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Honda Civic Si vs. VW GTI



  • Agreed, the Si and Ex feel completely different, I don't know what went on during that test drive.
  • The 337 was $22,725 sticker. Plenty of them went for over sticker, and supposedly there are still some out there at dealers asking way too much over, but most probably went for around $23k.

    BTW, the Civic Type R has 200hp, right? The 220hp car is the Honda Integra Type R, no?

  • inigocoinigoco Posts: 51
    Quote: "inigoco: Calling the RSX-S wheels uninspiring is a matter of preference. I happen to like them. You may get 18" wheels on the 337 but the car was $25,000+ and since they only sold 1500 and according to people in here they all sold at MSRP. So that means that the 337 is a few grand more than the RSX-S and it has less power out of a turbo engine. Take that $3,000 and get a turbo for the RSX-S and you won't even notice a Jet.. I mean Golf. " :End Quote

    Well, I don't have a big problem with the wheels offered on the Type-S either, just stating that for being the up-level version of the RSX, it has essentially the same wheels. Again, as stated before, the 337's were about $22,225 MSRP, about $1,000 less than theType-S MSRP of $23,270, hence the comparison. But, for the price, the 337 has more features and at least definetly looks sportier. The Type-S is pretty bland by comparison.

    You compare the output of the engines, yet you don't notice that the specific output is the same for both, 100HP/Liter. Yes, the VW uses a turbo to get that power, but that also allows for a cheap power upgrade. You can get around 240HP out of the 1.8T at about half the cost of getting a turbo onto the Type-S, plus the installation will be much cheaper as well since the turbo is already on the VW. Plus, a good reason fot the increased power int he Type-S engine has to do with the compression ratio. The Type-S has a ration of 11:1, that's pretty high for a street car and not very friendly if you plan to add a turbo. The 1.8T gets by with a less radical 9.5:1 ratio, mainly because of the turbo. If the turbo were removed and the compression ratio increased, the 1.8T would likely still be pretty close to 180 HP. It's just that the 1.8T was built to be a turbo from the get-go and as such has a lower compression ratio to protect the engine.
    Yes, the Type-S is slightly faster than the 337. A few tenths of a seconds difference 0-60, but the RSX has a slight weight advantage as well. The 20HP extra doesn't seem to make a huge difference. 20HP should amount to a bit more of an advantage than that. Why are the times so close, the answer is in the powerband. The Type-S's 2.0 has a relatively peaky powerband. The power it makes is up high in the rev range, mostly due to i-VTEC. The HP peaks at 7400 RPM and the torque peaks at 6000 RPM at 142 lb/ft. The 1.8T HP peaks at 5500 RPM and the torque at 1950-5000 RPM at 173 lb/ft. The redline for the Type-S is 7900 RPM, the 1.8T is at 6500 RPM.
    So, you can see by the numbers that the the Type-S makes it's power pretty high up in the rev range, whereas the 1.8T has power which is there for 3/4 of the rev range. Not to mention that the torque for the 1.8T is much higher than for the 2.0, this is where the difference in 0-60 times comes from. No matter what you hear about HP, Torque is what does the work, other wise why would truck engines have high torque engines? The torque is what moves the mass and creates the acceleration. Because of the higher torque rating and flat power band of the 1.8T, it is able to keep within a few tenths of a second in acceleration even though the 337 is giving up about 100lbs. to the RSX.

    Do a comparison of the 2 on acura's website,, you will see the similarities for yourself. Make sure you choose 2002 for the model year of the 337 because it's not available as a 2003. I feel like I'm making the same points over and over just against different cars. Just seems that in their price class, the GTI's offer many more options than the others and generally have more power as well. Yet again, it all comes down to what you want in a car and which vehicles suits your style better.
  • The wheels on the 337 are definitely awesome.

    And I'm just going to take this space to mention that I am _NEVER_ eating whatever stupid brand of protein bars I've been buying again. They upset my stomach every single time. (they were fine for the first month or two) I am about to go in the bathroom and disembowel myself. Where is the damn Pepto?
  • inigocoinigoco Posts: 51
    Quote: BTW, the Civic Type R has 200hp, right? The 220hp car is the Honda Integra Type R, no? : End Quote

    From the information I have, the Honda Civic Type-R as it is called in Europe and Japan is powered by a 197 HP version of the 2.0 with an 8000 RPM redline, 6-speed, 17" wheels, and a body package which helps the looks quite a bit. If it is brought to the US, which it probably will, it will likely arrive in this form around 2004 and be called the SiR. I believe this is the most likely case. I doubt Honda would allow itself to sell a Civic with more HP(220) than their own premium sport compact, the RSX Type-S(200). I'm sure there is an RSX Type-R in the pipeline as well that will likely have about 220 HP, but this still puts the SiR at a level below that so as to keep the RSX as the Premium car.
  • inigocoinigoco Posts: 51
    Hey Muffin_Man are you in the US or elsewhere? I ask this since I am writing this message at about 1:30am in my time zone and you posted around the same time. What are we doing up this late? I understand your problem may be a bit different than mine, you have a problem with protein bars, I just have a problem with my inner clock. Anyway, this should be my last message for tonight as it's time I see about going to bed.
  • inigocoinigoco Posts: 51
    I lied, this isn't my last post for the night. I had hoped to find this info on the acura website, but I didn't so I had to look elsewhere. Have you all seen the Performance Package that will be offered for the RSX for 2003? I found some pictures and info on a website called Just click on "Present" and then scroll down into the "A's" and you will see the link for the "2003 Acura Type-S Performance Package" This package is mainly a visual package, though it does include slotted brake roters and performance pads and a lowered, stiffer suspension as well as 17" wheels. The rest is pretty much a body kit which looks pretty good on the RSX. I mainly brought this up as it is about the closest relative to the 337 GTI. The GTI mostly gets by with a body kit, as well as upgraded wheels, and suspension, and brakes over the base model as the Perf. Package does for the RSX. This will of course add to the price of the RSX Type-S, which makes it even more expensive than the 337.

