[home][rumors and news][model release matrix][dealer network][desktop calendar][exhaust notes][tov forums][links][search][sponsors][garage][login]

Tire Rack Upgrade Garage
 Search for a Dealer:
 Canadian Flag US Flag
 Honda Acura
There are currently no active Acura promotions
There are currently no active Honda promotions
2018 Accord Hybrid announced with starting price of $25,100 - on sale March 23
Turbocharged, Tech-Forward and Torque Vectoring: All-New 2019 Acura RDX to Debut in New York
Honda confirms production plans for Urban EV, and opens order books for 2019 delivery
Spied! 2019 Honda Pilot refresh
TOV Spies a 2019 RDX on the streets of DC!
American Honda Reports February 2018 Sales Results
Japanese Vezel MMC hints at styling updates for coming 2019 HR-V refresh
American Honda Reports January Sales Results
General Talk --> Re: Cadillac Escala reportedly headed for production
Join Discussion......
Accord --> Re: Acclaimed 2018 Accords sit on the lot
Join Discussion......
Today's Reading Links --> Re: CEC: California EV chargers will add 1 GW of peak demand by 2025
Join Discussion......
General Talk --> Re: Accord and Civic-R Named Automobile Magazine All Stars
Join Discussion......
General Talk --> Re: Self Driving Uber kills Pedestrian
Join Discussion......
Professional Motorsports --> Re: F1 - 2018 Australian Grand Prix
Join Discussion......
General Talk --> Re: Aston Marten/Red Bull/Honda powered Supercar?
Join Discussion......
General Talk --> Re: New Guy
Join Discussion......
Repair and Maintenance --> Re: 07 ACCORD V6
Join Discussion......
General Talk --> Re: Clarity PHEV vs Accord iMMD
Join Discussion......
RLX --> Re: Acura RLX Reviews
Join Discussion......
Today's Reading Links --> Re: Porsche 911 Hybrid vs NSX!
Join Discussion......
Fit (and Jazz) --> Re: Fit EV $199 lease
Join Discussion......
Professional Motorsports --> Re: Moto GP Spoiler
Join Discussion......
General Talk --> Re: Civic vs Accord
Join Discussion......
Jump to:
article details
Author Ryan Leecock
Categories Civic
Create Date October 19, 2006 18:26
Last Update October 31, 2006 19:37
Page 1

On a recent weekend jaunt to the ATL, I had the chance to log several hundred miles between our TOV Project Si and a stock '06 Civic Si. Since I've been using my '02 RSX Type-S as my daily driver for the past 57,000 miles, I figure it might be time to make some comparisons between that and Honda's latest pocket rocket. The Si has been on the market for about a year, so I'll spare you the minutiae since you are probably familiar with the Si package if you are reading this.

First, let me touch on some of the big positives in the driving experience of this car. The quick steering ratio combined with just the right steering effort is a real treat. When I installed the A-Spec suspension on my RSX, the steering effort rose considerably since the steering rack is much higher than the Si's. Add to that a considerably slower ratio and it's less willing to change direction. In the Si, you get a steering experience much closer to that of an S2000 than I do in the RSX, which is a very good thing. Speaking of suspension, the Si uses a different setup in the rear that eliminates the white-knuckled sensation from excessive toe changes on rough roads. It inspires confidence and makes it easier to drive fast on roads that aren't coffee table smooth. Another positive I cannot praise enough is the LSD in the Si: dive into a corner, mash the throttle at the apex, and the car lays down power like a champ. Trying that in my RSX yields an impressive display of smoke from the inside front tire. Honda finally answered the call that enthusiasts have been making for years and I'm jealous. Moving over to the powerplant, the engineers at Honda did their homework when designing the sound of the intake. The VTEC transition at 6000 RPM sounds wonderfully blissful and makes the price of admission worth every penny. I've never heard a stock Honda engine sound this good.

