By on June 21, 2013


Derek writes:

Where do you find a clean, unmolested Integra Type-R in Toronto? In somebody else’s driveway.

The peculiarities of Canada’s auto market meant that modifying Hondas became one of the only avenues of affordable speed for young people. With a market size 1/10th of America’s, our choices are limited from the get-go. The most popular car, for years and years, has been the Honda Civic. So what do you get when a large percentage of car enthusiasts are able to buy cheap but well-maintained stick shift Civics? Well, for one thing, extraordinarily high rates of theft for both Civics and the better, VTEC equipped Hondas. One of the reasons I got my Miata in the first place is because any Civic, Integra, Prelude or Accord cost an outrageous amount to insure. An Integra GS-R would have been $330 a month versus $150 a month for my Miata (and that’s with no accidents or tickets).

It’s really easy to find a cheap Civic with a well-done VTEC swap, but that’s led to the virtual extinction of the Civic Si, the Integra GS-R and of course, the Integra Type-R. Anybody that still has a Type-R keeps theirs in a garage. Otherwise it will be stolen, crashed, or both. I was amazed that none of the cars I came across online had salvage or theft titles. Then again, I only found two.

Both are yellow, which is not my choice of color. Both have relatively low miles, but they go for between $12,500$14,500. Fair money for these cars, but more than I’d ever want to pay. I know that the Type-R chassis has extra welding and less sound deadening, and there’s the specialness of it being an original Type-R and all that, but knowing that I could have a better performing Integra sedan (which I prefer to the hatch) built for me, with my choice of engine (a B18C from a GS-R, mated to an LSD gearbox from a Japanese Integra), for half the cost, is too appealing to ignore. And it wouldn’t be yellow.

Doug writes:

There really aren’t any Integra Type Rs around here.  Craigslist, for example, has precisely zero. has just one.  It’s black and it features a K20Z1 swap, which I hope is an engine.  It also boasts – and I’m quoting from the ad here – “15×8 Rays Gramlight 57dr” as well as “dc2R red Recaros.”  And ladies and gentlemen, you’re unlikely to find those ever again in one place, at least if you believe the seller.  I personally have no idea what they are.

Anyway, this car is a 2000 with 75,000 miles and the seller is asking $16,000.  If you’re questioning whether it’s worth it, don’t bother, as he lists right in the ad that it’s “worth every bit of what I’m asking.”  Tough, but fair.

A stock example doesn’t show up until I expand my search radius to 500 miles.  It’s a 2001 model in Virginia, yellow and beautiful.  Mileage is at 115,000 and pricing is very reasonable at $12,000.  This one is stunningly stock, right down to the shift knob, which looks like the top end of a screwdriver stuck in the shift boot.

The only problem with an ITR purchase, on my end, is that it comes with a huge bill: I’d have to spring for a garage.  That’s because the ITR does three things: it looks good, it drives well, and it gets stolen.  And I wouldn’t want to buy a new K20Z1 or dc2R red Recaros.  I wouldn’t even know where to look.


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20 Comments on “Derek And Doug’s Fantastic Crapwagons: Acura Integra Type-R...”

  • avatar

    Two days ago, here in OKC, I saw a “mature” lady driving a pristine black type R. Still had the original wheels and badging and no Pep Boys add-on crap. My guess is that she didn’t let her teen-age boy mess with it. I wish she would have stopped somewhere so I could have talked to her about it…

  • avatar

    Why are modfied ricer cars considered molested?

    I used to race a white Type-R on the way to work about once a week in my Beretta took him couple of tries againist the torquier V6 to figure out what VTEC was then he could keep up!

    You don’t see to many Acura Integra base models in northern Ohio. Type-R hardly ever like it used to be with Honda Manufacturering here. There used to be twin yellow ones show up Mid-Ohio track days. The ones I see on occasion are very beat up and well rusted out like most Acura products from that era.

    • 0 avatar

      “Why are modfied ricer cars considered molested?”

      The type, quality and quantity of the modifications to the cars typically reduces the value. The vast amount of hack-job mods have led many prospective buyers of clean, solid examples to steer clear of modified boy-racer owned examples as they’re considered “damaged goods”. Even somehwat tastefully done ones fetch less at auction that clean stock ones.

    • 0 avatar

      “Why are modfied ricer cars considered molested?”