    One final thing I've noticed, it seems from the pictures on that website, the RSX with the body kit bears a very striking resemblance to the Civic Coupe, especially in the second pic which doesn't show the distinctive acura front end. This is of course intentional as the RSX is a Honda in the rest of the world, but it gives me a good idea as to what the Civic Si should have been. The same upgrades on this RSX put onto a Civic Coupe with the same 200 HP, 6-speed powertrain would have been a very competitive opponent to the other sport compacts in this class. But then again, our main discussion revolves around the Si and GTI which are both hatchbacks, so this point is mostly moot. Just an observation.
  • seguyseguy Posts: 133

    As I said they 'feel' completely different. I agree on that point definitely. If you look at my prior post I stated that the SI was the better handler, AND felt more substantial. But the difference in acceleration is nearly negligable. What's the times 0-60 and 1/4 mile? Probably not much difference. The EX I drove had 14000 miles on it, so the SI needed a little more loosening up at only 1100 miles. But the seat of the pants feel was equal to me. I'm not trying to bash the SI, I think it's a great car for what it is, especially at $16.5K. The i-vtec is great. Smooth as butter, I should know our CRV uses the 2.4L version.

    anonymousposts- I don't really appreciate the comments you made against my driving ability. Think about this. MAYBE you should learn how to drive the EX. The SI is faster than the EX, but barely. Nothing like what a GTI is to an SI. Not even close, especially at 6000+ elevation. Unless of course you decide to put NOS in your car. Then to that I say, GREAT! No hard feelings, but I don't believe personal attacks should belong in these discussions. This board was dead for a while, now it's live n' kickin.

    inigoco- Go to team honda, that's where I went and they have like 10 or so on the lot.

    Just found this, fair comparison since the 2002 SI and 2001 EX(doesn't specify coupe or sedan, but I'm guessing sedan) both tested by Car and Driver. Of course driver, course conditions play in. But at least it's the same mag and testing methods, they take the best times out of multiple runs.
    0-60/1320ft times:
  • hamproofhamproof Posts: 241
    She's in a world of her own. No matter what you say about Honda/Acura, both of these cars will be the best in the world (for her). So, save your breath and enjoy your cars. Honda and Acuras are nice cars no doubt but EVERY car in this world has limitations.

    If you search all her previous posts and read about them, you'll see what I mean. There's no point arguing with her bet. SI <-> GTi or RSX/RSX-S <-> 337 for that matter. And when she took a cheap shot at the Jetta/Golf/GTi implying you can't tell a difference bet. them, that's the whole point of Euro cars! The higher performance version has small clues (a little aggressive body styling, wheels, small badges etc.) to stand out but not overly so in the crowd. This coming from her driving a SI which incidently looks like a Honda Minivan! Or a Focus. Not to mention the RSX looking so plain jane.

    But guess what? When I sell my 01 Audi A4 Quattro, I'll be buying a Civic SI. I like the small little car that looks like a minivan but at least I admit what it looks like.
  • "From the information I have, the Honda Civic Type-R as it is called in Europe and Japan is powered by a 197 HP version of the 2.0 with an 8000 RPM redline, 6-speed, 17" wheels, and a body package which helps the looks quite a bit. If it is brought to the US, which it probably will, it will likely arrive in this form around 2004 and be called the SiR. I believe this is the most likely case. I doubt Honda would allow itself to sell a Civic with more HP(220) than their own premium sport compact, the RSX Type-S(200). I'm sure there is an RSX Type-R in the pipeline as well that will likely have about 220 HP, but this still puts the SiR at a level below that so as to keep the RSX as the Premium car. "

    I just checked out the Japanese Honda website. The Civic Type-R has a 215ps (pferdestarke, DIN-hp) 2.0l and 17"ers with 205/45 tires. The Integra Type-R has 220ps and 17"s with 215/45 Z-rated tires. Those cars are equipped so closely I'm amazed Honda bothers to market both.

  • rickroverrickrover Posts: 602
    I had the opportunity to go up against an RSX-S in my modified 1.8t GTI. ingoco comments about torque are accurate. I raced an RSX-S with a few mods at the track last Wednesday night. My modified 1.8t (235 lb ft of torque) blew the RSX's doors right off, it wasn't much of a race at all. I'll find the slip that recorded our times on it and post them - the difference was amazing. The RSX-S wasn't stock either - it had an aftermarket intake and exhaust and maybe some other mods - I tried to talk to the guy but he didn't have time for me :-)
  • pda97pda97 Posts: 91
    So Anonymousposts is a "she" ?? HAHA. You're killing me :) Seriously, I thought I was the only one labelling her biased. She seems to live and breath Honda....... a true Honda groupie ! The danger with that is no one will take her opinions seriously.

