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Subaru WRX Transmissions: Overview, Problems, Fluids

Subaru WRX Transmissions: Overview, Problems, Fluids

On this blog, we’ve written extensively about the Subaru WRX and its various features. Today we’re going to have an in-depth look at the transmissions that are used in the different generations of the WRX. Let’s start with a quick answer:

Subaru WRX has used the 6-speed TY75 and TY85 manual transmissions and Lineartronic TR690 CVT in the first generation. In its second generation, it is likely to use 6-speed manual transmission and Subaru Performance CVT.

We begin to admit that the above text is meant to provide a compact overview. Thus, it is insufficient to understand transmissions that went inside the Subaru WRX. Hence, we will see transmissions with different dimensions to understand several models the Subaru WRX has incorporated throughout its evolution. Additionally, we will take a look at the cost of replacement and their durability. We will also find out the problems that emerge on and off during the lifetime of those transmissions. So, here we begin.

Also read: Types Of Gas A Subaru Impreza Takes (Also WRX)

What Transmissions Has The Subaru WRX Used?

Let us see different transmissions the Subaru WRX has used throughout its journey.

First Generation (2014-2021)

  • 6-speed TY75 manual
  • 6-speed TY85 manual
  • Lineartronic TR690 CVT

Second Generation (2022 To Commence)

  • 6-speed manual
  • Subaru Performance CVT

How Long Does A Subaru WRX Transmission Last?

For starters, the durability of the transmission depends on the kind of it. Besides, how well you maintain also plays a significant part in deciding how long it lasts. On average, however, it can last as long as 300,000 miles.

Also read: How Many Miles Can A Subaru WRX Last? (Answered)

How Much Does A Subaru WRX Transmission Cost?

Has your transmission got impaired, and are you looking to replace your old transmission with the new one? In that case, it is essential to learn about the prices of different transmissions. For your ease, we provide you with an overview of it.

  • 6-speed TY75 manual: $1,989.99 (eBay)
  • 6-speed TY85 manual: $3663.04 (eBay)
  • Lineartronic TR690 CVT: $375.99 (eBay)
  • Subaru Performance CVT: $7,000-8,000 (Guesstimate)

Also read: The Exact Bolt Pattern Of A Subaru WRX (& STI)

Common Subaru WRX Transmission Problems

Let us go through some common problems regarding transmissions that Subaru WRX drivers face while driving. So, here we see one by one.


  • There are complaints that the transmission would suddenly not go into gear from neutral. It may begin working fine after a driver turns the engine off.
  • A driver may hear noise and feel a shudder when an attempt is made to start the engine by putting a car into first gear while the engine is turned off. As soon as the engine starts, however, the gear may remain in neutral gear.
  • A problem usually goes away when a driver keeps the engine off for 5 minutes. When a car is ignited again, it works fine as though the issue never existed.
  • The transmission may not go back into neutral gear. It requires minimal resistance to push it into neutral without the need for clutch action.


  • The TY85 transmission can reveal a wide range of problems. It includes shifting delays, a feeling of shakiness, and grinding when accelerating. It may also make noises or emit a burning smell from beneath the hood.
  • The fuel economy may reduce due to the transmission problems staying for longer without applying any remedy.
  • It is good to avoid towing any vehicle since it can cause trouble for the transmission. While towing a car, you never know when you begin defying the towing capacity.  
  • Leaks may also happen, but it is easy to spot and cheap to fix. Caring for the transmission fluid is a sustainable way to help it perform for longer.


  • A driver may begin confronting problems after the standard warranty of 60,000 miles expires.
  • For instance, the transmission may start giving shudders when slowing down.
  • On some occasions, the occasional stalls and hesitations may also show up in the combination of shaking.
  • The TR690 CVT may knock and jerk when the engine is idling.

Subaru Performance CVT

  • There are complaints that it can come to a sudden stop. Sometimes, even the vehicle does not turn on again.
  • A car can shudder, provided that the pulley or belt stops working correctly.
  • Another common problem that stems from CVT transmission is loud noises.
  • Furthermore, a car may pause for a moment when a driver presses the gas pedal.
  • Some drivers have experienced problems related to fluid leaking and seepage. It is a sealant used on the input shaft oil seal and oil pump chain cover of CVT that cause seepage.

Also read: Absolute Best Years Of The Subaru Impreza

Differences Between Transmissions

The TY75 is a 6-speed manual transmission. It contains six forward gears and one reverse gear. Except for reverse, the rest of the gears have synchromesh engagement. In 1984, it was installed for the first time in third-generation Leone. Over the years, it has undergone several improvements.

Unlike the TY75 that is not close-ratio, the TY85 is a fully synchronized close-ratio 6-speed manual transmission. Nonetheless, it also contains six forward gears and one reverse gear. But again, the rest of its gears, excluding reverse, also have synchromesh engagement.

Lineartronic CVT of Subaru was initially made available in the fifth generation of Outback and Legacy. Its design leverages two hydraulically operated pulleys affixed by a metal chain. Its metal is robust, and it also reduces annoying noise. Hence, it is overall a fine transmission.

It is a Subaru Performance CVT that smoothly changes through a range of gear ratios. Undoubtedly, it is reliable because it has a durable metal chain and a simple pulley system. Compared to other CVT designs, it is a quieter CVT. 

Transmission Fluids And The Subaru WRX

Car manufacturers often recommend changing transmission fluid every 45,000 miles as far as transmission fluids are concerned. But, it is essential to note that separate transmissions need different types of transmission fluid. For your ease, we give you the source of the transmission fluids that work well with various transmissions of the Subaru WRX.


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