Remember the Acura RSX? It was a sporty little coupe/hatch that Honda offered over a decade ago, with an aggressive demeanor and wedgy looks. And in Type-S spec, it packed a bit of a punch. But not as much as this one.
Known as the Honda Collection Hall, the automaker’s in-house museum dug out this Integra Type R from its archives and revved it for our viewing pleasure in this three-and-a-half-minute drive down memory lane.
Now if you’re thinking that the Integra and RSX were two different models, you’re right. In America, they were. After two generations under the former nameplate, the Acura division replaced the two-door Integra with the RSX, and the four-door (a few years later) with the TSX. But back in Japan, the model known internally as the DC5 continued to carry the Honda Integra name. And it was offered in Type R spec.
With 217 horsepower (164 kW), the JDM Honda Integra Type R was more potent than the top US-spec Acura RSX Type-S (which had “just” 210 hp/160 kW). It also did without some of the North American model’s luxury features to save weight. It had a six-speed instead of five, along with Recaro buckets, a Momo steering wheel, four-piston front Brembo brakes, a limited slip differential, 17-inch alloys with sticky Bridgestone Potenza rubber, an upgraded suspension, and a smattering of other performance enhancements.
All that and more made the Integra Type R a piece of forbidden fruit that American enthusiasts could only lust after fro the opposite shores of the Pacific. And listening to that naturally aspirated VTEC engine rev all the way up to its redline, we can’t help but feel jealous all over again – even if the new Civic Type R we do get now would leave the RSX (in whatever form) eating its turbocharged dust.