    But back to the subject...I read in MT that Acura gave Honda the permission to sell a 200hp Civic. This should be a better performing car. It's still a buzz bomb though, i.e. no torque. But should be fun on the flats. Keep it under $20K and it might do well. The reason is that the Neon SR-T will be out soon with a 0-60 time of less than 6 secs and a price tag under $20K. Now, you can brag about Honda reliability and resale value all you want. But I suspect the younger crowds don't care since they're not brand loyal.
  • inigocoinigoco Posts: 51
    The info I got for the Civic SiR/Type-R and RSX Type-R are from automotive magazines. I got it out of the same comparison test I mentioned in this thread a few weeks back. In the March edition of Car and Driver. The had a section which showed the higher level versions of the cars they were testing, the Ford Focus RS (217 HP turbo), the 25th Anniversary GTI(337 edition before it was officially announced), and the Civic SiR (197 HP). I have reason to believe that these stats are likely pretty correct since the RSX Type-R is expected to have about 220 HP. Not to mention that a 197-200 HP version of the Si would be a huge jump in power about 40 horses so I'd expect the SiR to fall into this power range. It's not likely for the Civic SiR to gain much more power than 40 Horses, that's already a huge jump especially when considering that the Si has about the same gain in power over the Civic EX. It's pretty common knowledge that Japan never gives us their performance cars as they have them in the homeland. Look at the WRX and EVO's for proof, they are both watered-down versions of the originals. It's not unlikely that the RSX Type-R and Civic SiR will follow this trend and be turned down a bit compared to what the Japanese public gets. This is why I think the specs I stated for these cars are pretty accurate.
  • inigocoinigoco Posts: 51
    Here's a link I found to some guy's website with some info on the upcoming RSX Type-R, even has a picture that seems pretty accurate. From what I can tell, the specs seem pretty correct to what we can expect from the US version of this car. The specs seem to be from the Japanese version which is alrady available or will be soon.

    The only things I dispute are the 0-60 times and the quarter mile time. 20 HP will not make the car nearly 1 second faster 0-60 and the quarter mile time will likely be high 14's or low 15's with a speed about where he estimated since other cars in this class are have similar quarter-mile times and speeds.
    The power rating are what I was more interested in anyway. 220 HP with 152 lb/ft of torque and an 8400 RPM redline seems about right. The gains match up well with the gains from the base RSX to the Type-S power-wise. Anyway, the site is at

    if you want to take a look.
  • seguy: I don't see how that was a personal attack. I said that anybody who couldn't make a car with 160HP faster than a car with 127HP didn't know how to drive. I didn't single you out. A coupe of Civic EX's have messed with me and never won .. but I guess they just didn't know how to drive. And why are you singling me out when other people said that something was up with that test drive if a EX felt just as fast as a SI?

    And I went to and they showed the SI at 8.0 to 60 and the 01 EX at 8.4 to 60. However, 2 other magazines have gotten the SI to 60 in 7.6 seconds. So since we want to take the best times for every car this is what it looks like (in order of fastest to slowest):

    RSX: 6.1/14.8
    GTI: 6.5/15.3
    99 Civic SI: 7.1/15.7
    02 SI: 7.6/15.8
    01 EX: 8.4/16.7

    So as you can see the RSX is faster and the EX is almost a second slower than the 02 SI. 0.8 seconds should make a significant difference in seat of the pants feel. But maybe it was the SI's smoother engine and lower redline that made it feel slower.

    That also proves another point that torque doesn't necessarily make a car faster to 60. The 99-00 Civic SI had 160HP and 111 lb. ft. torque but it is faster to 60 than my 02 SI with 160HP and 132lb ft. torque. The 02 SI is producing more torque at around 2000 RPM than the 99-00 produced at it's peak. It would all come down to the driver in the RSX-S vs. the GTI and the 99-00 SI vs. 02. If he takes off from an idle it would probably take a minute for him to catch you and pass you, but eventually he would.

    hamproof: To me Honda/Acura/Toyota/Lexus are the best. But I keep it to the Honda/Acura/Toyota/Lexus boards for the most part. And I never said my SI was the best looking car on the planet .. if you have read so many of my posts then you have probably seen me say that I call it my little dust-buster. But I like it whether other people do or not.

    pda: What does me being a "she" have to do with anything.

    And if you look at the Neon SRT board there is almost NO interest in that car whatsoever because it is still a Neon. A fast Neon but a Neon. They will sell the ones they make without a problem though because of the power. But there's more to a car than that to me or I would drive a Camaro SS.

    Supposedly there is a ECU reprogram out there for the RSX already that takes it up to around 220HP. Can't confirm this yet though.
  • rickroverrickrover Posts: 602
    Finally got out to test an SI last night. This particular dealer had 4 02's left and was knocking almost $2,800 off MSRP right off the bat.

