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New Here, V8 Commodore Boy... Interested In Stagea's.


projectstagea
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Hi all,

first off, the names ryan. im a V8 commodore boy at heart. im on my 3rd commodore now, a VS V8 Calais. now ive always planned to get myself a VT/VX HSV R8 when i left uni next year, but i recently ran across my first stagea the other sunday, and to say i was impressed was an understatment! fastest looking wagon i think ive ever seen. ive been doing a little stagea digging and i think the stagea i saw has a full Autech kit fitted and was a S1. after a bit more reseach online i saw a few pics of the R34 front end conversion some people do and i think i loved it a little more.

so i have a few questions, keep in mind im a bit of a skyline noob. i know my skyline models but not much about RB engines. as you can tell ive never had a VL :fakenopic:

Im thinking if i was to look into getting a stagea id be after a white S2 RSfour? so id get the 4WD and the RB25DET NEO engine? as this is a better engine than the RB25DET in the S1? please correct me if im wrong. do a few choice mods and get the front convereted to R34 (R34 GTR front minus the GT-R badges of course and Autech sideskirts and rear skirt/wing)

so...

Q1. What can you guys tell me about stageas? from a drivers perspective? public perspective?

Q2. What are the usual bread and butter mods to do to a stock RB25DET/NEO? and how much do they cost? for example, im from the commodore V8 background and the usual mods for a stock LS1's are OTR CAI, Mafless tune, 4-1 extractors, twin 2.5" exhaust all for around $5K. thats the usual. what the hell do you do to a RB engine

Q3. insurance? how does that go with it being an import?

Q4. how much does a full R34 front conversion cost? who would do that in VIC?

Q5. anything else you guys can tell a stagea noob?

Regards,

Ryan.

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Hi Ryan,

Welcome to the dark side!

Try a search, most of your questions have been answered a few times already, and by some very knowledgeable people that might respond to you directly here, so it is worth it trust me.

Everyone here loves Stageas pretty much so we will tell you they are great!

They are actually still reasonably rare so finding a shop front that will do a 34 conversion for you in VIC is a bit of a stretch, some of the parts are now being sold by DMD the image in QLD I believe.

Cheers

Luke

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I had a very late model VR V8 BT-1 excop (unbadged SS) sedan, 215kw

tuned, worked slightly, etc. Owned it for 5yrs.

Stagea is by far the better car. Bit of tuning works and it blows away my ex V8 in every aspect. Stagea is my 10yr car+, see no other need to ever owning something else.

Neo engine is newer, slightly revised. But at end of the day S1 and S2, once modded, very little difference in it.

exhaust would be 3inch fron turbo to cat converter ($220), highflow 3" cat ($200), cat back system, 3inch with straight thru muffler ($400?), add larger front mount intercooler, add highflow panel filter, add adjustable fuel pressure regulator, add larger fuel pump, add piggybacks for tuning such as an apexi SAFC / SITC combo, along with highflowed turbocharger, looking at an easy 200awkw there.

Insurance is same for stagea as for commodore, for me. Thru Shannons

have a troll thru the forums.......

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and.. if you give it a bootful in the wet you wont spin out and crash into a tree hahahaha

no seriously.. my ideas on the stagea are

A) I like the shape - and they are not a common car to be seen on the roads.

B) have a fair bit of power behind them

c) are extremely surefooted in the wet.. probably the safest car I have driven in the wet.

d) very luxurious if you get leather trim etc.

is there any particular reason you want to do the r34 front end conversion ?just for looks?

if so .. check out the autech body kitted stageas. I have one and I do like the kit , and its fairly uncommon car to see around.

If you spend a bit of $$$ on it you will definately get the horsepower up - just beware of the other things that might not deal with the extra horsepower.. ie drivetrain etc.

