How do you turn a B16A DOHC VTEC engine into a 13-second car?

March 14th, 2008 by NZPC

Hi Steve, I wonder if you can give me some pointers for a little project I’m getting stuck into. I have a 1990 Honda Civic SiR that’s pretty much standard except for a pod filter and exhaust. I want to build this thing up for drag racing, with the hope of running consistently in the mid-to-high 13-second bracket. To do this I know I will have to strip the car out quite hard, which I don’t mind doing, but it still needs to be street driveable (hey! got to get to work somehow!). The engine is a B16A DOHC VTEC that obviously is going to need a fair bit of work. What do I need to do? Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks, Michael S — Auckland

I’ve been writing for the NZPC for many years and in all that time no one has called me by my first name! So cough up Ed and give this man some free stuff! The first step I would take is to pull the motor out and put the two-litre in — the more cubes the better. Some Type-R cams or similar are a must, but the heads do not need a lot of work. A rewritten Honda ECU works well, as does the Hondata. Next is just as you say, put it on a diet, but safely. Before you get too carried away, check the class rules you intend to run or you may find yourself running pro import!