Pros: 9000RPM, 2600lbs, .91g
Cons: Theft risk, steering wheel feels cheap
I recently has to sell my 2002 S2000 to have more dough in my bank account.
In my quest to find a cheaper car that could have the same steering, shifting, lateral grip and 9000RPM limit, there was only one choice: the type R.
Now I know owners are asking the moon for it, but when you compare it to other ''newer'' cars the type R still beats 'em.
2002 RSX type S: heavier, softer suspension,(1000$ for stiffer suspension) no LSD,(2000$ installed...) crappy tires, no front strut bar, .84 lateral G compared to the type R's .91, 8300RPM fuel cutoff compared to the type R's 8900RPM cutoff, you don't feel anything when driving at high speeds. Nice highway cruiser, great interior, but not a performer.
I know the type S is more comfy and has a nice stereo system, but in terms of performance I can't believe how much a 9 year old Integra can whoomp it!
-2002 Subaru WRX. Yeah sure you can dish out 1500$ and make it faster in a straight line, but what about the suspension? I used to own a 2003 WRX and it had TONS of body roll and 0 road feedback, awfull slow steering ratio and horrible tires, huge amount of understeer. And if you start pushing 300 HP you'll break the already horrible transmission that feels like you're pushing the stick shift through rocks...Clutch is also heavy and not durable at all. Yes there's AWD, but in terms of a performance car the type R wins it. Put 1000$ on the engine and another 1000$ on the suspension and the WRX is solid, but put 2000$ in the type R's engine and you'll have a very fast car with a stock suspension that is track ready.
-Toyota Celica GT-S: No LSD, slower 0-60 and quarter mile, sluggish transmission. It still is the R's closest competitor, as it has excellent suspension-steering-braking setup while remaining very light at about 2500 pounds; the type R is still better in every category.
-Honda Prelude: 450 pounds heavier, no LSD, slower acceleration, good brakes but not type R caliber, vague steering. It does look great though and the seating position is excellent.
I know the type R is FWD, but it does not understeer and has no torque steer, which are the two major problems with FWD cars. Aside from not being able to power-drift and do donoughts, I cannot see a problem with this FWD setup unless you turbo charge it.
The shifter action is just as solid as my old S2000, which if you know anything about cars, is the best compliment I could give to the type R.
Of course it's about .5 seconds slower in the 0-60 and a .7 seconds slower in the quarter mile, but you still end up having just as much fun going past 8000RPMs with the engine begging you to push harder:) You basically feel like the engine is going to explode, you heart rate goes up at you see the needle shaking towards 8800RPM. You shift and repeat until you get the biggest smile:)
The seating position isn't as F-1 oriented as in the S2000 and the seats aern't as comfy: these are my major complaints with the R, which kind of reminds you that it's still just a highly tuned Integra.
The S2000 gets .92g in lateral acceleration compared to the type R's .91g. Translation: both cars have virtually no body roll in a tight corner. Find me another FWD car that has more than .90g from the factory! An RX-8 gets .88g!
The Acura Integra type R is overhyped and overpriced, I agree...BUT, when you look at the facts, there is no used car on the market today that has better acceleration, better steering, better lateral acceleration, better brakes and is RELIABLE for the same price. You can get a used 1993 RX-7 for the same price as a ITR, but good luck dishing out 4000$ for a new engine every few years.
Trust me, I owned an S2000, could of managed to keep it but thought the price difference dit not match the fun factor of a type R.
The type R will go to 9000RPM and that rush from 5500RPM to redline is more amazing that the turbo of my old WRX from 4000RPM to 7000RPM.
Sure it won't push you back in your seat like a torquey Mustang or WRX, but the FEEL of the type R from the clutch, steering to the buttery smooth shifter that makes a race car ''click'' noise when it gets into gear is something that you must experience.
Just test-drive one and you'll believe the hype. (Just don't ask for 25 000$ if you happen to sell yours one day:))