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Before the New Civic Arrives, a Tribute to the Civics of Old

Paying homage to the definitive grassroots racer.

The last Honda Civic was a little meh, an economy car with a controversial interior, uninspiring looks, and decidedly subpar performance. The next one looks promising, though, thanks in no small part to Honda Exterior Lead Designer Jarad Hall. We’ll be driving it here shortly, and everybody is excited. We’re ready for the Civic to be great again. Because, back in the Nineties, Honda’s entry-level compact was king.

With a scant curb weight and simple four-cylinder engine, the Civic was the perfect platform for tuning. A bag of tools, a few hundred dollars and some patience went a long way. This video from Elvijs Murnieks’ pays homage to the Civic, specifically the grassroots racing culture that flourished on Honda’s home turf: Japan.

Give it a watch. You’ll be tempted to hop on Craigslist, buy a $500 Civic project and get to wrenching. Bottom line: An old economy hatchback is the perfect way to get into cars. Hopefully the new Civic can pick that torch back up.