which civic would you choose? - Honda Civic Forum

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which civic would you choose?

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Old 06-22-2006
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which civic would you choose?

a '97 civic ex coupe five-speed with 130,000 miles and an unknown service history or a '94 civic ex coupe five-speed with 57,000 miles bought from a trusted and responsible friend?

so i currently drive the '97 civic. it's a great little car, and drives beautifully, but still i bought it from a used car dealership, and of course it has no service records, and in the back of my mind i always feel like it will turn out the engine was held on with duct tape or something equally ridiculous. i've owned it for about a year now, with no problems at all (well, the compressor on the a/c did just die), but when i look at it i find myself wondering "is the car leaning to the left too much?" "what was that noise in the idle just now?" etc.

now, i just found out a client that i've worked for for years is selling his '94 civic (again, ex coupe). he's been the only owner, and it's been garage kept. he doesn't drive it to work (he lives in chicago), so most of the miles are in-town weekend driving. he does take it out on the highway from time to time to give the car a chance to work a bit. he's very conscientous about cars and has all of the service records, and says that nothing major has gone wrong with it.

so, it has half the miles of the car i currently own, but is three years older. i know that any car can fall apart at any time, but which one would you all consider to be more reliable? which car would be better to drive? from pictures i've found, it seems the '94 has a similar body style to the '97. can anyone confirm that? i've found a few reviews that say the 92-95 civics lack punch in acceleration. i don't need to beat people off the line at stop lights, but i do zip through traffic a good bit (it's the training on the chicago streets), so i want a car that has decent acceleration. i'm quite happy with my current car in that respect.

oh, i should mention that price isn't an issue -- he's willing to sell it to me for $3500, which is $600 below blue book, so i might even make a few hundred dollars selling my current car.

any thoughts anyone has would be most appreciated. let me know if i forgot to include any relevant information.
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Old 06-22-2006
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The '94 sounds like a pretty good deal and you would probably be happier not having to worry about your car as much. A lower mileage car is going to be more reliable than a higher mileage one (especially with a known service history) regardless of age, imo.
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Old 06-22-2006
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the 94 anyday of the week
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Old 06-22-2006
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don't most civics (non SI, Type R) lack punch in acceration? Not trying to be mean, but torque monsters these are not. I would agree the '94 sounds like a good car and the miles are amazing.
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Old 06-22-2006
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Originally Posted by 2k1_sedan
don't most civics (non SI, Type R) lack punch in acceration? Not trying to be mean, but torque monsters these are not. I would agree the '94 sounds like a good car and the miles are amazing.
Well it is possible for a Single overhead cam to produce torque *not a lot* but still.. turbo it oh and the 94 is the better deal
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Old 06-22-2006
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thanks for the opinions so far (and keep 'em coming!). i'm glad to hear that the consensus seems to be to go with the '94. that was my gut reaction, but it's always so tough to tell if my gut is right when it comes to cars.

to 2k1_sedan: you're right, civics aren't going to leave you stuck to the back of the seat coming off a stop light. but they have a lot more zip than many other compact cars, i've found. i'm happy with what my '97 can do, so if no one thinks that the '94 will have significantly less power, i should be happy with that as well ...
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Old 06-22-2006
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I haven't driven a '94 so I can't speak from experience, but the engine specs from the 5th gens to the 6th gens didn't change much. I seem to recall the HP increase was minimal (5hp?). I would wonder if you would even notice the difference (hp wise).
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Old 06-22-2006
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dont they have the same motor? go with the 94. a d16 is a d16.
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Old 06-22-2006
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the big difference i see here is that the 94 wont have vtec and the 97 does. this will make a difference in acceleration. they are both SOHC motors and both carry a 1.6l displacement. but the 97 weighs about 230lbs more and only puts out 2hp more. i definately think the 94 is a better deal, youll get more a longer life becasue of the milage and i also like th 94 body style better
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Old 06-22-2006
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this board is great ... thanks for all of the replies so far. i'll definitely keep checking if anyone has anything to add. it's good to know that there are some expert opinions behind a decision i was having a tough time making.

now i need to work on putting something back into the forum to keep the forum karma in balance :-)
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Old 06-22-2006
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Depends on your taste and intensions. I think the EK hatch looks the best out of any civic. EG coupe is slightly smaller and lighter so if you want to swap I guess it might be a little quicker.

The EG has a lot less mileage so why not?
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Old 06-22-2006
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def the 94...it is a different body style but looks better then the 97 IMO and it has half the miles with about the same engine.
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Old 06-22-2006
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the 94 by far
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Old 06-23-2006
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I also would go with the 94.
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Old 06-23-2006
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you know... all of my friends make fun of me for driving a 2004 civic LX when they drive like used 97 civics with 100,000 miles plus. all i have to say to them is i paid for my civic in cash, and i earned that money the hard way. but yes, i would go with the 94, all civics are slow imo so u gotta find one thats at least reliable.
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Old 06-24-2006
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wow ... what an amazing response. i never expected so many people would write back, and am very happy to hear that _everyone_ recommended the '94. thanks for the time and advice to all. i'm really excited to get to driving this car now! i'm picking it up in chicago, driving to green bay for a wedding, then down to st. louis to visit friends, then back to chicago for lollapalooza, and then home to houston. so i'll definitely be putting the car through it's paces early on :-)

thanks again!
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