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Old 4th December 2013, 07:58   #1
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Default My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts

I Have had the pleasure of driving a vtec since 5 years. From the start, I wanted a nice handling, reliable car that I could use daily and take it to the track over a week end (time permitted). From 2008 till 2010, the car was basically stock. It had the usual simple mods of a exhaust and a HKS filter from Race Dynamics. I had the pleasure of sitting in few fast vtec’s at that time and had heard all the horror stories of owning a modded ride and reliability. This prevented me from going overboard with the mods with my car.

In 2011, the header developed a leak and I got in touch with Joel, the founder and owner of Race concepts to build a new exhaust system. We used to ride along back in the days (around 2005) before we turned to car guys. Joel was very busy guy those days and he had very little time between his races to take on a project. He had showcased his personal car on many instances and I was really impressed with his knowledge and his approach to things. He had also dynoed his car to show the performance gain that he had achieved. This made me approach him to help me with my car.

Mid-2011, after months of discussing, Joel agreed to build a multi stage exhaust. The fabrication work took two days. It was finally completed and I was satisfied with the end result. There was a significant bump in torque and top end power over the previous 4x1 exhaust system, and the car felt real quick to make me a happy man. Now, while I was in the UK, I had picked up few items for the car like the JDM D-series manifold, braided brake lines, front brake pads etc. Joel suggested me to install a standalone ECU in order to exploit the full potential of the intake. Lot of options was available, however I decided to pick up the RD0901 standalone ECU. Joel did the install and tuning at Race concepts. Now along with power, a 3 way adjustable coilover was also installed to improve the handling of the car and make it safe and fun package for the street. Also went in a close ratio final drive. We clocked a 7.7 secs to 100 with this package. Without touching the engine.

Few months passed and the car was a joy to drive. The fuel efficiency was not hit and i was getting 11-12 kmpl inside the city with mixed driving. Had few talks with Joel and he felt that the car needed the next level of mods. Joel decided that he will install the JDM D manifold, strip the head and do his magic. Before stripping the head a compression test was done and the gauge showed 185psi all cylinders. It was discussed that Joel would just bump the compression a bit, work his magic on the ports and the combustion chamber, check for clearances and fit everything up. Install and the headwork went smooth, The intake manifold fitted with the stock throttle body and a custom calculated intake system with a BMS filter installed. The ECU was tuned to handle the new mods and the limiter was set to 8100 RPM. Few other goodies were added to make the car visually pleasing.

Now, I had been reading up on various sites and consensus was that the Vtec y8 head is best left close to stock, it’s very difficult to gain any HP’s and only a capable tuner can squeeze few horses from this head. Well post Joel’s magic, the car had transformed. Power was everywhere. The car had bucket loads of low end, a punchy mid and a crazy top end power. Compression was only 195psi in Bangalore on all Cylinders. The car could potter around town with no issues and returned a decent average similar to stock yet again. We had the opportunity to time the car using a Gtec-pro and we were very happy with the result. On the initial tune, we managed a time of 7.31secs to a ton. With further refinement of the setup and with the car stripped of all the audio and stuff in the car, we got to a 15 sec street car.

Later we further decided to improve the performance. So the cylinder head was removed to perform a next level update. The head was taken to a new level by performing a ful stage 4 mod. With radical work and redone valve seat etc and with stiffer valve springs. We still retained the stock cam and pulley. The exhaust system was slightly updated to handle the new mods and the car further transformed. The top end power was really crazy and the power would not fade untill the limiter set at 8150rpm. Joel was capable of pushing the car to such high power levels with stock internals. Stock bottom half, stock valves, stock cam and stock cam pulley. The cylinder head had taken the magic to the whole new level. Would work like it had a cam.

Now the next stages of mods are underway. We have since then installed a Race Concepts custom close ratio dog gearbox (3,4,5) and a revised final drive to improve on the overall performance. We also added an adjustable timing wheel. With a revised tune and intake mod, the car has now reached a whole new level. Its real quick to a ton and the engine grunt after 100kph and shifts are to die for. The top end power has now started to get scary. We havent got to fully time the car, but its currently in the mid to high 14s to a quarter mile. All this with just stock internals and no fancy engine parts. It was Joel’s target to get the car this low with times with stock internals and its finally got here. Technically making this as fast as a stock Honda Integra. We still aiming for higher numbers with the stock internals. After which, we will go all out with the NA mod and go full build on the engine.