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yeah ive seen pics of the Autech kitted Stagea's and they do look pretty hot.

if i hadnt of seen this pic below i think that would be the only choice for the kit.

ive always liked the look of the R34. but wasnt keen on a 2 door. hence, R34 fronted stagea. heres the pic that swayed me. dont get me wrong, the Autech stagea front does look shithot. and if the R34 conversion was ridicioulsy (spelling) expensive i wouldnt bother... let the pic do the talking i guess.

its the only R34 converted stagea i could find online in a hurry.

it wonrt be till next year, so ive got lots of time to research up and decide - HSV vs Stagea.

post-40764-1185333308_thumb.jpg

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dont forget you have approx 3 -4 months lead time before you get the stagea .. so build that into your calculations. Other thing is maybe go see if you can take one for a test drive.. just to see what it feels like .. you never know theremight be one little thing that really pisses you off

or see if someone on here is near you and get them to take you for a spin

where abouts are you located anyways?

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welcome to the weird world of wagons!!

once u drive one/experience one, i swear you will never look back.

Q1. What can you guys tell me about stageas? from a drivers perspective? public perspective?

You will get looks from people, and their expressions will be, wtf?! alot of people (ok, everyone) calls them volvo's. i personally dont see anything in it. they are fantastic to drive.

Q2. What are the usual bread and butter mods to do to a stock RB25DET/NEO? and how much do they cost? for example, im from the commodore V8 background and the usual mods for a stock LS1's are OTR CAI, Mafless tune, 4-1 extractors, twin 2.5" exhaust all for around $5K. thats the usual. what the hell do you do to a RB engine

get your self a free flowing exhaust 3" from the turbo back, with a hi-flow cat. a must get is a Piggyback computer such as an SAFC2 or an AFC neo, and the rare as rocking horse shit, SITC timing computer. if you can get a PFC to work, then go for that. as for ain intercooler, you can either get a FMIC kit or get a side mount cooler from an R34 GTT. works just as good.

Q3. insurance? how does that go with it being an import?

im 22, almost 23. ive been dicked around by insurance companies. at the moment im with young and cool, and im paying 1500 a year, or 140 a month.

Q4. how much does a full R34 front conversion cost? who would do that in VIC?

ask darrinspencer on these forums

hope that helps.

cheers

Jarryd

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Ive got a 1997 Series 1 RS-Four V prime edition

mine has extras such as leather, electric seats, woodgrain inserts, dual sunroofs etc...

i f**kin love it.

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Q1. What can you guys tell me about stageas? from a drivers perspective? public perspective?

Q2. What are the usual bread and butter mods to do to a stock RB25DET/NEO? and how much do they cost? for example, im from the commodore V8 background and the usual mods for a stock LS1's are OTR CAI, Mafless tune, 4-1 extractors, twin 2.5" exhaust all for around $5K. thats the usual. what the hell do you do to a RB engine

Q3. insurance? how does that go with it being an import?

Q4. how much does a full R34 front conversion cost? who would do that in VIC?

Q5. anything else you guys can tell a stagea noob?

Regards,

Ryan.

My turn for a answer

Q2. Depends how much power you want. Stay to approx upto on a NEO 200awkw and you can do with stock turbo and injectors. If you want more, say 250awkw then the price doubles with new turbo, injectors and replacement ecu.

Q3. I just paided $1153 a year for large list of mods incl R34 front and 300kw at engine and a car value of $25k and I am 34

Q4. I have done the front conversion, budget on $4.5k for parts, plus labour and painting approx $2K, sell your old front for $1.5-2k

Q5. They are big and heavy

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My first car was a VL commo which my parents bought me for travelling to uni at the time. Later I bought my own nissan silvia n/a and I've gotta say the difference in ride quality, power delivery and just the overall experience is just huge! I loved the silvia so much I'm now hooked on nissan imports :) - since then I've owned a second silvia (turbo this time) and now the Stagea.

The stagea is by far the most comfortable to drive and its performance now would rival that of my turbo silvia (stagea has ~160awkw, silvia had 133rwkw).