    I don't mind the SI's styling at all, it's a contemporary rendition of the hatchback theme. I think it looks better in darker colors. I like the rear end styling a lot. The interior has many nice touches, the seats were great, very supportive and I like the red accent stitching. Lots of room in the back, almost enormous with the rear seat folded. I'm not sure I like the shifter location - no big deal though as it has a nice direct feel to it.

    It handled very well in stock form, very tossable - do a few simple suspension tweaks to it with larger wheels/tires and it would be beyond perfect.

    As far as performance goes I was suprised how spunky the SI is. I easily got the front tires to chirp in 2nd gear. My modified GTI's performance has totally spoiled me so it's hard for me to be subjective - the GTI (even stock 180 hp)wins hands down, the stock SI's performance is totally acceptable.

    Overall the SI is a nice, well designed package, fun to drive, very nice material content, fit/finish and a fantastic value for the $$$.

    This is high praise from a VW fanatic.
  • inigocoinigoco Posts: 51
    Quote: "And I went to and they showed the SI at 8.0 to 60 and the 01 EX at 8.4 to 60. However, 2 other magazines have gotten the SI to 60 in 7.6 seconds. So since we want to take the best times for every car this is what it looks like (in order of fastest to slowest):

    RSX: 6.1/14.8
    GTI: 6.5/15.3
    99 Civic SI: 7.1/15.7
    02 SI: 7.6/15.8
    01 EX: 8.4/16.7

    That also proves another point that torque doesn't necessarily make a car faster to 60. The 99-00 Civic SI had 160HP and 111 lb. ft. torque but it is faster to 60 than my 02 SI with 160HP and 132lb ft. torque. The 02 SI is producing more torque at around 2000 RPM than the 99-00 produced at it's peak. It would all come down to the driver in the RSX-S vs. the GTI and the 99-00 SI vs. 02. If he takes off from an idle it would probably take a minute for him to catch you and pass you, but eventually he would." :End Quote

    I prefer to take an average of the times in order to figure the performance of these cars. There are too many variables that can make a difference in the times, not to mention the way different magazines and drivers would launch the vehicles and the fact that some of the test vehicles may be "ringers" which happen to be slightly better than stock or they may be slower ones as well. This also helps us to see how the powertrains of these vehicles make a big difference in how the times come out. Loks at the variance in the times for the RSX and the Si. has a 0-60 time for the RSX Type-S of 6.1s, this is the absolute lowest I've seen for a Type-S, most others I've seen are around 6.5-6.7s. Next, take a look at the 99-00 Si. The times for both, though identical mechanically, are nearly 1 second apart, 7.1s for the '99, 7.9s for the '00. Now, the '02 Si has 0-60 times ranging from 7.6-8s. These are large differences for cars which should be pretty much identical with the exception of the driver. What this shows me is the peakiness of these powerplants. All 3 of these engines utilize some form of VTEC which allows for them to make more power, but it also make it such that the engine makes this power at a high RPM. This comes at the expense of low-end power, the torquiest engine of the 3, the Type-S makes a decent 142 lb/ft at a high 6000 RPM, that doesn't make things any easier for the test driver.

    Now, we move onto the GTI 1.8T. has only one time for 0-60, 6.5s, but the car is close enough to the Beetle Turbo S that we can use the 0-60 time from it as well, which is 6.7s. Yes, the Turbo S uses a 6-speed whereas the GTI uses a 5, but for 0-60 it won't make a huge difference and may also explain the two-tenths difference in times as well. Anyway, all the tested times I've seen for the GTI 1.8T have been pretty close, all around 6.5-6.7s. This shows the broad powerband of the 1.8T. This car makes it easy to dive fast, all you do is hit the gas and go, you don't have to worry so much about what revs to start at and all that, you just do it and the car does the hard work for you. This is due to the fact that the 1.8T makes its torque at a very low 1950 RPM all the way up to 5500 RPM. This is why the times for the 1.8T are so much closer than the times for the VTEC powerplants. Any number of test drivers can jump into the GTI and get a fast time, it takes a skilled hand to wring the best out of the VTEC cars. So, now here are the amended 0-60 times for each car, averaged from times that have been kicked around magazines, and on here.

    RSX Type-S: 6.4s (6.1-6.7s)
    99-00 Si: 7.5s (7.1-7.9s)
    '02 Si: 7.8s (7.6-8.0s)
    GTI 1.8T: 6.6s (6.5-6.7s)

    These averaged times helped me form another conclusion as well. These times are what an average driver can expect to get out of these cars, but it also brings the times of the '02 Si and the '99-'00 Si closer as well. This 3-tenths difference is minor and can be explained by the weight difference between the two models. The '02, though with about 20lb/ft more torque also weighs about 156 lbs more than the old model. This, combined with the likliness of a different test driver for each model tested easily explains the time difference between the old and new models. This also shows the advantage of the high torque of the 1.8T. The time for the 1.8T is two-tenths slower compared to the Type-S, this is not a big difference considering the Type-S has 20 more HP, especially since the GTI weighs more than 150 lbs. more than the Type-S (2767lbs. vs. 2932 lbs.). The only explanation for this is the wide powerband and increased torque of the GTI. So, yes, it does all come down to the driver more than anything, but a car with a wide powerband will make it easier to get fast times.
  • inigocoinigoco Posts: 51
    I was noticing something while reading over the stats for these cars. The RSX Type-S gains 40 HP over the stock RSX, yet only gains 1 lb/ft of torque. Plus the revs at which these gains are achieved is higher as well. Compare this to the power gains over the 150 HP 1.8T of the '99-'01 1.8T to the 180 HP '02-current 1.8T

