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Old 03-09-2011, 11:35 AM   #1
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Default Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

Hey Guys,

Hope I've come to the right place. To cut right to the chase I want to know if a stock Honda Civic motor can handle boost and if so how much?

A little background. I'm a Mustang guy and have been all my life. The last 8 years or so I've had my 03 Cobra. Over the course of the years I've rebuilt the motor from a bare block. Fun ride and I really enjoy it. It puts down over 500 hp and 500 ft/lbs to the tires.

However I've always wanted to play with turbos and more specifically a 4 cylinder turbo'd car. I've searched around and initially was going to get a Neon SRT4 but they are hard to come by and when you do they seem to have been beat to death.

I've seen a few turbo'd civics over the years but have no idea what went into making that work. I'm hopping for a fairly low budget project where I can pick up a used Civic like an 02 or there about year (although I'm open to options) and put on a turbo.
I imagine fuel pump upgrade, injectors and a few other basics right? a tune and hopefully be good to go. I'd really like to be able to tune and tinker with the tune too myself if at all possible.

So how does it work guys? is there a specific year honda that's harder to do than others I should avoid? are there kits out there or do you guys piece it together yourself? I'm certainly not afraid of swinging a wrench and have done plenty in my time. I've built a couple V8 Rangers too. My favorite been the full time AWD v8 Ranger. A blast to drive that too.

Thanks for any pointers and help guys. I'm hoping to pick up a car in the next few weeks pending the feed back and info I can find out.

Something like this maybe?
http://kansascity.craigslist.org/ctd/2256264155.html

Malcolm
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Old 03-09-2011, 11:55 AM   #2
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

oh boy, everyone is going to tell you to search, research, search, and research some more. Theres so much info on turbo hondas its unreal. I could sit here and give you info but it would be like writing a novel. What route you take is going to depend on your goals, and how much money you want to spend. Personally I would stick to honda civics in the years from 88-00. The 01+ civics can be turboed but are a bit more complicated due to all new design. The earlier models are easier to work with IMO.
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Old 03-09-2011, 11:57 AM   #3
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

Have you tried doing a search?
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Old 03-09-2011, 11:59 AM   #4
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

Ok, very broad question, but the simple answer is absolutely. I dont have time to tell you the full story and what I would do but if it were me, get a 92-2000 civic, integra, and call up a company like full-race, AFI turbo, speedfactory, etc and they can set you up with a nice turbo kit for like 3k. Then get your tuning platform, chrome, s300, AEM, Motec, whatever you want, and go tune. A turbo kit for our cars can be put on over a weekend, not a huge deal. Tuning platforms run from 300-3k depending on how complicated you want it.
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Old 03-09-2011, 12:05 PM   #5
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

+1 for 88-00 civic/integra/prelude.
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Old 03-09-2011, 12:15 PM   #6
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

Cool, thanks guys. So the 88 through 2000 is the year I want to aim for. Good to know.

Is it the electronics or emissions that makes 2001 and up harder to deal with?

Are there any articles out there with some step by step pics or other interesting detail on turbo'ing a civic specifically? I'm pretty familiar with turbos in general but not sure on some details like how much boost can the stock motor hold? 5 or 6lbs? or can you run more?

While turbo kits are super easy I like to tinker and would probably like to find parts and piece it together. Are there specific turbo sizes or brands I should look for?

Any turbo cars in Kansas City area that wouldn't mind showing me under the hood and sharing some secrets like who tunes your car etc?

Thanks for the info guys.
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Old 03-09-2011, 12:16 PM   #7
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rollinkhutis View Post
Have you tried doing a search?
What do you think?
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Old 03-09-2011, 12:17 PM   #8
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

This is a little older of a car, but its just to show whats possible.
http://www.honda-tech.com/showthread...hlight=600+b16
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Old 03-09-2011, 12:32 PM   #9
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

...can you turbo a civic motor.. Lulz.

Does a Bear **** in the woods?
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Old 03-09-2011, 12:48 PM   #10
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

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Originally Posted by MalcolmV8 View Post
Cool, thanks guys. So the 88 through 2000 is the year I want to aim for. Good to know.

