June 2017. My birthday was coming up and funnily enough my insurance renewal the day after. I felt like treating myself. I’d had my then lightly modded mk7 Fiesta ST, a very good car which I did gel with over the year I owned it but not as much as I would’ve liked. I don’t blame the car, it didn’t really lack in any area I guess I’m just not a Ford sort of guy.
I still to this day miss the car that preceded it, my Honda Civic Type R EP3 in Cosmic Grey. That was the car I spent the most money on, loved the most and took to all the shows. I only parted with it for the Fiesta as my work commute lengthened, the setup I was running on it simply didn’t work in stop start traffic, I had nowhere to store it and I couldn’t afford a daily at the time.
By the end of March last year I’d already decided the Fiesta was going. The white paintwork I found frustrating to keep clean, the same with the black Team Dynamics wheels and I just fell out of love with it really towards the end of winter. I swore to my girlfriend I’d never own another white car with black wheels and if I did, she’d have the permission to slap me. So naturally, the car that replaced it was white, with black wheels. I still wince thinking about that slap.
I know they get a lot of stick with all the lawnmower comments and such but I just like Honda’s. They’re pretty bulletproof, relatively cheap to maintain and for the most part guarantee a lot of fun. I love having to work the car to get the most from it, it’s what appealed to me so much about my Civic I think. I love German cars, the image, the quality and there’s always awesome shows for them throughout the show season. Plus as I work for a German marque, I’m sure I’ll own one at some point. Probably next. But for now I hadn’t quite scratched that vtec itch I started in the EP3.
I try to think back to when I decided I wanted to own a DC5, I can’t remember exactly but it must of been at least 5 or 6 years back when I first started going to shows and saw one. You don’t tend to see them anywhere else as they were never sold on our shores. For that reason to me it was such an event seeing them as back then I didn’t attend many shows or events. It’s hard to explain but, I think they just look cool. In my opinion they’ve got that timeless look and can be appreciated from every angle. I’ve spoken to many people about them and they seem to be one of the few cars that everyone likes. No matter what they’re into or what they drive. I knew way back then I had to own one some day. One of those realistic dream cars that you might actually get to purchase.
Fast forward back to June 2017. Having a bit of money to play with and looking at the market, I checked in on the prices of DC5’s and what was about. I remember seeing the advert for my Integra the first time and brushing it off. Sure it had a good spec, a decent mileage and a few nice choice modifications. But the mileage was still in KM’s, the speedo was still limited and it sat on black wheels. I just didn’t think it was worth the trip to see if I wasn’t entirely sure by the advert so I left it. Looking through the few DC5’s that were for sale at the time, there didn’t seem much hope at all. However Dan, a friend of mine, was also keeping his eye out and proposed we went and looked at the very same DC5 I’d decided to ignore about a week earlier. With nothing else in the market I wanted to look at and a day off to spend – I agreed.
Turning up to see the car I immediately shut my mouth. All the history was there, the spec was better in person and the condition was fantastic. Especially when taking into consideration it was then a 16 year old car. Sure the black wheels did put me off slightly but they could be changed easily enough. A deposit was left and a week later I was driving my very own Honda Integra Type R DC5 back home. When you’ve wanted a car for years and finally manage to buy one, the feeling is great. I had a smile on my face all the way back. A week later and the Fiesta had gone. Sold to a reputable dealership who then sold it to a Ford enthusiast in Scotland so it’s nice to know it’s in good hands. The DC5 was on daily duty from then on.
It was a good few months driving the Teg to work and back every day. I’ve got a reasonably long commute but it was short enough to still enjoy the car. However it wasn’t all roses. During those few months the car picked up a few stone chips, Honda paint is notoriously thin. It was reversed into a number of times and I had a few other close calls from people day to day who simply can’t drive. It was around November time I decided to clear out the garage which was full of junk and store the DC5 away while I bought my BMW e92 320d to take over from daily duties.
In the time I’ve owned it there’s not been as much modifications as I’d like mainly due to funds. Some small modifications some big. The OEM gearknob is gone in favour of a 6two1 weighted item, I don’t care what anyone says it makes the world of difference when shifting. I swapped the OEM suspension out with some help for a set of Bilstein B14 coilovers purchased yet again from Hendy Performance. No bad words so far but I’m yet to test them on the track. I’m not worried about them at all mind. The fake black Rota wheels were swapped for some OEM items, they look so good I’m not surprised some people choose to never change them. I did however purchase some Rays SE37k’s from Northampton way, not the greatest finish being in chrome and silver but that was to be changed. Other mods have remained on the car, a J’s Racing 60R backbox is fitted. A PasswordJDM gurney flap adorns the rear spoiler. My favourite would be the OEM steering wheel retried in alcantara – just a much nicer feel.
After 3 or 4 months of owning them, I finally booked my Rays wheels in for a colour change. In an attempt at matching a original Volk bronze, they came out very close. The Wheel Specialist Fareham did a fantastic job and were great to deal with. Anyone will tell you it’s impossible to match it perfectly as the original finish is anodised, but it’s about as good as it gets. Naturally I wanted to fit them as soon as possible and I did, but on the drive out for photos I realised the wheels foul the arches and subsequently they’ll definitely need rolling.
That just about brings us to today. I’m attempting to bring the car to as many shows as possible this season where it wasn’t around last year. But there are some issues to sort first. Like I previously mentioned the rear arches definitely need rolling and any damage repaired. The front bumper will be getting resprayed and a few bits smoothed from where the OEM numberplate plinth sat and some harsher stone chips occurred. Also some other minor niggles. But the parts and to do list is long. I’ll try and update this as much as I can when and if anything is changed with the car. Long story short. More power, more noise, better handling, more shows and more track days.