    Base RSX: 160 HP @ 6500 RPM 141 lb/ft @ 4000 RPM
    RSX Type-S: 200 HP @ 7400 RPM 142 lb/ft @ 6000 RPM

    '99-'01 1.8T: 150 HP @ 5800 RPM 162 lb/ft @ 2200 RPM
    '02-current 1.8T: 180 HP @ 5500 RPM 173 lb/ft @ 1950 RPM

    Not only did the GTI gain more torque than the RSX did, it also "LOWERED" the revs at which these new gains were achieved.
  • Yes it is easier to get a torque engine to go fast more consistently than a peaky engine. However, a good driver can get consistently good times out of the 99-00 SI engines. But the RSX engine really can't be characterized as that peaky any more. And even if it does feel peaky to you there is now a fix.

    90% of it's torque from 2000 to 7000 RPM.

  • inigocoinigoco Posts: 51
    One other thing I thought about just now regards the older, 150 GTI 1.8T. How would that compare to the new Si. Well, it turns out on the site the times for a 2000 GTI GLS 1.8T are 7.3s 0-60. Now, compare this to the fastest time for the 160 HP Civic Si at 7.6s. Not only is the 1.8T still faster, it also weighs nearly 200 lbs. more than the Si (2932 lbs. vs. 2744 lbs.) . What other explanation for this difference is there other than the increased powerband and torque of the 1.8T? After all, the 150 HP 1.8T is making 10 less HP than the Si, this combined with the extra weight should make the Si faster right? Now you begin to see where the torque makes a difference. If you want another way to see this is to get both cars and do some testing for yourself. Test both cars 0-60 with only the driver in them. Now, test both cars 0-60 with 1 passenger in the car as well. You can keep going until you have 4 people in each car if you'd like, but I'm sure the facts will become clear quite quickly. The car with the wider powerband and more torque will likely not lose as much time with additional passengers as the car with the lesser torque. The fact that the heavier 1.8T with less HP still beats a new Si to 60 shows this just as well. You want to really see a difference, make the cars as equal as you can by adding a passenger to the Si so that both are much closer in weight and the 1.8T will of course win by an even greater margin. Torque does make a big difference in how quickly a car will achieve speed.

    The only other explanation for this difference is traced to the transmissions of each car. A lower(numerically-higher) gearing creates faster acceleration and a higher(numerically-lower) gearing creates a higher end speed. Well, Honda does not have the gear ratios for the Si on it's site, but the RSX 5-speed does and for these purposes we'll assume that they use the same transmission and ratios as the Si since they also share the engine. 1st and 2nd gears are the only two used to get to 60mph, so we'll ignore the others. Now, to figure the overall ratio of each, I'll multiply each gear ratio by the final drive ratio in order to get the actual ratio reaching each wheel and putting power to the ground. Remember, a higher number would equal a faster acceleration in a car that was otherwise the same. For example, a car with a 3.88:1 ratio will be slower in acceleration to an equal car with a 4.10:1 ratio. Now, the calculations:

    RSX/Si 5-speed: Final Drive - 4.389:1
    1st gear - 3.267:1
    2nd gear - 1.88:1
    1st overall - 4.389 X 3.267 = 14.34:1
    2nd overall - 4.389 X 1.88 = 8.25:1

    GTI 5-speed: Final Drive - 3.65:1
    1st gear - 3.30:1
    2nd gear - 1.94:1
    1st overall - 3.65 X 3.30 = 12.05:1
    2nd overall - 3.65 X 1.94 = 7.08:1

    Now, as you can see the Honda 5-speed should be faster than the VW 5-speed due to the ratios I've calculated. The overall ratios for both 1st and 2nd gears are lower(numerically higher) for the Honda 5-speed than those of the GTI, which should relate to a quicker acceleration for the Si especially with the weight difference. Now, the only explanation we have left is the increased torque of the 1.8T. Since we are comparing the 150 HP 1.8T we don't have the HP advantage to use, but the torque advantage is still present. Again, more proof that torque is what accelerates your car.
  • inigocoinigoco Posts: 51
    Quote: "Yes it is easier to get a torque engine to go fast more consistently than a peaky engine. However, a good driver can get consistently good times out of the 99-00 SI engines. But the RSX engine really can't be characterized as that peaky any more." End Quote

    Compared to the '99-'00 Si engine, I'd say you are right that the newer iVTEC 2.0 in the RSX's and Si is not as peaky an engine, but we are comparing this to the 1.8T as well and in comparison it is still rather peaky. Also, you mention, as I did, that a good driver will be able to get good times out of a peaky engine like the '99-'00 Si engine. This is true, but how many of us are truly great drivers? I have enough no-how to admit that I'm not as good a driver as I could be, better than average perhaps, but there are those better than me. This is likely the case with the large majority of other on this site as well. We "are" average drivers, not great drivers. Because of this, I doubt many of us would find it easy to get the best times out of a peaky engine. This is again where the increased powerband of the 1.8T shines through. Even average drivers such as myself have a very easy time getting good times out of the GTI. I'd much rather have the confidence to know that my car will still be fast even if I make a slight mistake, whereas the driver of car like the '99-'00 Si will have to do everything exactly right just to keep up much less beat the GTI. I prefer the less-stressful quickness of my GTI.