Now over to the not so good quirks. Drive-by-wire is the biggest handicap to come down the automotive pipeline since OJ gave white Ford Broncos a bad name. It's quite horrible. I almost felt like I was learning to drive a manual all over again, bucking between shifts and just general neck-snapping nastiness. The stock Si had the pre-flash ECU, so it evidenced the "rev hang" many forum users have complained about. Project Si employs the most recent Honda software, so this trait didn't exist. It's a Catch 22, though: with rev hang, there's less delay between full-throttle, redline shifts. Without rev hang, the Si contracts a case of TSXitis and has a big delay when trying to bang fast gear changes. Neither is perfect and both are compromises when lined-up next to a proper mechanical linkage. Computers are great except when asked to take over throttle duties. Sliding back behind the wheel of my RSX was great in this respect: the engine did whatever my right foot wanted at that exact moment.

So what about Project Si? Take everything you know about the performance of the Si and put it under a magnifying glass. That is Project Si. If a stock Si ranks a 6 on the overall performance scale, Project Si bumps it up to an 8 or 8.5. There is a TON more midrange power, which is where most people do 90% of their driving. This helps not only in daily driving, but also on favorite roads, requiring fewer shifts to stay in the "sweet spot" of the powerband. The valvetrain is a bit noisy due to the stiff valve springs required by the IPS K2 cams, but just dial up some volume on the stereo to drown-out the clickity-clack. The suspension could use a bit more damping; it feels a bit underdamped with the stiff springs in normal cruising. Toss it into a corner, though, and it snaps to attention. Project Si has gobs of grip that give it levels far too high to exploit sanely on the street. It is probably too stiff for a daily driver, especially if you live in an area with rutted and potholed roads, but boy it devours a corner like a fat kid at 2-for-1 taco nite. The same could be said for the exhaust: it sounds erotic, but it draws lots (too much?) attention to itself and can be a beating on your eardrums for extended trips. The optional silencer insert quiets things down to just about stock sound levels, but it gives up much of the horsepower gained in the process. This is just about the ideal Si to have for weekend sprints to track events and back with something a bit more subtle for daily driver duty.

So that's my take on the latest Honda Civic Si. It's a good car that needs a few tweaks to move it to the realm of great. If Honda could figure out a way to make drive-by-wire perfect, I might endorse it. As it stands, it's like putting Brett Favre in the game with a broken thumb: he might be able to get the job done, but imagine if he weren't injured.

reader's comments
Click Here to Submit Your Comments

Viewing Threshold (What is this?)

[fancy] [flat] [simple]
Date Thread Starter Thread
10-20-2006 15:50 tl type s   (Score: 1, Normal) acura cl-s
10-20-2006 16:36 vtecascendency
10-20-2006 22:08 jero
10-23-2006 09:38 REDDZ
10-23-2006 21:51 vtecTL1
10-30-2006 22:22 FusionSi11
10-22-2006 12:40 Price Problems.   (Score: 1, Normal) The_SiGuy
10-22-2006 13:32 RyanDL
10-22-2006 13:47 the insider
10-22-2006 20:12 blu
10-25-2006 12:40 accord1989
10-25-2006 00:20 OBDII   (Score: 1, Normal) TonyEX
10-20-2006 18:39 Thanks Ryan, so how do we get Honda to fix the DBW?   (Score: 1, Normal) Civic_Si
10-21-2006 14:32 ocspray
10-22-2006 20:06 Daniel Lee
10-22-2006 20:15 blu
10-20-2006 19:49 So then ... RSX-S or Si   (Score: 1, Normal) Atomic Frog
10-22-2006 13:27 RyanDL
10-21-2006 11:01 Why the Civic is a great car.....   (Score: 1, Normal) S800Racer
10-20-2006 17:30 Nice one   (Score: 1, Normal) soulboy
Jump to:
TOV Video: 2019 Acura RDX Walk-around with LPL Steve Hansen
Read Article....................
TOV Photo Gallery: 2018 North American International Auto Show
Read Article....................
2018 Acura RLX PR Photo Gallery
Read Article....................
TOV First Drive: 2018 Honda Accord
Read Article....................
2018 Honda Accord Specifications and Features (FINAL)
Read Article....................
2018 Honda Accord Hybrid PR Photo Gallery
Read Article....................
Contact TOV | Submit Your Article | Submit Your Link | Advertise | TOV Shop | Events | Our Sponsors | TOV Archives
Copyright © 2017 Velocitech Inc. All information contained herein remains the property of Velocitech Inc.
The Temple of VTEC is not affiliated with American Honda Motor Co., Inc. TOV Policies and Guidelines - Credits - Privacy Policy