Subaru Model Codes and What They Really Mean

Another com­monly asked ques­tion is whether or not some­one owns a GC8. Lots of peo­ple think they do! But John from NASIOC breaks it down for us:

A lot of peo­ple throw around GC8, BC/​BF, GGA, GDB, etc, but often times peo­ple don’t really know what they mean. These are chassis/​engine com­bi­na­tions for var­i­ous model codes of Sub­arus. Some of these terms are being used inter­changably, when they must be uniquely identified.

When refer­ring to a chas­sis alone, you use the first two char­ac­ters of the model code.


1993–2001 Impreza Chas­sis:
Sedan: GC
Coupe: GM
Wagon: GF



2002 — 2007 Impreza Chas­sis:
Sedan: GD
Wagon: GG


2007 — 2013 Impreza Chas­sis:
Sedan: GE
Hatch: GH
Wide­body hatch: GR
Wide­body sedan: GV


1990–1994 Legacy Chas­sis:
Sedan: BC
Wagon: BF
(Yes, the C and F indi­cate the same chas­sis as Imprezas)



1995–1999 Legacy Chas­sis:
Sedan: BD
Out­back Wagon: BG (Raised roof)
Wagon: BK


2000+ Legacy Chas­sis:
Sedan: BE
Wagon: BH


Forester Chas­sis:
1998–2002: SF
2003–2008: SG
2008–2013: SH


SVX Chas­sis:
1992–1997: CX

The third char­ac­ter refers to the engine that par­tic­u­lar chas­sis was equipped with from the fac­tory. The engine code itself implies engine size, con­fig­u­ra­tion, and other things like radi­a­tor type and cross­mem­ber used.

Due to some con­fu­sion on the VIN ver­sus the applied model code, the table has been revised to show Model Codes and VINs.

Applied Model Codes:
1.8L (NA-​Impreza): 5 (ie: GC5 is a 1.8L Impreza Sedan)
2.0L (pre-​MY01 WRX): 8 (ie: GC8 is a 2.0L Impreza WRX Sedan)
2.0L (MY01+ WRX): A (ie: GGA is a 2.0L Impreza WRX Wagon)
2.0L (MY02+ WRX STi): B (ie: GDB is a 2.0L Impreza WRX STi Sedan)
2.2L (NA): C (ie: GFC is a 2.2L Impreza Wagon)
2.5L (NA-​Impreza): E (ie: GME is a 2.5L Impreza Coupe)
2.5L (NA-​Legacy): 6 (ie: BE6 is a 2.5L Legacy Sedan)
2.5L (XT): 6 (ie: SG6 is a 2.5L Forester XT)
2.5L (STi): 6 (ie: GD6 is a 2.5L Impreza WRX STi Sedan)
3.0L (H6): 9 (ie: BE9 is a 3.0L Legacy Sedan)

VIN Chas­sis Codes:
1.8L: 2 (ie: GC2 is a 1.8L Impreza Sedan)
2.0L: 2 (ie: GD2 is a 2.0L Impreza WRX Sedan)
2.2L: 4 (ie: GF4 is a 2.2L Impreza Wagon)
2.5L (NA and XT): 6 (ie: GM6 is a 2.5L Impreza Coupe)
2.5L (STi): 7 (ie: GD7 is a 2.5L Impreza WRX STi Sedan)
3.0L (H6): 8 (ie: BH8 Is a 3.0L Legacy Wagon)
3.3L (H6): 3 (ie: CX3 is a 3.3L SVX)

Some of this infor­ma­tion is triv­ial, but in some cases being spe­cific will ensure the cor­rect answer to your question.

Spe­cific model code indi­ca­tion required:
If you are request­ing fit­ment of a radi­a­tor into a GFA, there are two things to con­sider: GF indi­cates pre-​MY02 Impreza chas­sis, while A indi­cates it is a 2.0L turbo engine. For a ven­dor to sim­ply reply say­ing that, yes, they have a GC8 radi­a­tor ( when it is really a GC4/​6 radi­a­tor) does NOTmean it will apply to your appli­ca­tion. It does means it will fit the GC/​GF chas­sis, how­ever. Since you have a turbo engine (A), it means you prob­a­bly do not want a radi­a­tor designed for a nat­u­rally aspi­rated engine (6).

Spe­cific model code indi­ca­tion not required:
If you ask if a STi V6 dri­ve­train will fit into a GC8 chas­sis, then of course it will. That is the exact car the engine is in. How­ever, if you are ask­ing if it will fit into a GC/​GF chas­sis (or maybe justGF4 specif­i­cally), then your ques­tion is less ambigu­ous as to what you are try­ing to do. How­ever, it is obvi­ous to see what is being asked.


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