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1994 Honda Civic Coupe - Insanity

300 BHP In A Civic EG Coupe-And Not A Supercharger Or Turbo In Sight

Simon Cooke
Sep 1, 2009
Htup 0909 03 o+1994 honda civic EG+mugen lip Photo 1/8   |   HTUP-090900-074-78-COUPE

"Everybody in Ireland modifies hatchbacks and saloons, so I wanted something different," explained Rob Barber, boss of ICETronix, Ireland's leading Honda specialist. After quite a long search he managed to source a totally standard Japanese-spec Honda Civic EG Coupe which had been imported into Ireland a few years earlier. "I only ran around in it for a couple of weeks before we started working on it," remembers Rob. " It was going to be my everyday road car, but I guess we always knew it would end up on the track." Obviously running ICETronix meant that he didn't need to go far to get parts-just to the store room where most of what he wanted, such as the Recaros, were just sitting waiting for him.

Htup 0909 04 o+1994 honda civic EG+DC2 recaro seats Photo 2/8   |   Recaro buckets add a little more holding power and a lot more style to this coupe's cabin.

Rob also had a spare K20 sitting out back, and had already earmarked it as his new power plant, despite the fact he'd never carried out this conversion before. He's since fitted a dozen K20s into various cars that were never intended to run with K20 power. "Hasport gave us a lot of good advice and we had no major problems with the conversion," Rob states. "There were a few issues with some sensors and at the time we had no experience with the Hondata ECU, so we did need a bit of advice for that." Once the new engine was safely installed it was full steam ahead. "It was just a basic UK-spec K20 engine and I drove it like that for about 6 months, remembers Rob. "Then we fitted a Toda stroker kit." He says this modification was because he had a spare engine which needed a bottom end rebuilt, so he might as well swap engines at the same time-it certainly wasn't because his 226 bhp Coupe was feeling slow. "We didn't change the bore for reliability, only the stroke, so it was a 2.1L conversion rather than 2.2," he says. "When we put it in with the new cams and got it mapped, it made 270 bhp." It could now rev to 9000 rpm and Rob recommends that if you don't fit the upgraded springs and retainers to go with the cams, you risk dropping a valve. "We ran it like that at 270 bhp for a couple of months," he says. "Then we spoke to Skunk2 and they told us to fit a different throttle body, change the intake manifold and get a bigger exhaust. They said they'd send us a map for it. When we did what they said it made 300 bhp!" For those who like their facts and figures; that's 300 bhp at 8500 rpm and 211 lbs/ft of torque at 5600 rpm. An impressive set of stats, I'm sure you'll agree. "It was my everyday car for about 2 years and that included track days and two rounds of Time Attack," says Rob. "It was driven hard on the road and then on the track and it was always very reliable; it was never trailered to the track, I always drove there and back and it never let me down."

2018 Honda Civic
$18,940 Base Model (MSRP) 28/40 MPG Fuel Economy

Obviously there is going to be a certain amount of compromise with a car like this trying to suit two different masters, and never really being perfect for either road or track. "With all that power it was dynamite on the track, but not quite so good with the handling," he admitted. "For instance the coilovers were quite soft and didn't offer much control at high speed cornering; there used to be a lot of body roll and under steer. I think the chassis was the weak link. It was taking about as much power as it could take without going to the expense of things like a roll cage." And it was that compromising which eventually led to the competitive Rob accepting that he'd pushed the car as far as it would go and the only way forward in Time Attack was to use a dedicated track car-which is where his purpose-built Honda Fit enters the equation. But that's another story.

Htup 0909 01 o+1994 honda civic coupe+driver side view Photo 3/8   |   1994 Honda Civic Coupe - Insanity

That left the driver's seat in the Coupe available to 18-year old Leon Monaghe, who has been the new owner of the car for the past couple of months. He's moved up from the standard 1.5L Civic which he'd been driving previously. He'd spotted Rob's car parked outside ICETronix and dropped in for a closer look. "I thought it was just a 1.6L Coupe, and it was bit of a shock when Rob told me it was actually 300 bhp," said Leon. And even more of a shock when he actually drove it - but not enough to put him off the deal and he happily handed over about $21,000 to get the keys. "It's mad quick, and spins the wheels up to 4th gear in the wet, but I really only use it for the weekends," admitted Leon. And other than changing a few bits of audio, he's so far kept it exactly as Rob intended. "I'll leave the looks alone, but I might change the cams and a few things in the future, "confessed Leon. "The more power you have, the more you want." To-date, Leon's a track day virgin, but I don't expect that condition to last for much longer; he's already experienced the fore-play and it's only a matter of time before he heads to Mondello Park to really put the Coupe through its paces.

Bolts & Washers

Propulsion
K20 DC5 engine TODA 2.1 Stroker kit (2157 cc)
High compression pistons
Skunk2 pro cams
Skunk2 spec injectors
Skunk2 valve springs and retainers
Dc sports prototype ex manifold
Skunk2 70mm ex system
AEM hybrid intake
Hondata k pro ecu
Hasport mounts, shafts & loom
Skunk2 spec intake manifold
J's racing 74mm throttle body
Power: 300 bhp
Torque: 211ft lb
Honda integra DC5 6-speed gearbox
Spoon LSD
Lightened flywheel
ATS clutch
Hasport driveshafts

Htup 0909 05 o+1994 honda civic coupe+K20jpg Photo 7/8   |   1994 Honda Civic Coupe - Insanity

Stance
Tanabe coilovers
Energy suspension bushing set
Skunk2 camber arms front+ back
Tanabe strut bars + lower bars + underbrace
Seam welded

Resistance
Honda prelude dics & callipers
EBC redstuff pads

Htup 0909 09 o+1994 honda civic coupe+Vis carbon bootlid Photo 8/8   |   1994 Honda Civic Coupe - Insanity

Rims & Rubber
15" Compomotive cx with 205/50/15
Toyo 888 /Tenzo 16 in CC6 road wheels

Inside
2 X black dC2 recaro seats
Back seats retrimed in black
DC5 centre console
DC2 type r snap-off steering wheel

Outside
Carbon fibre mugen lip + bonnet
Type R headlamps
Vis carbon bootlid
Red+clear tails
Mugen rear lip
Repaint in porsche seal grey

Sources

Skunk2 Racing
Norco, CA 92860
951-808-9888
http://www.skunk2.com
Hondata
Torrance, CA 90503
310-782-8278
http://www.hondata.com
HaSport
Phoenix, AZ 85040
602-470-0065
http://www.hasport.com
By Simon Cooke
18 Articles

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