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DarkMatterX - 2022 WRX

DARKMATTERX DM-2 Shifter Install on our 2022 WRX w/ Company Feature!

Written by: The Modfather



Time to read 5 min

We interact each day with a large percentage of the Subaru enthusiast community which includes the average daily driver, the obsessed brand lover, and the performance motorsport practitioner. Our conversations span from their victories to the extreme frustrations and challenges they face when modifying their vehicles. Subimods recently featured the installation of the DARKMATTERX DM-2 Shifter Assembly during one of our new product segments using one of our company vehicles, the 2022 Subaru WRX, as the guinea pig. DARKMATTERX provides a robust assembly that stands alone from other products of its type by delivering a smart solution to the performance market. During our product video segment (below), Subimods Product Expert Justin provides a clear overview of the assembly while showing how DARKMATTERX allows the knowledgeable enthusiast to install the product using very common automotive tools with minimal difficulty. 


A large percentage of the Subaru enthusiast community cherish the 2022 WRX - but will also share details about every single frustration related to manufacturing and engineering missteps. They are very verbal about design flaws they feel were not addressed by the manufacturer before the car was released into the market. The Subimods team is well-versed on these subjects since finding solutions and working with the Subaru community is the core of our business. The primary grievance shared by WRX drivers confirms a sloppy, lackluster feel between the hand of the driver and the vehicle’s DX cable transmission. This is a serious feeling that washes out the expected high-performance shifting experience that should be delivered by this car. DARKMATTERX has designed and engineered a CNC machined Billet aluminum shifter assembly to replace the plastic factory assembly that came stock with the 2022 WRX which left many drivers feeling less than satisfied with the OEM shifting feel and performance. DARKMATTERX brings an aftermarket shift assembly to the table which is positioned to bring the driver back to their highly anticipated and responsive connection with the vehicle they cherish.


DARKMATTERX is a veteran-owned and operated organization that takes pride in their smart design methodology, their quality engineering, and the precision manufacturing that shines brightly through their American-made performance solutions. DARKMATTERX President and Owner, Erik Grassauer , has invested years of research, development, and laser-focused effort in the engineering of quality and stability. DARKMATTERX manufacturers the shifter components in house before they are assembled to ensure the precision and solid feel while performing. 

“A lot of those shifters just wear out over time”, Grassauer explains in the company’s promotional video, “The actual pivot of it expands and contracts. It's just…full of grease. It's just cheaply manufactured…which is understandable. It's being mass-produced in cars. My solution…a chassis mounted shifter design just creates…a really, solid foundation.” In our recent evaluation and installation, we can clearly see that Grassauer and his team have successfully woven in the spirit of connection between driver and vehicle into their product. This company and its methodology was born in the heart of Grassauer, a United States Navy veteran who proudly stands behind the quality engineering and manufacturing of his products.

“What I like best is having freedom in my work and knowing that I'm getting out what I put into it”, Erik said. “Starting this venture has really been a conduit for me to overcome challenges on a daily basis which gives me meaning in my work and a sense of accomplishment.”


During a recent email conversation with Grassauer, we learned that inspiration came early while he observed the passion for cars spread throughout his entire family growing up. Between watching his older brother build a motor in his bedroom and the love his cousins had for a modified 2001 Impreza, Erik was hooked for life as he grew a business with a desire to make a difference. 

"I'm passionate about everything in this process from the design, testing, manufacturing and conveying this information to the community in the form of content", Erik explains, "I love my country and spent about six years in the Navy. I believe in building value in America and supporting my local economy. Doing this continues to add purpose to my life and is the reason I don't outsource any production." Grassauer believes that their spirit of difference flows through their focus on one specific element of a car compounded with the public awareness of what goes into the creation of one of their products. 

Most importantly, Erik and his team never take their eyes off growth and new product development. "Right now, the 'Subaru Precision Shift Arm' is launching...a major upgrade for one of Subaru's factory shifters", Erik announced proudly. "DARKMATTERX advances shifting technology through "first principles" thinking," Grassauer confirms. "The solutions derived from this gives the end user the best shifting experience with their vehicle. This is the sole purpose of why this company was started and continues to diversify us in the market."


Spending a few hours in the Subimods shop, from opening a product’s box to completing and documenting an install, is a perfect way for our team to not only educate the Subaru community about new and exciting products, but, most importantly, serves to educate our team with hands-on experience and a complete overview of innovative performance solutions. Grassauer and the DARKMATTERX team realize the versatility, flexibility, and value of this product through its ease of installation, thoughtful adjustment capabilities, and the overall satisfaction felt in the driving experience. One feature that stands alone in this category is the logically designed exposed boot collar which allows any driver to change the shift position with a simple turn adjusting the height of the shifter without the need of any tools. “Buy this shifter and you can just pull your old OEM shifter out…and you can mount this straight into the car. There's zero modification…”, explains Grassauer.

The Subimods team learned quickly that the DARKMATTERX DM-2 Shifter Assembly is not a standard shifter upgrade - but could be described by an expert enthusiast as the “ultimate shifter upgrade for the 2022 Subaru WRX”, as noted by Justin Rancourt at the end of our installation. Noting that the DARKMATTERX shifter is priced around $1,300, Rancourt explained his feelings after our product evaluation. “I feel like there's no real comparison in the market for what this product has to offer”, he said. “Coming from someone who loves performance driving…I feel like this really does change the feel and vibe of the cable shifted transmission. All in all, well worth the investment in my opinion.” Anyone who is looking for more than just an improved driving experience but a solid, positive, and noticeable enhancement to the physical connection with their car will benefit from the addition of the DARKMATTERX Shifter to their WRX platform. 

Learn more details regarding the DARKMATTERX DM-2 Shifter Assembly and the Subimods product installation by watching the “DARKMATTERX - DM-2: The Ultimate Shifter - 2022 WRX Installation Guide” video (above), where you can see step by step product install details and informative overview commentary provided by Subimods Product Expert Justin. 

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