What you are looking at is one of many incarnations of my beloved crx.
I have named her "Bad Karma", and with good reason. I've killed her more than once. She has tried to return the favor, once or twice. This is our story.
When I went looking for a fun weekend battlekart the crx wasn't really high on my list. I was actually looking for an MR2. But after I test drove a crx I found that it fit me much better. My budget of $7000 at the time didn't give me much room though. Crxes were, and still are, rarer and more expensive in Europe than they are Stateside.
After test driving about 10 or 15 different ones, I had to choose between a really nice regular 16V model, or a ratty VT model. I picked up the 16V with the thought that I could always modify it.
Little did I know what I was getting myself in to.
At that time I was working in IT, and getting my hands dirty didn't appeal to me at-all. That's what lowly mechanics are for I figured. But my urge for modifying things quickly became problematic, "tuning shops" were a rare commodity back then, and they were charging much more than I could afford. So…it didn't take long (not even a week) for me to get my hands in...deep.
The very same day I got her, I changed the wheels. The previous owner had a wheel and tire shop, so I got a smoking deal on fresh rims and rubber. Numerous suspension, brake and some mild engine upgrades followed, and I craved more. I was really starting to regret not saving up for a VT model.
So I started to collect parts, and swap everything over. Power windows, leather interior trim, brakes, the works. And after a few years I was fairly content with how things were going.
But, after browsing the internet for a couple of years I learned about engine swaps, and I wanted to be one of the first ones in Holland. So, I poured most of my savings into a rebuilt B16, and I started collecting all the needed parts. And this is where I learned never to anger the car gods. On my way to the shop, she earned her name, and let me know exactly how she felt about me wanting to hack her up. She violently spewed her inner workings all over the engine bay, leaving me stranded roadside in a puddle of oil and coolant.
The tow of shame followed, and the next week was spent preparing her for her new heart. Back then there were no mount kits available here. So we welded that baby in with our own mounts.
Not long after the swap I had a notorious friend from Canada visiting me, and we toured the country for a bit. I decided to add a country to his vacation cross-off list, and took him on a short trip through Germany. Autobahn!! Screaming along at about 150 odd miles an hour, there was a loud *thump* followed by the agonizing sound of grinding steel, clunking metal and the smell of burning rubber.
I had hit "something". And the damage was considerable. Busted headlight, corner, indicator, bumper, no more fender liner and my intake was gone too. It had punched a nice hole in the exhaust when I ran over it. We limped back to Holland, and the 250 miles home.
It took me a few weeks to find replacement parts and fix all the damage, and all was fine again for a couple of months. Until some winter night I was cruising to my old folks a few hundred miles away, enjoying my drink and liquorish candy (look it up) when I noticed a faint ticking sound. "Nooooooo…it can't be!"
Yes it can. And 5 miles down the B16 took a crap on me, leaving me stranded roadside in the middle of the night. The "performance" shop I had gotten the B16 from had used the wrong size crank bearings when they rebuilt it. My oil was literally silver in color when I drained it. I had had enough. I had already started stripping the car apart to sell when I was offered a good deal on a B18C4 that I just couldn't pass up. The B18C4 is a fairly rare UKDM version of the 1.8VTi engine with 180Hp from factory. Completely unprepared for another swap I opened another can of worms. The engine being LHD from the UK, I had to do all sorts of wiring conversions, and I neatly labeled all the wires….with a big question mark. It took a me and a friend of mine 2 weeks in a freezing workshop mapping out the wiring loom to re-wire the OBD2 engine in my OBD0 car with an OBD1 ecu. When we closed the hood, we found out the hard way how much taller the deck is on the B18, and I left a nice big dent in my hood. I had a VT front end available… and did the front end conversion wich solved the clearance problem. After some thorough tuning on laptops, I ended up with the beast you see before you today. It recently cranked out 192HP at the flywheel on a stock block.
This is the story of us. There are a couple of major chapters coming up. I hope you've enjoyed reading my story and watching the pictures as much as I usually have driving her.
Full VT front end conversion with bumper, hood, power adjustable glass H4 headlights.
Fiberglass vented hood
The side indicators are stock in EDM land, and I swapped them with white ones.
Replaced the trunk with the stock 16V flush wing with a VT lid with it's spoiler.
Power mirrors from the VT.
Fully functional CarbonFiber roof and roofliner.
DCsports ceramic 421 header
B&M Fuel pressure regulator
Invidia G300 catback
EPS big-bore cat converter
Apexi V-AFCII controls IAB settings and is used for tweaking.
CROME-pro tuned USDM P30 with knockboard
OBD1 conbersion with Boomslang harness
Zeitronix wideband controller
EDM Y2 transmission
Exedy organic clutch
(I wish I had kept the S80 transmission with LDS)
EDM backseat ofcourse (gloat)
Power windows with leather door panel upholstery.
Sparco REV seats with belts
Victor steering wheel with longer steering boss.
VT gauge cluster with fuel level light and 9500Rpm rev counter.
I can currently choose from:
16" Rota slipstream full royal gunmetal with polished lip/Falken RT215
15" Speedline safari in Bronze/ Kumho KW17
15" OEM Honda 5th gen civic VTi wheels/ Toyo Proxes T1-S
15" Honda 6th gen VTi wheels/Bridgestone potenza
15" Lenso VPD blackchrome/Toyo Proxes T1-R
Front VT 11" Fastbrake discs with Legend 2piston calipers and axxis carbon/metallic pads
Rear 11" Fastbrake disc conversion VTi calipers and axxis carbon/metallic pads
Goodridge Stainless steel brake lines with synthetic Castrol DOT5.1 fluid
VT front suspension (similar to civic EX swap)
Koni Yellow adjustable dampers
Energy suspension bushings all around
OMP strut braces front and rear top
B-Brand braces on the bottom.
Getting her to New York, and driving her to wherever.