So you love rally? You’d like to take your car through the curves, slipping and sliding through gravel and mud-laden corners? The words “Lift, turn, brake, step on the gas…” from rally school mean the world to you? What’s holding you back?
Most likely, it’s the possible damage that rally courses can do to your beloved ride. Or the price of underbody protection may be quite ridiculous to you.
Fear not! There’s a way to do things DIY (Do-It-Yourself). Below is an example of how you can get it done yourself. Big thanks goes out to the folks at ClubWRX.net and DirtyImpreza.com.
The Impreza shown below already has an aluminum Skid Plate that protects the engine bay, mud flaps, and a differential protector. The owner though that the car was already well protected, that is, until a massive rock almost punched a hole through the exhaust system.
Subaru Impreza Underbody with Engine Skid Plate
Subaru Impreza Underbody with Exposed Exhaust Pipe
Subaru Impreza Underbody with Dented Exhaust Pipe
So he decided to create a skid plate to protect the catalytic converter and exhaust pipe. This version is made from a 3ft by 3ft piece of 1/4-inch HDPE (High-Density Polyethylene), the same material used for your regular household chopping boards. Though you can also create one from aluminum or steel, it is easier to “slide” HDPE if you get hung up on rocks.
Here’s the cut up HDPE Underbody Skid Plate with custom Heat Shield to protect it from the hot exhaust pipe
Here’s the HDPE Skid Plate mounted on the subframe along with the Aluminum Engine Skid Plate
Here’s what it looks like from the bottom
Here’s what it looks like when it’s finally mounted back on the Impreza:
Here’s what it looks like from the rear corner of the car. It’s tied to the exhaust pipe as there’s no place to mount it to. Perhaps to improve this, you could create a rear subframe assembly, and use flush-mounted screws so you don’t sheer of any bolts if you scrape any rocks.
Do you have any versions that you’ve done yourself? Feel free to share it on the comments section below. Thanks!