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Dieselstation Car Forums > The Cool Wall > The Cool Wall > Uncool
Might as well jump on the bandwagon here...

The Honda Civic CRX del Sol was a 2-seater front-engined, front wheel drive, targa top convertible manufactured by Honda in the 1990s. Based on the Civic platform, the del Sol was the successor to the popular Honda CR-X. It debuted in 1992 in Japan and the United Kingdom, and 1993 in the United States.

The Spanish name del Sol translates as of the sun, and refers to the car's opening roof. It was not a full convertible, featuring a removable hardtop that stowed in the trunk and a retractable rear window for that "convertible" feel. Trunk space was reduced from 10.5cf to 8.3cf while the targa was stowed.

In many markets the CR-X naming convention was dropped from the del Sol line as it was distinctly different from earlier models, which were hatchbacks and not targas. Starting with the 1995 models, Honda dropped the 'Civic' name from the del Sol in the Americas. In Europe, the del Sol tag was dropped in 1995, and the car was known as the new CRX.

Production and sales ended with the 1997 model in the U.S. and 1998 elsewhere, with a total of slightly fewer than 75,000 models sold in America. The car was replaced by the high-performance S2000 roadster in 1999.

The CRX del Sol, known as the Civic del Sol in the USA and the new CRX in Europe (CR-X del-sol until 1995 when the del Sol was dropped in Europe) was first introduced to Japan in 1992, and Europe and North America in 1993 in two trim levels, The S and the SI (The European market came with the Japanese-market SiR (called the VTi in Europe) and the US-market Si (called the ESi in Europe). The base "S" model (called the VXi in Japan from 1992-1994, but after 1995 called the VGi) came with a 1.5 liter SOHC 16-valve four cylinder engine and rode on 13" steel wheels. The Japanese VXi/VGi versions came with a Honda D15B engine. This was an entry level VTEC engine that produces 130 bhp (97 kW; 132 PS), matching the power of the 1.6 Si version. Despite the body resemblance to a mid-engined car design, the del Sol shared a front-engined design with the contemporary Honda Civic.

The uplevel "Si" (called the "ESi" in Europe) model came standard with a 1.6 liter SOHC 16-valve four cylinder engine with Honda's VTEC. The Si also came with 14" alloy wheels which were offered in an optional body color-matched paint scheme on Samba Green models, power side mirrors, cruise control, rear disc brakes and a front anti-sway bar for improved handling.

The VTEC trim level (called the "SiR" in Japan and the "VTi" in Europe) was added in 1994 in the United States (The CR-X Model in Japan had the B16A engine with 167 hp (125 kW) though), with the first appearance of a 160 hp (119 kW) Honda DOHC VTEC B-series engine in a U.S.-spec Honda; similar to the B16A found in the JDM Civic SiR-II. This trim level came with bigger front brakes, larger front anti-sway bar, additional rear anti-sway bar and wider tires.

On all models, the only options were a rear spoiler, custom floor mats, an automatic transmission, heated mirrors, front fog lights (95 onwards) traction contol system, limited slip diff, and air conditioning.

An option available in Japan and Europe was the TransTop, an electric mechanism which retracted the targa top into the trunk via a push of a button. The roof is operated by flicking two catches above the windows, then holding down a button. The trunk lid raises vertically and two arms extend into the targa top. After the latches have been flicked back up, the arms pull the targa into the trunk lid, which lowers back down with the targa inside. Several enthusiasts have made the conversion from targa to trans but it is not recommended as it compromises structural integrity.


How the TransTop works:

^Nice, that top is ridiculous!

I think the del Sol is mildly cool. It's an interesting/odd car that seems like it's pretty fun to drive. On the other hand, it's kind of dorky looking and is still basically a Civic.
Believe me, it was an absolute hoot to drive. It was kind of crumbling under the mileage I was putting on it, so my dad made me sell it. He insisted, I have something reliable. I had the opportunity to buy it back several years later, but I was outbid. It still hangs out in the neighborhood my parents live in, so I see it all the time...I'm tempted to leave a note on it saying I'll buy it back...but I think it's time to move on.

Mine was a '94 Si with the TransTop in Samba Green. It looked EXACTLY like the one in the first photo.
Perfect car for this guy:

They're nowhere near COOL, but they are funky and interesting. I like them but I wouldn't roll up in one at someone's house and expect them to understand why.
QUOTE(UserDrew @ Oct 20 2009, 07:20 AM) *
Perfect car for this guy:

I look nothing like that.
I've never liked these cars. Never understood why people are so fascinated by them to be honest. Not uncool, but not cool either.
That is the most counter productive roof mechanism ever. The guy could have gotten out, removed the top and stowed it in the boot 20 seconds before the mechanical mechanism finished.

That being said, they are neat cars, and attractive. I'd go with neutral, bordering on cool.
^ Yeah, but it was such a great party trick...
Jiggly Blubber
This car can only be cool if the trunk is made into a little pickup truck payload.
Mr b00st
uncool. What they did was take a civic, and make it more expensive, less useful, floppier, and goofier looking - as well as not any better handling. Which is a shame, because it was a good concept - sort of a 914 for modern times. But my single experience with a del Sol ('95 VTec with a few mods) was faintly awful. And there's also the fact that it lost an impromptu drag race against my old Jetta, which wasn't exactly the epitome of fastness.
QUOTE(moe @ Oct 20 2009, 09:27 PM) *
I look nothing like that.

It was marketed towards hairdressers and people who look like that guy in the picture. They were trendy little cars in the '90s and are uncool now.
I remember when I first saw a pic of these little cars. I though, "Wow, Honda is coming out with an inexpensive mid-engined runabout."

Then I was aware of the reality that its FWD. Looks can be deceitful.

Fail = Uncool
B16 engine with some cams and basic mods turned out to be pretty quick cars.
With the aftermarket for these cars they're more than capable to handle anything out there on the road.
Stock they sucked but built they ruled.
I think they're cool for their low weight and capabilities of being quite good.
I'm an optimist I guess. tongue.gif
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