    P.S. I had to go to the hondata website to see the dyno sheet you were talking about. Yes, the gains are there, about 20 HP, but only a slight gain in torque, less than 10 lb/ft from what I can tell. Compare those gains to an ECU upgrade for the 1.8T. The 1.8T also gains about 20 HP, but gains about 80-90 lb/ft of torque. APR makes one of the many available and a sample dyno sheet can be seen at More info on it is at
  • I looked at the test for a GTI 1.8 from 2000 and the 0-60 time is identical with the Civic at 7.6 seconds and by the 1/4 mile the SI is pulling ahead. If you look at Edmunds they have the 2001 GTI 0-60 in 8.5 seconds .. so much for the consistency of the turbo engine. maybe they were experiencing major turbo lag that day or maybe the GTI they tested was broke .. which wouldn't surprise me since it's a VW.

    With times within a few tenths of a second it's all going to depend on the driver. So let's just call it even. But now that you've admitted you are only an average driver I'll take my chances against you.
  • inigocoinigoco Posts: 51
    I don't take the tests on edmunds with any grain of salt, their times for all cars are way off of what everyone else gets. I prefer to use the numbers from the major magazines like Road and Track, Motortrend, Automobile, and Car and Driver which are used to testing higer-performance vehicles, unlike edmunds which mainly caters to more family-oriented vehicles. Not to mention the fact that VW themselves have the 0-60 times for the GTI 1.8T to be about 7.7s and they underestimate quite a bit so that 8.5s isn't even on the radar. That's also why I chose to use averaged times for all the cars as well to get rid of overly high and low numbers to help find a true reading. Plus, both the times you state use the older 150 HP engine so claiming that the times are the same for the Si doesn't help your case much. So, yeah, I guess we can call it even on the 150 HP 1.8T GTI against a new 160 HP Si, but remember we're talking about the 180 HP GTI mainly and that still has a large lead over the Si.
  • You were the one who brought up the 150HP GTI. Edmunds has the 02 SI at 7.9 seconds and I bet you wouldn't argue against that number. You can't use what you want to support your position and then throw out the rest of the data.

    And yes if you go by car-stats numbers the 02 SI and the 1.8T with 150HP have identical 0-60 times. But the SI only weights about 80lbs less than the GTI but it has 20 lb ft less torque which you say is the most important factor in acceleration. It's max torque is at 1750 while the SI's is at 5000. And as speed climbs the SI is pulling ahead because it's ahead by .2 at the 1/4 mile.

    Like I said, all of this is pointless and could go on for days. It's gonna be up to the driver. Since the VW is "easier" to make go fast according to you all of the bad/average drivers should buy a VW and leave the Honda/Acuras for people that CAN drive.
  • 204meca204meca Posts: 370
    Congrats inigoco for pointing out the other critical factor in acceration wars. I was wondering when someone would get to that. In the end, it is the high torque low & midrange which enables the heavier GTI to get such good numbers. The higher torque at low rpms was very apparent on the GTI (as it is on my daughers 96 Jetta). Ya gotta hang on the steering wheel when you goose it at low speeds!

    I drove an the 02 GTI & Si this week. Both very nice. Overall, I liked the feel of the Si better, very tossable and smooth, shifter is very slick & convenient (but then I have owned 6 Hondas still have a 92 Civic Si & Del Sol Si). Yet the GTI has SO MUCH MORE comfort & safety content (adjustable seats, telescoping steering, traction control, more airbags, AM/FM Cassette C/D combo, easy entry rear seats, all controls & switches illuminated, armrest, (I might buy it on that alone), one touch up & down front windows, better warranty... Looks for me are a toss up, I am not crazy about either, but the Si stands out more in a crowd.

    Sooner or later I am going to get one of these & it is a difficult choice. My heart says Honda, my head says GTI!
  • 204meca: I would trade low-end torque for power high in the range anyday. With the way I drive I rarely need power down low but need it at higher speeds to make highway passing easier and that's where it's more useful. To me the 02 SI, along with the RSX engines, are the best combination of both.

    We also have a 00 SI and while it is more fun to drive if you want to race it can be a pain if you have a couple of people in the car and the AC on. But that 1.6 is a dream. The higher the revs go the more fun it is and the better it sounds. But for daily commuting I like the 02 SI. It has more torque but is still immensely smooth and powerful throughout the powerband. And the gearbox can't be beat. Nor can the seats in it's price range.

    And the SI can be had new for around $16,000-$16,500 where I live vs. around $20,500 for a GTI 1.8T with the luxury package (gotta have a roof). So for the price and added reliability I can do without the one touch up and down windows (auto down is enough for me) and the other features you mentioned.

