sometimes, most people get confused between boost threshold and turbo lag. From all indications, they have different functions.
The boost threshold is the minimum rpm that a vehicle engine relies upon to run on before kinetic energy sets in.
With the boost threshold in place, the vehicle engine can operate prior to when there is enough kinetic energy in the gas exhaust to compress the much-needed air going into the engine.
Furthermore, when the threshold is reduced, it improves throttle response and enables the STI turbo on WRX to function at a reduced rpm rate.
What is the function of an intercooler?
A turbocharger functions by increasing the pressure level inside an engine. By virtue of that, it also raises the range of temperature present in the engine.
Aside from the engine increase in the engine temperature level, the hot exhaust responsible for supplying gasses to spin the turbine also increases the temperature.
So, the engine may break down without an intercooler in place, or the vehicle gasket will get burnt.
An intercooler device helps both the engine and turbocharger maintain normal temperature by absorbing air, which helps the turbocharged engine run safely and keep it in good condition.
Key things to consider before buying a turbocharger?
Before buying a turbocharger, you need to put your budget, performance target, your vehicle capacity.
It is crucial you have a clear plan on the turbocharge type that will meet your goal on your budget. Then decide on the performance target of the turbocharger you plan on getting.
The reason is that switching to a new target halfway is not as easy. So, if your target is 400 or 300 BHP, it is better to stick to your plan.
No doubt about it, the best turbo for STI is just what you need to boost the power output of your engine, increase its efficiency and even help with fuel efficiency without any power increase.
Fuel efficiency is possible thanks to the ability of the turbo to recover waste energy in the exhaust and reuse it until all the fuel is completely burned.
All with a turbine-driven forced induction device, getting the best out of your engine is more possible now than ever.
However, to be sure that the turbo meets up to your expectations, you shouldn’t pick less than the best.
You can start your search with this carefully curated list of high-quality turbochargers for STI. All you have to do is pick anyone on this list and see how well it fits with your engine.
Originally from England, I’ve been repairing cars for over 16 years and am an automotive journalist. I’ve been working on cars for as long as I can remember, and it’s one of the best jobs I’ve ever had.
It is my intention to be your mechanic friend, that person who will assist you with any problem you may have with your vehicle and explain in detail how the problem can be fixed to you as soon as possible.
I produce and anchor a weekly auto news program. As well as providing insights into all things automotive, including expert analysis of the latest trends in the automotive industry, and ensuring you always know where to go for the latest automotive news, I also provide insight into all things automotive before the news breaks.
If I am not working, I am a riding motorcyclist and I do volunteer work with local charities whenever I have time. When I’m not riding my motorcycles or volunteering at local charities, you will find me at home in Portland, Oregon.