1991 Honda Civic Si 2.0 Civic CX 1.5L 70 HP from North America


Perfect car for teenagers who want fast cars for cheap, and also very reliable


The car runs rich, shot black soot out the exhaust when I got it; that has a lot to do with the setup. Cheesecloth in the fuel pressure regulator vacuum lines fixed the problem until the swap comes.

A few tears in the seats, otherwise good condition.

Somehow the engine was replaced with a 1995 Civic CX 70 HP motor before I got it, but I didn't buy the car for the engine, I bought it for the body.

General Comments:

Even though the car only has 70 HP, it still accelerates faster than my 2001 Sunfire.

Lowered about 2" on Tein coilovers. Handles excellently and stays firmly planted around corners even at 35-45 MPH. Excellent for making yellow lights :).

The seats are incredible. I especially like the support adjustments that come on the Si's.

I plan to put a 130 HP Acura Integra LS engine in the car this winter. A few of my friends have done this and have been able to outrun Mustang GT's, Subaru WRX's, and a whole host of other cars. One even outran a Dodge Viper with a turbo setup (think he ran 13.2 @ 105 MPH last 1/4 mile track test). Engine swaps are very easy (bolts directly in, no welding required) and very cheap ($1100 for full swap kit), which is my main reason for buying the car.

All this, and I also get 35 MPG city driving. The tank takes ~$18 to fill up at the pump. Very economical choice for poor teenager, all while having available power stated above.

The car runs EXTREMELY well, like the day it was driven off the lot.

Very roomy, especially in back. The car has more rear legroom than do most brand new compact cars, even the new Civic.

This car has more aftermarket parts available for it than any other make of car to my knowledge.

All in all, I gave away a 2001 Sunfire ($8500) that my parents bought me to my sister after not being allowed to sell it, and got this car for $1200. Loving every single minute of it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th October, 2004

3rd Jun 2007, 20:01

First, there is no way any of your friends outran a viper with a 130 hp civic.

I owned a 89 civic hatch too. If you really do have an Si, you have 106 hp, not 70. Only the base civic hatch that only came with a 4-spd manual trans had 70 hp.

Yeah, civics are fun to drive cause they have great steering feel and peppy engines. But they aren't fast, you can make them quick, but they aren't designed for that either.

11th Nov 2007, 03:40

I think the writer was saying that his friend outran a viper with an LS turbo setup. This is a mid 90s 1.8L non vtec engine with aftermarket turbo stuff. Possible, though I still doubt that he outran a viper. B18c, H or k series engines plus turbo will make a for a better race with the viper...

14th May 2008, 07:31

Where do you get such a cheep engine swap for your civic?

1991 Honda Civic LX 1.5 from North America


Economical and comfortable to drive


The timing belt snapped while driving on the freeway in 1997. I was in the process of accelerating to normal cruise speed (55 miles per hour) when I lost power. Amazingly the engine survived!I replaced it at the Honda dealer and the car continued to drive wonderfully.

I recently replaced the second timing belt, but something else malfunctioned.

And that malfunction was due to a bad piston ring which cracked. The engine now runs roughly with oil burning and reduced power. A splitshot plug placed within the bad cylinder makes little difference in performance. A local mechanic indicated that the only solution is to rebuild the old engine or replace it.

A third problem was the tendency of the tail light fixtures to fill up with rainwater and burn out the bulbs. I replaced quite a few of these bulbs until I replaced the fixture gasket and re-tightened it carefully. This problem has been gone for nearly six years now.

General Comments:

After more than ten years and nearly 187,000 miles of driving, my 1991 Honda Civic sedan is no more. It is very unfortunate for it has been my only Honda and I bought it from my sister who acquired it at a dealer in Bakersfield, California in 1991. She gave me a great deal on purchase. I just paid $4500.00 for it. And this was in 1994. The car had 76,000 miles on the odometer at the time.

It is both a smooth driving and very comfortable vehicle. The body is in fairly good shape. Only some extensive rust around one of the wheel wells. The paint while pretty (it is called Celestial Blue Pearl) has a bad tendency to peel. Most of it is gone from the top of the car. I got the rear of the car fixed and repainted in 1997 after someone damaged my trunk while a waiting at a stoplight. That makes the car look real nice. Almost brand new!

Some interior fabric that is exposed to the sun has faded, but the rest looks very good since I made use of car seat covers and sunshades.

I had hoped this car would make it to 200,000 miles, but the cracked piston ring within one the of cylinders causes the vehicle to run roughly while doing stop-and-go driving within the city limits. It drives better and more smoothly on the freeway. I will miss this car very much, that is, unless I can sell my 1992 Toyota Corolla (80,000 miles on the odometer) for enough to replace with a new engine. But I think that is unrealistic.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th July, 2004

4th Dec 2004, 21:50

I too had A 1991 Honda Civic it was a reliable car till the oil burning started at 150,000 miles I replaced the engine they are a dime a dozen and easy to replace too. I actually replaced mine with the sohc vtec out of a 1995 civic ex. it makes the car more powerful and a lot of fun to drive. when they start to burn oil it is actually a lot cheaper to replace it than to rebuild it. I have replaced the car with a 2001 civic and hope it is as reliable as the 1991.