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 |   |  OEM-Plus 1993 Honda Civic Hatchback - Another One Saved
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OEM-Plus 1993 Honda Civic Hatchback - Another One Saved

Low mileage, rust-free 5th-gen. unicorn gets authentic parts from Mugen, Spoon Sports and J's Racing for a timeless look and feel.

Oct 17, 2020
Photographer: Jean-Paul Mata Leon

If there was one common, longstanding complaint among Honda enthusiasts lusting after the fifth-gen. Civic chassis, like this 1993 Honda Civic DX hatchback, it's that finding one in good condition has become incredibly difficult. If you are in fact lucky enough to locate an unmolested, rust-free, straight-bodied version, then prepare yourself for an asking price well above what an almost 30-year-old commuter car should ever be worthy of fetching.

1993 Honda Civic DX Mugen MF10 Wheels 01 Photo 22/22   |   OEM-Plus 1993 Honda Civic Hatchback - Another One Saved

Capturing the Unicorn

Jason Tong, owner of this EH Civic, spotted the car on Craigslist and it had all the makings of a perfect project car, including no accidents, low mileage, just one owner and, most importantly, no rust—something seldom seen when hunting for an older Honda in Canada. He adds, "Vancouver is notorious for rust, so finding this white DX with only 74,000 kms was like winning the lottery as it was a local car with no rust on the quarters!" There was no toying with the idea of using it as daily driver and just adding a set of wheels before spiraling into a full-blown build; no, in this instance, the idea was to pick up the car specifically to build.

With so many directions to go with the ultra-versatile hatchback, it can be tough to figure out your next move, but for Jason, the plan was simple and began almost immediately. "I wanted to build this vehicle as much as I could in an era-correct way and with a subtle, 'OEM-plus' mindset. No crazy kits or big wings."

1993 Honda Civic DX Mugen Front Lip 01 Photo 22/22   |   OEM-Plus 1993 Honda Civic Hatchback - Another One Saved

Previous Work Experience

Experience with the '90s chassis wouldn't be an issue, as Jason has dirtied his hands on multiple fifth-gen. hatchback and coupe projects that date all the way back to 1999. To kick off this project, the first order of business was stripping the car all the way down for a complete respray. That included cutting out the factory glass for a proper paintjob, and once it dried using all new OEM seals, nuts and bolts to give the early '90s chassis a true makeover. Though it might resemble a factory Honda hue, the color is in fact Mercedes Polar White.

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All About Options

In the photos, you'll notice the subtle Mugen front lip—verified by its overlapping of the bottom of the factory Civic bumper before turning inward at the car's main grill opening. On any given day, it might be replaced by one of Jason's other lip options from the likes of Backyard Special or Spoon Sports. Out back, an authentic Spoon wing, arguably the most knocked-off part of any '90s-era Honda, sits atop the hatch. Authenticity and variety are both major factors to Jason's build style, as he noted, "I prefer keeping everything authentic with no fake or replica parts at all, as I'm old school and a lot of parts have lasted me over the years on the cars I swapped them over from. I like having a variety of looks, hence the wheel collection I have going on and front lips as well."

That wheel collection includes both 15 and 16-in. Mugen MF10 in classis bronze, 15-in. Spoon SW388 and 16-in. Volk Racing CE28N. In addition, all of Jason's wheels are wrapped in highly capable tires. That's because this car has seen its share of action. "The car was built for track and has seen track days, but it's now going to be a nice street car for weekend drives."

1993 Honda Civic DX B18C5 Engine Photo 22/22   |   OEM-Plus 1993 Honda Civic Hatchback - Another One Saved

It's Bulking Season

Weekend drives are never boring, especially when you take into account the 2.0L swap lurking under the Civic's hood, courtesy of a bored and stroked ITR block with forged internals on the bottom end and a Supertech-enhanced valvetrain and Skunk2 Pro3 cams with adjustable gears fortifying the top end. AEM's cold-air intake and Spoon throttle body bring fresh air in while a Mugen Gymkhana header, T1R test pipe and quiet Apex'i Worldsport V2 exhaust move spent gases out. To take advantage of the mighty B-series' newfound grunt, a CTR transmission, stuffed with an ITR 4.9 final drive and ATS 1.5-way help put it to the ground. You'll notice the A/C and power steering in place, but the engine bay remains clean and functional and if it ever came down to it, could be reversed and put back to stock status pretty easily.