    On safety, this is actually my second 02 SI. The first one was totalled. A woman coming the opposite direction made a left hand turn and I hit her head-on going 45MPH. I walked away without so much as a bruise or a scratch. It knocked the wheel off of her car, buckled the roof, and crushed the fender. If you look at crash test data the Si withou SAB does just as well as the Jetta with SAB. So if you are going by safety it's equal regardless of the number of airbags.
  • hamproofhamproof Posts: 241
    I never did say you ever said your car was the best looking car in the world. I merely stated that you think Honda/Acura are the best car in the world. Anyways...

    How can you even lump Honda/Acura in the mix of Toyota/Lexus. Sure you can compare Honda and Toyota. But there's absolutely no way you can compare Acura and Lexus. I'm a big fan of Acura. I believe they are a good value for money. But in no way the luxury part of Acura is comparable to Lexus. A lot of people who buy Lexuses do not cross shop over to Acura. They want the service, prestige and whisper quiet cabin of the Lexus. Acura is value for money and for the competing models, they are cheaper. Acura is for someone who wants a nice car but balk at the prices of BMW and Lexus. Period! When you see the same moonroof switch as well as mirror adjustments in a Civic all the way to the TL and MDX series, you can't call it luxury.

    Anyway, I'm surprised you would trade low end torque for higher power RPM. You also claim you drive highway during your commute and you need passing power on the highway. Let me ask you this question. What is your average speed?? If I remember correctly, you said you average maybe 60-65mph daily on the highway, right? At least in one of your post when someone asked you about your mpg. I guess you must live in the boonies where no one drives their car or you go to work or school at insane hours. My current car has a trip computer. I drive 60miles round trip to work daily and I leave for work/home at 6:50am/4:00pm. Even at those times when I drive on the highway (house is 1.5miles away from highway enter ramp and work is 3 miles from the highway exit ramp), my trip computer shows my average speed for the week at 33-35mph! W/o a trip computer I might think I'm driving 80mph average coz' on the highway I'm at 75-80mph and when I pass cars, I'm at 85-90mph. So unless you live in an area where there's harly any cars or you leave at 5am and come home at 1pm or 10pm, there is no way your average speed is 65mph!
    Here's why I think you are wrong when you want to trade low end torque for high end HP. When I'm cruising in my A4 (1.8T), at 80mph, it is at 4k rpm. When I pass in 5th. at 85-90mph, it's at 4.5k - 5k. I believe on the SI, it is about the same. 75-80mph is around 4k rpm. Redline is 6.5k. So for you get get to 90mph to pass, it should be still less than redline. So unless you want to spend a night in jail, I suggest if you have to drive more than 90 mph to pass, don't! I would hate to see a little Civic like that hit something at 90-100mph! We'll definitely miss you here :) I can understand that once in a while you want to downshift to 4th. or 3rd., revved it up a little to feel the sense of speed and pass. There's nothing wrong with that, but the Civic as it is now, will suffice. There's not too many people who want to rev it to say 8k rpm or the insane S2000 9k redline on a DAILY COMMUTE!
    Let's just call the Civic what it is. Cheap affordable daily commuter. People who buy VW GTi are usually the ones who have driven cheapo Japanese cars and want something *luxury*. They want nice bolstered seats (02 SI has this somewhat - models prior are just too thin), nice interiors (VW/Audi makes the best interior - there's no point arguing this if you want to. You could but you'll be the minority coz' industries expert says so) and better graded material on the inside. Why do you think the material on the inside of the RSX is much better than the Integra it replaced. With the gen X going for higher priced cars, the gen Y wants something different from what their parents are used to. They have money to spend and most fresh college graduates with their first jobs are not thinking Civics and Corollas. Most want 3 series and IS (Lexus) or GTis and RSXs. Hardly anyone would consider Civics and Corollas anymore.
    But guess what? I bought a 95 Altima GLX when I graduated (in 95). Sold it and got a 97 Civic EX in 97. In 2000, I was done w/ cheapo Japanese car and decided to go Euro. With AWD being the criteria (I live in the snow belt), Audi A4 was the obvious choice. But now, I'm selling the A4 and looking to buy the SI. The only reason is because it is a cheap car (sure a Hyundai or Kia is cheaper but I want a car that will last 60k w/o doing anything but oil changes and I can fit 2 golf bags w/ 2 pull cars w/o a problem).
    Stop thinking that Civic/RSX are so good. If they are, the annual sales will show it. They are good for what they are. Peace of mind and good value. For the sake of everyone here, give your boyfriend a *treat* and maybe he'll let you near his GS (Lexus) after you wrecked your first SI. Btw, if you think the 00 SI are so great (and I believe you have 2), why did you sell it?? From what you said, they are so rare and dealerships want brand new prices for them and people steal them. If that's the case, why not keep the higher redline 00 SI? Maybe in 5 years, it'll be a classic. ;)
  • I didn't lump Acura in the mix of Lexus comparison wise .. I just said that I am a fan of those cars primarily. I didn't say Acura was on par with Lexus nor is this the room to discuss that. Some models I prefer from Acura but for all out luxury you gotta go with the LS430 as Acura doesn't offer a competitor for it .. or the GS300-430.