Is it the electronics or emissions that makes 2001 and up harder to deal with?

Are there any articles out there with some step by step pics or other interesting detail on turbo'ing a civic specifically? I'm pretty familiar with turbos in general but not sure on some details like how much boost can the stock motor hold? 5 or 6lbs? or can you run more?

While turbo kits are super easy I like to tinker and would probably like to find parts and piece it together. Are there specific turbo sizes or brands I should look for?

Any turbo cars in Kansas City area that wouldn't mind showing me under the hood and sharing some secrets like who tunes your car etc?

Thanks for the info guys.
The 01-05 civics have no distributor. (electronic ignition) timing is controlled by a OBD2 ecu and also has a returnless fuel setup. The tuning aspect of these is a bit more limited. When I owned one, the best management system you could run on it was a emanage (piggy back). Now I think if you want something better you only have a couple of options. I think theres a system for the K series engines (hondata) you can run with it or maybe the AEM FIC. Or else you have to have a stand alone system. I could be wrong. I stopped researching these years ago when I got rid of the car. Thats why we all said to stick to the earlier models because they are easier and cheaper to tune and have more engine management options.

The stock honda motors can usually hold 6-10psi of boost, depending on how well it is tuned.
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Old 03-09-2011, 12:48 PM   #11
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

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...can you turbo a civic motor.. Lulz.

Does a Bear **** in the woods?
LOL more correctly I should have worded that can you turbo a "stock" civic motor without it blowing up? or are you guys putting in lower compression pistons prior to boosting?
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Old 03-09-2011, 12:53 PM   #12
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

I've seen comparable questions posted about other make and model vehicles by Honda people. Everyone starts somewhere.

Some people might not think it worthwhile to turbo some cars. There are good reasons for this, depending on the vehicle!

His question is totally valid. He seems aware that people have turboed Civics, but he wants to know more about that and if there are certain models or years he should steer clear of. Again, a perfectly valid question.

I know a lot of people turbo the '88-'00 Civics (3 generations total) and I'm used to seeing loads of '92-'00 Civics (that's two generations) turboed. I personally don't have a lot of experience with it, but I know OBDII is looked down on for a lot of modifications such as this. My understanding is it's harder to tune with. But you can do an OBDI conversion.

I won't lie, FI is not my specialty by far.

If you check out the '01-'05 Civic section you'll see those cars don't seem quite as popular as the earlier generations. I know the D17 isn't really much like the D15s and D16s you'll find in previous generations of US Civics. The parts don't really interchange and for that reason there probably isn't quiet as much of a selection of aftermarket parts for them.

I know for turboing the '92-'95 and '96-'00 Civics, a lot of people will prefer the D16Z6 ('92-'95 1.6L SOHC VTEC) engine over the D16Y8 ('96-'00 1.6L SOHC VTEC) because of oil flow issues on the latter IIRC.

There are also DOHC engines that can be swapped into those Civics (the '01-'05 models can swap the K-series in, but it's pricier IIRC). So you might want to look at that (plus FI) as an option as well.

Really wish I could help you out more, but I just don't have the knowledge on this subject in particular! Your Mustang sounds sweet from your short description as well.
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Old 03-09-2011, 12:55 PM   #13
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

lol...give the guy break!! He said he owns a mustang for christs sake...lol

Yea man just do some searching on single cam turbo civic... I would suggest the 92-95 civic's, just b/c they are obd1 and easier to deal with/tune...less work I guess really. And if you get the right one, you can even put a stock eclipse turbo or something small like that right onto the stock header. Bascially you said it... fuel pump, injectors, turbo, wastegate, blow off, and intercooler with management and your good. Your going to have to have someone tune this for you. I mean I dont know what your talking about doing with the car though? Like My civic has a swapped integra motor bored to a 2.0l and puts out over 600hp, but thats dual cam with alot of work done. Are you looking to build the stock motor and make power, or just buy a beater and turbo the stock motor and play with it? Too many options...just search more. The stock motor is a d16.. just search that turbo or single cam turbo...
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Old 03-09-2011, 12:57 PM   #14
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

What's Your power goal and exactly how much are you willing to spend
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Old 03-09-2011, 12:58 PM   #15
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

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LOL more correctly I should have worded that can you turbo a "stock" civic motor without it blowing up? or are you guys putting in lower compression pistons prior to boosting?

both...some of these boosted stock honda motors can put down some nice numbers, but then some of these guys upgrade the rods/pistons and sleeves and go for more boost.
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Old 03-09-2011, 01:07 PM   #16
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

Have you tried doing thorough research?