Even with relatively low mileage on the clock, the hatchback's suspension had aged considerably and wanting to do much more than just throwing a set of coilovers at it, Jason opted to rework all of Civic's underpinnings. A complete Hardrace bushing kit was installed along with the brand's rear camber arms. Also, in the rear you'll find an ASR subframe and sway bar combo and Function7 LCAs. Up front, Skunk2 Pro Series front camber arms are dialed in along with J's Racing roll-center adjusters and an ITR sway bar is bolted in place. All four corners ditched the squishy factory springs and probably blown shocks for ITR-spec Spoon N1 coilovers that actually sat a little too low for Jason's liking, so he had a set of CNC top hat spacers custom made to bring it up an inch. Bolted to the 5-lug converted hubs are Spoon twin-block calipers up front and factory ITR brakes in the rear, with all four relying on Project MU pads.

1993 Honda Civic DX Mugen S1 Bucket Seats Photo 22/22   |   OEM-Plus 1993 Honda Civic Hatchback - Another One Saved

If you're a fifth-gen. Civic fan, then some of, if not all of, Jason's interior choices are probably on your wish list, starting with eliminating all of the original palmy blue interior in lieu of black and grey bits. Mugen S1 buckets, shift knob and a Racing 3 steering wheel that's been capped off with the beloved NSX horn button are on par with the price-gouging optional center console that's been fitted with a trio of Defi gauges neatly tucked in place.

1993 Honda Civic DX Spoon Sports Rear Wing Photo 22/22   |   OEM-Plus 1993 Honda Civic Hatchback - Another One Saved

Another One Saved

With enough experience behind him, Jason knew exactly what he wanted from this build and how to go about making it a reality. Based on an OEM+ feel, this hatch carries plenty of details, highly sought-after authentic goods and a nice surprise within its unassuming, nicely laid out engine bay. It's the sort of build that'll have purists breathing a sigh of relief when the see it, knowing that unicorn didn't end up in the wrong hands.

Thank You:My girlfriend Annie and my family and friends, David at EvoGarage, the guys at GarageFive, Glenn at MJ Honda, all guys in the H&C chat and my dog Pepper.

1993 Honda Civic DX Mugen Front Lip 02 Photo 22/22   |   OEM-Plus 1993 Honda Civic Hatchback - Another One Saved
By Rodrez
919 Articles
OEM-Plus 1993 Honda Civic Hatchback - Another One Saved
Tuning Menu
Car: 1993 Honda Civic DX
Owner: Jason Tong
Instagram: @mashimaro9
Engine: B18C5 block stroked to 2.0L with Eagle stroker kit; Hasport engine mounts; Skunk2 Pro3 cams, Pro Series cam gears; Supertech valvesprings, oversized valves; ITR retainers; AEM hybrid cold-air intake; T1R test pipe; Apex'i Worldsport 2 catback exhaust; Mugen header, baffled oil pan, oil cap, radiator cap, thermostat, fan switch; Spoon throttle body, spark plug wires, Kevlar plug cover, radiator hoses; J's Racing teal valvecover; Hondata intake manifold gasket, S300 V3; FAL cooling fan; Koyo radiator; Tein Al-fit oil sandwich adapter, water temp sensor adapter; Walbro fuel pump
Drivetrain: Civic Type R transmission, ITR 4.9 final drive; ATS 1.5 way LSD; Exedy Stage 1 clutch; Toda flywheel; Spoon magnetic drain bolt
Suspension Spoon N1 coilovers (ITR spec); custom CNC top hat spacers; Skunk2 Pro Series front camber arms; Hardrace rear camber arms, complete bushing kit; J's Racing roll center adjusters; Function7 rear LCAs; ASR rear subframe brace, 24mm rear sway bar; JDM ITR front sway bar, power steering rack and subframe
Braking: Spoon Sports twin block calipers; OEM ITR 36mm 5-lug conversion, rotors, rear calipers, 1-in. master cylinder; Project MU B-Force front/rear pads for street, Max500 front/rear pads for track
Wheels & Tires: 16x7.5 +43 Mugen MF10; 205/45-16 Toyo R888R
15x6.5 +45 Mugen MF10; 205/50 Pirelli Trofeo R
15x6.5 +45 Mugen M7; RE11
15x6.5 +42 Spoon SW388; 205/50-15 Bridgestone RE71R
16x7 +42 Volk Racing CE28N; 205/45-16 Bridgestone RE760 Sport
Codetwentytwo custom titanium MF10 center caps, titanium lug nuts
Exterior: Mercedes Benz Polar White; Spoon Sports carbon fiber lip, rear wing; Mugen front lip; Vision Technica Type MC carbon fiber mirrors, hood dampers; JDM EG clear corner lights, thin side moldings, Access window visors
Interior: Mugen S1 bucket seats, steering wheel, pedals; Bride low position seat rails; JDM ITR rear seat backs, sedan bottom cushions, shift boot; JDM EG6 cluster, amber clock, climate control face, mirror switch; USDM optional lower center console, arm rest, NSX Type R horn button; Circuit Hero steering wheel hub; ARC titanium ball shift knob; Defi DIN oil pressure, oil temp, water temp gauges



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