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Barn finds come in all shapes and sizes. But usually, these abandoned cars are at least 30 years old. Sometimes, though, you find a car forgotten in a barn that’s far newer than you average forlorn classic. This Subaru WRX is no more than 13 years old, and it too has succumbed to a life of neglect. Thankfully the folks from WD Detailing are here to revive this sport sedan from its five-year slumber and give it a new lease on life.

The wide, boxy fenders identify this WRX as being from a model year anywhere from 2011 to 2014. These models received a more aggressive body with cues similar to the contemporary WRX STI. These cars were well-equipped from the factory, with an EJ255 turbocharged 2.5-liter flat four-cylinder engine making 265 horsepower and 244 pound-feet.

According to WD Detailing, the most recent owner of this WRX parked it due to a radiator issue severe enough to cause the engine to stall. That’s not much info, but all signs point to an overheating problem. Beyond the powertrain troubles, the car’s front bumper is hanging on by a thread. There’s a big dent on the driver’s side fender, too.

The truth is revealed when WD Detailing crew tries to get the engine running. The oil dipstick comes out bone dry—not a good sign. After filling the block with lubricant and turning the key, the starter makes a banging sound. Putting a wrench on the crankshaft reveals a seized engine.

This is, of course, commonplace for the Subaru EJ255. This particular engine has some known issues, including rod bearing failures and cracked pistons. Subaru settled a class-action lawsuit regarding engine failures in 2012 – 2017 WRX or STI models with this power plant. So it’s no surprise to see this one dead in the water.

Disastrous drivetrain aside, WD Detailing makes the WRX look visually fantastic, performing a thorough cleaning of the body and interior. They also fix the body imperfections, banging out the dented fender with a rubber mallet and using light block sanding to remove some of the scratches from the body.

Thankfully there’s a happy ending after all of this work. WD Detailing’s cameraman wanted to buy the WRX and swap out the engine. Instead, the guys from the company purchased the vehicle and gave it to him as a gift for his hard work. 

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