- Honda owner asking





on another note, is your cobra a termi?
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Old 03-09-2011, 01:15 PM   #17
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

Thanks for all the info so far guys. This helps a ton. Sorry the questions might seem nooby to some. But hey when Honda guys come to the Cobra forums looking to buy a mustang we sure help them out

As for my goals. Mostly looking for a somewhat decent beater that I can turbo and play with. I really didn't want to sink to much money into it because I realize there 's a good chance I may blow the motor and I want to be able to rebuild if needed.

I'm a huge fan of fuel injection and have tinkered with tunes on Fords 302 V8s and would love to learn about tuning turbos but that's not required. More just like a bonus.

If I can take a stock honda civic and put as much as 10lbs of boost on there I'd be all for it. Sounds like a blast.

I'm hoping to spend no more than say 2 to 3K on turbo mods piecing it together myself. We'll see how that goes.

I was aiming for the 02 or so year model because I like the way they look and they are slightly newer. Miles are in acceptable ranges like 80 ~ 100k and they are priced reasonably. If it's possible to make one of these turbo'd I'd probably be all for that.

The only thing that turns me off on the 92-00 models is the mileage on the ones I'm finding. I'm a bit worried about buying a car with 200k miles and slapping on a turbo with 10lbs of boost and just blowing it up lol.

Like I said lots of good info up there so far. Really appreciate the feed back guys. I'm getting excited. I see a turbo'd honda in my driveway in the very near future

Oh and if any of you like Mustangs you can check out a few pics of mine here
http://www.v8-ranger.com/cobra/ (I expect 0 hits LOL). It has lower than stock compression with 8.15:1 and runs a ported and pullied blower and some other stuff lol.
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Old 03-09-2011, 01:20 PM   #18
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexDphoto View Post
Have you tried doing thorough research?

- Honda owner asking





on another note, is your cobra a termi?
Well this thread is part of my research. Do you guys not like to chat cars and turbos and help out a fellow car enthusiast wanting to do something similar? I love chatting cars with other guys and it's a great way to learn.

Yup Cobra is a terminator. Bought it brand new in 03. Fun little ride. I posted a link above with a few pics.
Mods to if are something like this:
Stieg stage IV port, 2.76 Billetflow with four idlers, LFP heat exchanger, UPR CAI
19cc diamond pistons, mafia, twin GT pumps, dual FPDM, 26 spline, spec 3+, MGW shifter, Bassani cat'd X, Borla Stingers, DynoJet wideband, speedhut gauges with speed of sound pods. MM Caster/Camber plates. Hood Shocks. 170F thermostat.
17x10.5
Lowered
IRS brace after cracked diff cover.

I realize there's a lot of acronyms in there that probably don't always make sense. I get the same thing reading you guys threads and posts
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Old 03-09-2011, 01:27 PM   #19
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MalcolmV8 View Post
Oh and if any of you like Mustangs you can check out a few pics of mine here
http://www.v8-ranger.com/cobra/ (I expect 0 hits LOL). It has lower than stock compression with 8.15:1 and runs a ported and pullied blower and some other stuff lol.
Zinc Yellow. This was like what I wanted as my first car, only a whole lot better (I was down with getting just a basic Zinc GT, but mom was not).

One thing I never liked about them is the steering wheel though. And I'm not a big fan of most aftermarket units as well.