Comparing the stagea to a HSV isn't worth your time IMO. The only thing the HSV can match the stagea in is straight line performance, and maybe comfort...and of course this is my opinion, but I'd say in most other aspects the stagea would be a better car to drive all-round. Better handling, brakes, drivetrain, and I would suggest it would be more fun to drive. Turbo cars will accelerate much quicker than a similarly powered n/a car, although the 1/4mile times could still be similar due to turbo lag etc. but for normal driving, if you're already in gear then turbo lag doesn't exist and the car will feel a lot more responsive due to the ability of the turbo to build the engine's revs very quickly.

The differences between RB25DET and RB25DET NEO is improved VVT (better midrange), and approx 20kw more although this is partly due to the different turbo. One may argue that the differences between the two engines is not worth the difference in price...its your call in the end.

The other advantages the stagea will give you is AWD, more boot space, A LOT of attention from pedestrians and other drivers, and a lot of driving fun. :(

If you just want simple mods, an exhaust, SAFC & boost controller on a S2 stagea will give you ~150awkw at 11-12psi (the stock turbo wont take more than about 14psi before shattering). This should only cost you about $1500-2000 if you buy everything brand new. Add a Front Mount InterCooler (FMIC), fuel pressure regulators (or some other way to adjust fuel pressure), bigger fuel pump, Z32 Air Flow Meter (AFM), SITC, bigger turbo, and bigger brakes (you'll need these), and as tangles mentioned you'll be looking at 200+ awkw at ~16-18psi(?) for a total of $5000-6000 plus the cost of the car, depending on where u get stuff from etc. A good hi-flow turbo may cost you several thousand $ or otherwise there are very good cheaper models getting around - see sliding performance (username slide on this forum) for more info...

Good luck with your decision, hope to see pics of your stagea WHEN you buy it :)

BTW if you want to compare power-weight ratios etc. add ~20kw to the awkw figure to get rwkw. Its not a 100% accurate conversion but its pretty close. If you remove the front driveshaft of a stagea making it RWD only, it will give about 20kw more than the awkw reading...and AWD has more benefit than any drivetrain loss. :)

Edited by pixel8r
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I'd like to add that the best thing for me (S2 2000 RS4) was that the boss wifey had no idea we were getting such a quick/fun car when I finally folded and agreed to buy a wagon for the fam. Now everytime I accelerate a bit quicker then usual my 2 yr old shouts "BOOOOOST!!!"

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yes, welcome to the dark side..... You need to go for a drive in one.....plain and simple. All the forum banter in the world means nothing if you find its not the car for you. I found they are a lot heavier to drive than a VS, and they don't quite have that meaty off-the-line torque that the old Buick(?) 6 has, but they are enormously better put together than any Holden/HSV product of similar year. Going from a Supra, I found the Stagea very understeery, and it has ridiculously light and vague steering, compared to my last car, but for all that, I love my Stag..... There's something about walking quietly and carrying a big stick that is so appealing. Take it from me, they can be an absolute missile with the right work done to them, and they can handle and stop much better than you would ever assume by looking at them..... Do yourself a favour, and get a drive in one. Lie, cheat, beg....whatever, but a decent drive in one will sell you on them, especially if the one you drive has the basic mods mentioned by the rest of these guys.... they know their stuff.

Good luck with it all. Let us know how you go, either way (you'll be back! They all come back....)

:)

Edited by rb26stagea
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RS4S is manual, it costs more than an auto but there are a few extra trick bits that the autos don't have and a wider range of after market engine management choices.

or 260RS if you have deeper pockets.

Edited by wolverine
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or 260RS if you have deeper pockets.

Actually, depending on how much power you want, a 260RS may actually be the cheaper option.

And speaking of power, if you're after easy power gains, the 260RS may be your best option too. 200awkw is very easy to reach with the RB26DETT, the same engine the powers the R33GTR. Even without mods, I believe they will do a low 14s or even high 13s 1/4 mile.

They're listed as 206kw, same as the GTR, but do a search on this forum and you'll find that the real power figure is a lot higher. :(

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