20th Nov 2007, 15:58

I own a 1999 Civic Jordan (limited run of 500, based on the 1.6 160 bhp VTi) and would like to clarify a few things as I am getting very tired of people arguing about who has the better/faster car. All cars have their pro/cons and you should enjoy them for that. People buy what they like and that's what makes us all unique! I say stop fighting and just enjoy them for what they are...

I have a written a review on my Civic Jordan on this site and you'll find it in the 1999 Honda Civic section (all you VTEC addicts will enjoy it!) The Honda VTEC engines are probably one of the best type of engines ever made. Think about it for a moment; many of them can extract over 100bhp per litre of engine capacity without the use of forced induction (turbo/supercharger), whilst remaining extremely reliable for many years of trouble free high rpm use. If you truly appreciate motoring technology you will know that is a tremendous feat of engineering and should be applauded.

People may argue that these are high power, but low torque engines. OK that is true I agree. But in a lightweight hatch with very short gearing low torque isn't a massive problem; the gearing lets you fly through the revs and get into the high rpm powerband very quickly. Think of it as a motorbike engine! People may also argue that this can become tiring as it requires too much effort to get the most out of the engine. But that is exactly why they are so involving and so much fun to drive, as you really have to focus and become part of the vehicle.

Then there's the 'my cars better than yours' brigade who compare apples to pears. OK the Astra VXR, Subaru Impreza WRX/STi, etc are faster in a straight line, but then what did you expect? You are comparing much newer better developed 2000cc turbocharged cars to a 1600cc naturally aspirated hatch. They SHOULD be faster, I should bloody hope so, but the VTi will still give them a good race. If you want to compare something in a similar league look at the EP3 Civic Type R (197bhp from a 2000cc naturally-aspirated engine) and the DC5 Integra Type R (220bhp from again a 2000cc NA engine). These cars are both extremely quick, much more reliable and more involving to drive than other modern hot hatches.

You want to compare turbocharged hot hatches to naturally aspirated smaller engine cars? Race a Honda Civic VTi with a low boost turbo and you may be in for a very unpleasant shock. Turbo VTi's are making 230-280hp on otherwise stock engines reliably all over the world, not just in 1 isolated country. How can this be done you may ask? It is because Honda DOHC VTEC engines have been overengineered from the start. Honda should have made Turbo VTEC from the factory.

Everyone should experience the power of a Honda Turbo at least once in their lifetime: how does the torque of a turbo and the high 8000+ rpm of a VTEC engine sound?

21st Nov 2007, 04:29

Yes of course the subaru 2.0 turbo etc should be faster, but it was the VTI owner that started the ball rolling saying their 1.6 vtec could keep up.

21st Nov 2007, 04:57

The only thing that makes a vtec engine powerful is the special high lift cams, which could be fitted to most cars. I've seen amateur tuned Vauxhall Corsa 1.6 N/A pushing 200 bhp from years ago. And the V part of the name just means its variable, so can switch to higher lobes for power and lower ones for economy. But it'll always be easier to fit high performance cams to a turbo car than to fit a turbo to a N/A car.

3rd Feb 2008, 11:58

To that last comment asking why an Impreza is even being mentioned here.

Its because the Civic owner started it by saying the Civic could match it performance wise.

22nd May 2008, 13:59

I recently purchased a 1998 Honda Civic 1.8 VTEC that had an aftermarket turbo fitted. Fairly nippy now! At the end of the day we are all just frustrated that we can't own the 'proper' performing cars lol. My friend recently bought an Aston Martin DB7 to add to his collection. Now that is scary old stuff!

16th Feb 2009, 16:01

Hi there guys, I was thinking of fitting a turbo on to my Civic 1.6 VTI, but I have heard from people you have a lot of trouble in the long run.

As I will be driving it on daily basis, I just wanted to know would this be OK? As I would like to fit the turbo, but if that's gives my engine trouble making me replace parts every other week, then it's not worth it. Hope you guys can help.

17th Jul 2009, 05:15

I don't recommend you to put turbo in your car. Have you done 3 stage V-tec chip with ECU. That would give some good power, if it's not done already.