I love your car. I bet it sounds great.
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Old 03-09-2011, 01:29 PM   #20
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

Build it right the first time instead of doing it twice. Know what power goal you want and go for it. Save and get a really nice turbo kit that will fit your power goal. You May only want 250hp today but tommorrow you might want 500hp
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Old 03-09-2011, 01:29 PM   #21
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MalcolmV8 View Post
LOL more correctly I should have worded that can you turbo a "stock" civic motor without it blowing up? or are you guys putting in lower compression pistons prior to boosting?
Don't listen to all the D-bags on here. Notice all the ones saying dumb **** never offered a single word of help. It's because they have no clue and H-T is a place where they all come and put their useless .02 in. I'm a 4cyl person but understand why most V8 guys dislike us. Ignorant kids make everyone look bad. Anyways to help you out a bit...

I'd look into finding an obd-1 car that is already swapped with a B series engine. There is more potential and they are stronger in stock form. Piecing together a kit is a good idea because you can pick up parts here and there. Buying a full kit for 3,000 can be hard on the wallet and sometimes people arent looking for all that. There are deals to be had if you know what to look for. Stay away from ching chong ebay crap. I have 3,500 into my setup but that's from stock to dyno tuned and ready to go. Also includes upgrades that kit's don't have. Fuel pump,injectors,clutch,arp headstuds,wideband a/f, engine managment and of course tuned. There are also people selling kits that they have already pieced together and decided to upgrade. They can be found for 1000-2000 depending on what parts it includes. You also mentioned psi. This really means nothing because of turbos being different sizes and how much they can flow. I'd say you'd be happy with a t3/to4e 50 or 57 trim and .63 ar These can be found from 300-600 dollars depending. I'm running 12psi and making right at 260whp but it's an ls motor. On my new motor on the same psi it'll probably break 300whp easy.
I'll see what else I can dig up for you as far as reference material.

Here is something you can check out............
http://www.beesandgoats.com/boostfaq/g2icturbo.html
http://www.honda-tech.com/showthread.php?t=1263795
http://www.homemadeturbo.com/ 'gotta sign up'
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Old 03-09-2011, 01:36 PM   #22
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

Hell if your making over 500ftlbs/tq, I don't know what more a honda can offer considering gas mileage, but then thatll go down hill once you get tired of the power it makes after a week...
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Old 03-09-2011, 01:36 PM   #23
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

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Well this thread is part of my research. Do you guys not like to chat cars and turbos and help out a fellow car enthusiast wanting to do something similar? I love chatting cars with other guys and it's a great way to learn.
its just harmless hazing, don't worry about it. I came from V8s too.
Props to you for checking into turboing a Honda actually.
My uncle has the Ford horse blinders on badly. Ever since he was a kid and saw some Mustang Boss Cobrajet something or other, do a burnout on the freeway, he was Ford only guy, won't even look at anything else.

I turboed my first stock d16 engine at 246,000 miles. 10psi
just a new headgasket and head studs, instead of head bolts. No other engine work.
Drove it for 20,000 miles that way, leaked a little oil, no biggie.
Swapped the engine, though there was no reason other than the quest for another cam and more power.
Still have that engine in the garage. I could put it in this weekend and Im sure would go another 20,000 miles or more turboed.

Anyhow, welcome aboard.
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Old 03-09-2011, 01:45 PM   #24
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

seeing how you are from kansas city man here is my suggestion to you

mkc
revline
jtauto

these are and have been the top honda guys in kc for a long while now, and they are all awsome in the advice they give built off of there experience. there shops there, and do great work as well

I got my stock gsr in my crx done and tuned by mkc it did well 510/323@28psi thats a stock engine and ran 10's I loved it
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Old 03-09-2011, 01:50 PM   #25
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Default Re: Can you turbo a honda civic motor? - Cobra owner asking.

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Hell if your making over 500ftlbs/tq, I don't know what more a honda can offer considering gas mileage, but then thatll go down hill once you get tired of the power it makes after a week...
My point is he should buy the right parts now instead of upgrading later. Like t1 said set a goal you want and go after it instead of upgrading and spending twice. Get a nice turbo kit that will insure him for the future if he ever want more hp.

Get a nice turbo kit now and in the future if you do decide more power, all you will need is a built engine and more boost
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