      Story: when I was home from college a decade ago, my dad and I were working in the garage when we saw my little brother and his friend walking through with a Sawzall heading towards the friend’s Civic. They were going to cut a targa top in it. My dad intercepted and told them if they were going to do something that stupid, they weren’t allowed to do it in his driveway.

      Teenagers are morons. This is your answer.

  • avatar

    Talk about resale if those owners are getting anywhere near their asking price for those cars. You might just have to add the Teg Type R to your investment cars list, Doug.

    “The peculiarities of Canada’s auto market meant that modifying Hondas became one of the only avenues of affordable speed for young people. With a market size 1/10th of America’s, our choices are limited from the get-go. The most popular car, for years and years, has been the Honda Civic.”

    Talk about insular Toronto thinking. This is not necessarily the case for all of Canada, but is for the GTA. In Southwestern Ontario, we mostly run Detroit style. A smattering if kinda quick sport compacts but for the most part its LS1 FTW.

    • 0 avatar

      I spent my summers in a small town near Ottawa, and the hills were alive with the sound of buzzy single cam D-Series motors breathing through Crappy Tire coffee can exhausts. Your proximity to Detroit may have an impact on things.

      Anyways, notice I said ONE OF, not “the only”. Knee-jerk 519 thinking ;)

      • 0 avatar

        Detroit definitely has a lot to do with it. Woodward ave is only 15-20 minutes away and Saturday evenings are very active with much force-inducted V8 goodness. Plenty of exotic stuff too, but the really fast cars are the Covettes, G and F bdy cars that could be mistaken for a jet airliner taking off.

    • 0 avatar

      It probably helps that Toronto has a very high proportion of Asian immigrants (including myself).
      For most of them (us), Detroit iron isn’t very appealing, whereas the best of Europe and Japan do command respect.

      That Mustang does look/sound good though….

  • avatar

    Red Recaros sound OK. Their existence does suggest shade tree mechanic, but you never know until you look.

    As far as theft goes, go aftermarket. Get the lo-tech Club or some fancy electronic gizmo. You are going to have to replace the radio with a modern unit anyway. All of that may cost you the princely sum of 300 USD retail. And, it’s all readily detachable, so you can switch it to your next beater.

  • avatar

    Was that picture taken at Mosport DDT?

    Elbow out the window while track driving…tsk tsk…

  • avatar

    Where I live in Edmonton, Canada, if you saw someone 10 years ago in a Integra Type-S, WRX, or IS300, it was a mid-20’s gold chain/oversized t-shirt/baseball cap wearing Chinese male with a trampy girlfriend who wore too much make up/tank tops/CC handbag/hooped earrings. People change, but subcultures stay the same, so the same gold chain crowd can now be seen in 3-series, A4’s, and C-Class’s. Not a Japanese import to be found.

    • 0 avatar

      I see so many ruined A4’s (usually de-badged) looking like that.

    • 0 avatar

      Don’t forget 350Zs and G35/37 coupes.
      Those also seem to attract a certain type.

      Generally, I notice in Toronto, even the guys in the S2000s and WRXs/STis are fairly well-behaved on the roads.

      It’s the guys in Explorers, Pickups and AMGs that drive like d-bags…

  • avatar

    Wait…there’s CAR THEFT in Canada? But everyone up there seems so nice! And with the frigid winters, you’d think everyone would pull together for the greater good…

  • avatar

    Oh Integra I have such a love hate relationship with you. The Type-R is such a wonderful machine for the track, and so damn miserable on the street. Not in the supercharged Mustang “too much to handle” sort of way more like the “you just got blown away by a Sienna” way that you need to be in 3rd gear in the freeway to get any sort of acceleration. It is a horribly cheap car with a $2 stereo you can’t even hear over the interior roar. And you don’t even get all the extra JDM goodness like Recaros. Great race car though. I traded my GS-R for an SRT-4 and the Dodge seemed like a Lexus built rocket ship compared to the Integra.

    • 0 avatar
      Land Ark

      If I’m to believe everything I read in Super Street magazine in the late 90s, you obviously don’t know what you’re talking about.
      From that perspective, the Type-R was just a turned around NSX.

  • avatar

    I want to buy a stock one and lock it in a bunker. I’m calling it now, collector status. We are maybe 2-3 decades away from the $100K ITR. And it won’t have a K20

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