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Honda Civic B16A Motor Swap - Heart Surgery

Project Old School EF, Part One: B16a Install

Charles Trieu
Sep 1, 2008
Photographer: The Project Car Archives
130_0809_00_z+b16_honda_swap+re_attach_the_header_to_the_exhaust Photo 1/36   |   Honda Civic B16A Motor Swap - Heart Surgery

Break It Down
Cost B16A and hydraulic transmission swap-$2,400; HASport mount kit-$399; HASport clutch, MC adapter and MC-$199; HASport wiring $199; HASport shift linkage-$149; HASport axles-$349.

Pros 160 hp, 8200 rpm redline, dual cams, VTEC, LSD, incredible aftermarket support, much cheaper than a K series, mad JDM and hella tiiite. Cons It cost money. It's not a K series. It's still a torque-less Honda.

Install Difficulty High; an extra set of hands will help dramatically.

Time It could be done in a day, if you've done swaps before and have all the things prepared. If not, plan for two full days of downtime, if nothing goes wrong. Ha.

Verdict 8200 rpm, VTEC and Honda reliability are incredibly fun.

This month, our EF project goes under the knife for heart surgery. The old 300k-mile D16A did its time and it was time to retire it. Well, we actually donated the ticking time bomb to Project Car's junky CRX build. Have fun while it lasts, Gary!

In need of a new engine, we decided the B16A was the best-fit candidate. Sure, the K series engine is superior to the older B series, but keep in mind that a K series could cost three times more, not to mention the swap parts are more expensive. B series engines have more than enough potential for this streetcar. With 160 hp on tap (115 hp in the D16A), an 8200 rpm redline, a ridiculous amount of aftermarket go-fast products and Honda's reliability, the B16A is an obvious choice. Aside from performance reasons, the original EF in Japan came with a B16A, making our EF somewhat classier, or more JDM, even.

When going with a B series conversion in the EF, the two transmission options are the older cable operated one and the newer hydraulic verision. We opted for the hydraulic as they tend to have nicer gearing, more options for aftermarket gear sets and LSDs, and they may not have as much wear and tear on them as the older units.

Using the newer B16A and a hydraulic transmission, we needed assistance in the form of HASport motor mounts, linkage, wiring and axles. But HASport didn't just send parts; the owner himself, Brian G, came out to lend a hand and make sure we didn't eff up the install. Talk about customer service!

Since our B16A is a used engine with an unknown history, we refreshed some of the more wearable parts. Included are a new timing belt, Samco radiator hoses, heater hoses, ACT clutch and flywheel, Mugen thermostat, Mugen radiator cap, Mugen fan switch, Blox cam seal, Gear Speed third gear synchro set, Odyssey lightweight PC680 battery and a 92-93 GSR radiator from 1-800-Radiator.


Blox Racing
Fremont, CA 94538
HASport Performance
Phoenix, AZ 85040
SP Engineering
City Of Industry, CA 91745
Benicia, CA 94510
Odyssey Batteries
Reading, PA 19605
Lancaster, CA 93535
By Charles Trieu
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