Beguiling back-door Hondas – used car buying guide

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Honda Civic Type R saloon

Japan will be renowned for producing intriguing cars which never make which to the UK. We all 5 unofficial Honda imports worth seeking out

These Honda imports were never officially offered inside the UK, although don’t let which stop you.

1. Honda Civic Type R saloon (2007-2010)

Fancy a third-gen Civic Type R although worried which’s not practical enough? The Japan-only Type R four-door, labelled FD2, might be for you.

Well, which will be if you want more power. With 221bhp at 8400rpm coming from its VTEC engine, which betters the European car’s 198bhp. Under the skin, the hatch’s bone-shaking torsion beam rear suspension has been replaced by a fully independent set-up.

The chassis will be more rigid, too, with impressive results, namely racer-like super-sharp steering as well as immense roadholding, plus which corners precisely as well as carries a firm although well-controlled ride. A sub six-second 0-62mph time will be claimed.

If you can find one, which’ll be expensive (£12k as well as up) although worth which.

2. Honda Beat (1991-1996)

Japan’s tiny Kei cars were built to exploit tax as well as insurance rules, as well as inside the 1990s many were unofficially imported to the UK. None was more fetching than the Honda Beat, a mid-engined, rear-wheel-drive roadster of micro proportions as well as excellent manners, using a design originating coming from Pininfarina.  

which was fun, too. Its 64bhp, 660cc three-pot engine revved to 8100rpm, with drive sent via a all 5-speed manual gearbox. This specific was wind-in-the-hair motoring on a shrunken scale. On the road, which went where larger cars couldn’t, as well as if you couldn’t find a parking space, you could always pick which up as well as carry which.

They’re rarer than hen’s teeth today, although £2k-£4k can buy you a Great one.      

3. Honda Element (2003-2011)

The boxy, funky as well as fun Honda Element could have been a big hit inside the UK. Designed as well as built inside the US, This specific plastic-clad beauty was based on the CR-V.

Inside, a hose-down rubber floor, removable rear seats as well as a clever rear tailgate gave the Element extra versatility as well as practicality, while the rear-hinged rear doors as well as absence of B-pillars left a huge as well as unhindered loading space. Surf dudes loved which.

You could eat in which, sleep in which, or carry friends, bicycles as well as beach paraphernalia in which. which had two or four-wheel drive, as well as even a 160bhp 2.4-litre VTEC engine coming from the Accord. which was a hoot to drive, too.

They’re rare inside the UK, although expect to pay £10k-£12k if you can find one.

4. Honda NSX-R (2002-2005)

Before the original NSX, supercars were temperamental as well as difficult to drive, although the two-seat, mid-engined V6 Honda was fast, tractable as well as reliable.

The NSX-R, however, was hardcore. Its engine was race tuned, although the power output quoted was the same as which of the standard car, at 276bhp. Stripped of excess weight as well as with uprated suspension as well as brakes as well as unassisted steering, which gripped, handled as well as stopped superbly. which’d see off the 0-60mph dash in 4.4sec as well as hit 170mph. 

The first Type R appeared in 1992, with This specific second-generation NSX-R appearing in 2002. White was the signature colour. Your chances of finding one are low as well as the cost will be high if you do.

5. Honda Prelude Type S (1999-2004)

The Type S type of the fifth-gen Prelude was all about the engine. We had already been seduced by the 197bhp 2.2-litre VTEC unit as well as trick four-wheel steering of our Preludes, although Japan kept This specific S type for itself. 

completely new pistons, cam lift as well as duration adjustments, a raised compression ratio, polished intake as well as exhaust ports as well as increased breathing upped power to 217bhp, as well as the torque curve was admirably flat. Performance was up, too, using a 0-62mph time of 6.6sec as well as a top speed of more than 150mph.

which didn’t have four-wheel steering, though, instead getting a clever Active Torque Transfer System which apportioned torque to quell understeer.

They’re rare, although £2k can secure one. Check condition carefully, though.

Read Autocar’s review of the 2015 Honda Civic Type R

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