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Hey I've always had a fondness for hondas but now i'm looking to tune some. I have an 89 accord and was wondering what kind of engine it has and specs on it. Its a DX. Is it worth tuning or not. I like the car but am thinking of getting a 92-95 civic hatch. So could anyone point me in the right direction for my engine or any advice in general

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My old car: 1986 Accord LX sedan.


The 1986 LX, like your 1989 DX, comes with an A20A1 2.0L SOHC (Single Over Head Cam) CVCC (Compound Vortex Controlled Combustion) with 12 valves (3 valves per cylinder) in-line 4 cylinder engine.


A20A1 specs:

Horsepower: 98 hp @ 5500

Torque: 109 ft-lbs @ 3500

Curb weight: 2529 lbs

Miles per gallon: city 19/ highway 25 (24.67 average mpg)


Advantages: displacement: if you race other SOHC CVCC Hondas, you will most likely out-power them since your SOHC CVCC engine is one of the last made and the most powerful.


Disadvantages: weight, horsepower. Unfortunately, there is a decent amount of torque that is consumed by moving the weight of the car.


The suspension is cushy, I would list this as a disadvantage, but think of the car you have. In 1989, this car was marketed to the crowd that wanted to buy an Acura Legend, but did not have Acura Legend money. The similarities are obvious in the styling of the two cars. Look at the rims for the Legend LS and the Accord LX-i, the designs are almost identical; the Legend is painted silver, the Accord is polished. The similarities continue and are not limited the aforementioned styling queues. So in the market this car was sold, the cushy suspension was an advantage for Honda, but now it is not an advantage for you.


So you have an Acura Legend wannabe without all the amenities.


Your biggest enemy is curb weight. No matter what you do, you will have to deal with the reality of having a touring car suspension on a heavy unibody chassis.




1. Prelude S intake for dual Weber side-draft carburetors, with the fuel system and carburetors.


2. New cam (your cam), take yours out and send it into JG Engine Dynamics. They will be able to lathe the cam to make the changes you specify to meet your fuel needs.


3. Turbo, you can build a box for your carburetors and switch your vacuum system to a pressure system. You might want to talk to Ford Mustang people that have more experience in this area. I think a lot of early eighties Mustang IIs ended up with turbo I-4 setups in the racing circuits at that time.


4. I have seen a 1986 Accord LX that had an H22 Prelude engine dropped in. It was actually the same color as mine. With upgraded suspension, it looked like a fun sleeper. Unfortunately, I actually owned one, so I know the magazine article left out the fact that the H22 Accord they put a spotlight on was likely a heavy car that probably looked faster than it was in reality.


My suggestion: keep the 1989 Honda Accord DX and restore it, but do not put more than 300 dollars into it. I sold my 1986 Honda Accord LX for 800 dollars with 376,000 miles on the clock. You should be able to get yours into prime condition with $300.00. Then you can either keep it, use it as back up transportation when you have your hatchback, or you can sell it and make a small profit.

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On the 1992 to 1995 hatchbacks, stay away from the Sis, correct me if I am wrong everyone, but didn't they all come with big ol' heavy moonroofs?


This leads into the same dilema I am having.


For SCCA racing, doesn't the CIvic sedan provide a stiffer chassis? On the pro level, for GT racing, they almost always use a sedan (Accord, TSX) and to a lesser extent 3-dr coupes (1200, Civc, CRX, ITR, RSX, etc.). Even the Accord, team Castrol used a V6 sedan chassis and rocked the JDM monster under the hood.


I have driven both. I have found the 3-dr coupe can be reinforced to compensate for he chassis flex, but lack the experience of really pushing a sedan (i.e. I have always kept all 4 wheels firmly planted on turns).


I think everyone will have an opinion on this one, but I would like to hear from SCCA partcipants or those who have driven both (3-dr coupe and 4-dr sedan) in more than a straight line.

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