With the car lowered, the body skirt kit has taken a beating so i removed the old bumpers and have new oem bumpers in place. The car is shod with Forged Enkei RPF01 wheels shod with BFG 205s. We have also shod the car with rear disc kit and top front, top rear and lower race braces from Race Concepts.
The car has come a long way from what we started 2 years ago. What has changed is that the engine has remained the same. What started as a 10 sec car with a standard engine which was factory fitted 12 years ago, has never come-off and the block has cut more than 3 secs to 100kph, while the cylinder head constantly went through radical surgeries. The result has been outstanding and hard for anyone to ever believe that it still runs on OEM Honda parts in the engine. Only the drivetrain and everything outside the block has changed. We have never dynoed the car, but always took reference from Joel’s previous builds and benchmarked the times. The car has currently breached under 7 secs to 100 and love its driveability, economy and bullet proof reliability.
Attached Thumbnails
My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts-enkei.jpg  

My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts-group.jpg  

My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts-joels-my-car.jpg  

My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts-slammed.jpg  

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Old 4th December 2013, 14:58   #2
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Default re: My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts

Nice list of modifications. I especially like how you've kept it safe & reliable (basically, no turbo), exploiting the max you can from a naturally-aspirated engine. I remember Fieroid's (aka Joel) threads and there isn't a doubt that he's got sheer talent. The 0 - 100 in 7.47 seconds (link (V-Box update of my Honda City VTEC. 0-100 kph in 7.47 secs!!)) and sleeper threads (link (My Naturally Aspirated Honda City VTEC sleeper - An evolving story!)) particularly stand out.

I might be going the same route; want to turbo, but want reliability even more.

P.S. : Your car will probably shave 1/2 second off in the 0 - 100 with 185 / 195 tyres
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Old 4th December 2013, 19:35   #3
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Default re: My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Nice list of modifications. I especially like how you've kept it safe & reliable (basically, no turbo), exploiting the max you can from a naturally-aspirated engine. I remember Fieroid's (aka Joel) threads and there isn't a doubt that he's got sheer talent. The 0 - 100 in 7.47 seconds (link (V-Box update of my Honda City VTEC. 0-100 kph in 7.47 secs!!)) and sleeper threads (link (My Naturally Aspirated Honda City VTEC sleeper - An evolving story!)) particularly stand out.

I might be going the same route; want to turbo, but want reliability even more.

P.S. : Your car will probably shave 1/2 second off in the 0 - 100 with 185 / 195 tyres
Thanks GTO.

From the beginning i wanted the car to be reliable, did not want a very fast car but one which would excite me and at the same time be very reliable. Joels knowledge and his attention to detail has to be appreciated. It is because of this my car is very reliable.

regarding the 185/195 tyres, we need the manufacturers to give us some decent rubber so that we can exploit the true potential of these machines. with some good rubber we can easily cut down on the 0-100 timing and make the car that much more safer to drive
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Old 5th December 2013, 14:32   #4
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Hi nice to see fast NA car. Definitely Joel knows his stuff. His remap on my turbo city has given much better results. What pads are you running? It is hard to differentiate your car from his car. Happy revving. I guess he has solution to city's horrible brakes.
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Old 5th December 2013, 14:43   #5
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Default re: My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts

A nice weekend track car mod you have done there. Iam really interested in doing something on the same lines. even though mine is a non vtech 1.5, i believe it has a lot more power to unleash with some head job like yours. Can you please let me know what coil over suspension and brakes you are using, reference to cost would help. I have been contemplating installing slotted rotors for the honda city which come to about 25k. i would really be interested to hear about the improvements if you have done something similar on the city.
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Old 5th December 2013, 21:11   #6
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Default Re: My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts

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Originally Posted by baddy View Post
A nice weekend track car mod you have done there. Iam really interested in doing something on the same lines. even though mine is a non vtech 1.5, i believe it has a lot more power to unleash with some head job like yours. Can you please let me know what coil over suspension and brakes you are using, reference to cost would help. I have been contemplating installing slotted rotors for the honda city which come to about 25k. i would really be interested to hear about the improvements if you have done something similar on the city.
Thanks, get in touch with Joel and he can give you some options for your car. The coilover suspension is custom ordered from Joel and is a 3 way coil over. Its custom order as no one makes suspension for this car anymore. Get in touch with Joel and he can may be get a group buy going on. The more buyers, the more discount available

regarding brakes, i am more than satisfied with the stock brakes. Trust me, we don't need them fancy rotors and big brake kits, the OEM do just fine. Just run Nissin pads and you could upgrade to steel braided lines just to give you more bite. My car runs OEM brakes all around till date and i have no complaints.
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Old 6th December 2013, 09:12   #7
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Default Re: My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts

Quote:
Originally Posted by kutlee View Post
Hi nice to see fast NA car. Definitely Joel knows his stuff. His remap on my turbo city has given much better results. What pads are you running? It is hard to differentiate your car from his car. Happy revving. I guess he has solution to city's horrible brakes.
Errr! Just a question, wanted to know what made you feel that way?
You say that the city has horrible brakes! I for one feel that it is over assisted!!

Cheers
Shrey
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Old 6th December 2013, 09:52   #8
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Default Re: My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts

Shrey, it does not brake well and brake fade is quite prominent at high speeds. Even Joel complained about my brakes. I am doing some research. I guess my suspension is also wearing out.
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Old 6th December 2013, 09:59   #9
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Default Re: My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts

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Originally Posted by kutlee View Post
Shrey, it does not brake well and brake fade is quite prominent at high speeds. Even Joel complained about my brakes. I am doing some research. I guess my suspension is also wearing out.
Hmm, in that case, are your rotor's stock or have they been replaced? If yes then with which brand of rotors.

I have never experienced brake fad on my vtec, no matter how hard I have braked. Even on the track, never experienced brake fade.

Cheers
Shrey
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Old 6th December 2013, 10:56   #10
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All stock and stock nissin pads.
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Old 6th December 2013, 15:09   #11
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Congrats Joel and Karthik on the feat. Please keep us posted on the further mods/timing/dyno or anything you do on your car.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssjr0498 View Post
Hmm, in that case, are your rotor's stock or have they been replaced? If yes then with which brand of rotors.

I have never experienced brake fad on my vtec, no matter how hard I have braked. Even on the track, never experienced brake fade.

Cheers
Shrey
I had a OHC 1.5 exi and now own a OHC vtec. I second what Shrey has told. Neither have I experienced any brake fade. They are indeed over-assisted.

Last edited by aah78 : 6th December 2013 at 19:21. Reason: Posts merged.
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Old 6th December 2013, 19:25   #12
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Default Re: My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts

Awesome NA City! I have seen Turbo charged Citys struggling to reach a ton under 7.5 Secsonds. Were there any changes to the stock ECU or did you actually plug in a new ECU? Also, kindly put the pics of the header and the engine bay if possible. Let us drool over the D15B Engine!
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Old 6th December 2013, 19:41   #13
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Default Re: My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts

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Originally Posted by aveoman19 View Post
Awesome NA City! I have seen Turbo charged Citys struggling to reach a ton under 7.5 Secsonds. Were there any changes to the stock ECU or did you actually plug in a new ECU? Also, kindly put the pics of the header and the engine bay if possible. Let us drool over the D15B Engine!
Aveoman, As Karthik has mentioned, they have used standalone RD0901 (from Race Dynamics). I don't think our stock ECU's(obd2 in ohc vtec) can be re-chipped.

Last edited by cosmos : 6th December 2013 at 19:56.
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Old 6th December 2013, 23:48   #14
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Default Re: My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts

ok after a lot of digging around searching files on my old laptop i got one run that we did on 13/11/2011 .

Yes i know its 2 years old, will try digging some new runs up
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Old 7th December 2013, 01:16   #15
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Default Re: My Vtec (1st-gen City): Tuned by Race Concepts

Thanks for the words. The car indeed has come a long way for both Karthik and me in terms of developments.
I will also post a few logs of the 0-100 runs from my old files. All have been logged a long time ago, so need to search. The car will soon hit the dyno to record what we will max be pushing from this stock bottom half engine. I have a personal target to meet with this engine.
Coming to the brakes, well for a stock car the brakes are decent. But ever since I have started exploring the performance levels, I feel the brakes could be better. Back to back driving around the track with stock Nissin pads has left a bad taste in me. If you are really pushing the limits. Otherwise on street they are fine. A brake upgrade is never a worry, its always a safe bet. Investing in rotor and performance pads is always a good thing.
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