    As for my commute .. I leave my house at 8:15 and am at work by 9:00 going a distance of about 20 miles. There are moments where I have to do 45 but mostly I go around 60-65 and sometimes faster if I feel the need. Where I live isn't necessarily the boonies but it's not downtown either. It's a suburban area and I work in a suburban area. When I am on the highway travelling I average about 80MPH or I keep up with the fastest car (which going to FL is usuallly around 85-90MPH. I feel sorry for alot of cars, including the A4, if they were in a wreck going 100MPH.

    I've owned a car that had low end in sacrifice for high end power and I hated it. I would rather be in my 00 SI where you shift at 4000RPM during normal driving. If I have a choice between the 2 I'm gonna take high end power. I think the new SI and RSX engines are a good compromise.

    The VW may very well have a nicer interior, better seats, etc. but if you don't want it you don't want it. Before I bought the SI there was a red 01 GLX GTI at the dealer where I work .. nice car. The previous owner had it lowered with VW installed springs, tinted windows .. VERY nice car. But I don't know enough people with trouble-free VW's to take that plunge.

    I have never said that VW isn't a nice car .. it is .. but until I know that their quality is without glitches I can't see myself paying more for a VW than a Honda/Acura. I coulda leased a 02 3.0 Quattra A4 right about the time I got rid of my old car for the 02 SI but I guess it's just a fear of the unknown that kept me out of it. It was back when they were offering $399 lease deals on them. We were real close to taking the plunge but luckily we didn't.

    Why should I stop thinkin the Civic/RSX are so good? To me, and alot of other people, they are. Just as I'm sure the VW/Audi's appear to be so good to you. People are allowed to have preferences. And my boyfriend actually has a LS400 which is a nice car but again something I wouldn't want to drive on a daily basis.

    Since you asked, I got rid of my 00 SI because it had been in an accident before I bought it and I didn't know the severity of it. After we bought the second 00 SI I started to notice that my doors didn't close as solidly as the other one that had not been in an accident. This alone wasn't enough to make me get rid of it but when the Honda dealer offered me $12,200 (kbb excellent trade at the time) for a SI with 41,000 miles and offered to sell me the new one for $16,300 .. it was a deal I couldn't refuse.

    99-00 SI's are rare on the dealer's lot. Especially one's without serious mods. And some dealers do want brand new prices for a clean SI. Look at they have one 00 for around $16,598. New MSRP was $17,500. I didn't say people steal them either... I said that the engine is why people usually steal them because it can be used in any other Civic. I've never had one stolen or known anyone who has had one stolen. But I'm sure it happens.
  • pda97pda97 Posts: 91
    You're a very passionate debater, misguided and uninformed, but very passionate nevertheless.

    No matter how much you tried to convince "hamproof" that you didn't direct any personal attacks at him (?), the more you failed miserably. And saying things like "....maybe the GTI they tested was broke .. which wouldn't surprise me since it's a VW." is the typical crap that Honda likes to hear people propagate. My sis has a 01 Jetta VR6 with over 30K trouble-free miles on it.

    There is no substitute for displacement. The VTEC engines have good power at the top end. But you need a healthy dose of torque to pull. The RSX-R can easily keep up with the 1.8T GTI on the flat as far as 0-60 goes. But as soon as you hit a grade (i.e. going uphill), the 1.8T will start to pull away. Load both cars up with passengers, and the difference will be more pronounced. As stated before, you need torque to pass. With the VTEC, you'll need to down shift. It would take the VTEC more effort to pass. It cannot give you that "pin your back against the seat" feeling.

    Hamproof - I disagree with you. The Civic Si is not a cheap car. Remember, this car retailed for over $19K originally (typical Honda arrogance). Only when Honda realized that it was outgunned by the competition that it lowered the price to below $16K. And it's still not selling. If they drop it to below $15K, maybe this "Honda basher" will pick up a copy (and pray that Oscar Jackson comes up with a supercharger :)
  • Uninformed? Misguided? Isn't that a personal attack? Difference is, I don't care and there's no basis for those comments. And for the record it was seguy saying that I made personal comments against him. Truth is, I just said that anybody who couldn't make a 2.0L 160HP engine faster than a 1.7 127HP engine musta had some issues on their test drive. It's the same thing as someone saying a 2.0L Jetta with 115HP is just as quick as a 1.8T with 180HP.

    30,000 miles and no problems? Wow, that's great. Now why don't you come back in .. let's say ... 100,000 miles and let us know how it's doing. Honda isn't trying to propagate VW's lack of reliability. Consumer sources like JD Powers and CR do a good enough job for them.

    Actually, it's been shown the GTI would be trying to keep up with RSX-S on a flat surface .. not vice versa .. but I digress because that's semantics. And why exactly would the GTI pull away on a grade? That's why they make a thing called a transmission so if you are not in the optimal gear for performance you can downshift .. that's also why the RSX-S has one of the best 6-speed trannys out there. What's the big problem with downshifting? I rather enjoy shifting. Honda/Acura make what are arguable the best manual transmissions on the market so why not take advantage of it?

    And let's be honest here .. no 180HP or 200HP is going to give you that "pin your back against the seat feeling". If that could be accomplished with such little HP then the market for 350Z's, S2000's, M3's, etc would be almost nonexistent.
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