I'm in New Zealand and have a 1985 Honda City E (ER1 engine) that has only
done 65,000 kms. The body is structurally excellent (although it could do
with a lick o' paint) and the engine seems fine. When I got it it'd been
standing in a barn for 6 years, the owner is was a woman in her 80's. Her
grandkids had started it and run it into a post on the farm. Cracked bumper
and holed rad. They managed to blow the headgasket before putting it back in
She was quite attached to her car, (literally one old lady owner) and asked
my brother, a tractor mechanic, if he knew of someone who'd "look after it".
I fit the bill perfectly. I'm an invalid on welfare and, in recent years,
had been reduced to buying ~$700 cars, getting rust repairs etc. as needed
every six months for roadworthiness tests until they became not worth
The body appears to have no rust at all, a marvel in a car this old. The
previous owner gave me the car free as I'd said I'd look after it. I maxed
my (admittedly low limit) credit card on fixing it up. I have the skills to
do a lot of engine work myself but have major back problems. My brother
fitted a new head gasket, had the head re-surfaced and crack-tested (on my
dime of course).
I've spent everything I thought warranted on this car. New cam belt, two
consecutive oil/filter changes (Valvoline XLD) 500k apart, transmission oil
change (Castrol VMX), Air filter change, new thermostat, second-hand
radiator (my budget doesn't stretch to re-coring), new battery, front disc
skim and new pads, wheel alignment, all new tyres, new spark plugs (Bosch
super fours). About a grand all up, the max on my credit card. My friends
think I'm crazy to spend that much on a 26 y/o car that isn't even a classic
but I'm confident that it'll last me a while and not contribute *too*
to global warming as it's so economical. (Important to me, despite, or
perhaps because of, having had muscle cars in my younger days)
It goes well, I get 45mpg out of it with mixed highway and city driving. If
I could afford it this car is worthy of a nice paintjob and re-upholstery
IMO. However, sadly 'cosmetic' expenditure is beyond my budget. There is a
bit of noise, especially under low-speed braking, coming from the front. At
first I suspected brakes bit it seem that it could be a bearing where the
driveshaft goes into the diff housing. I'm saving to get that looked at now.
I guess that the point of my post is I'd like to learn more about my car as
I think I'll have it for a few years yet. However, www searches aren't
helping me find a club or organisation. I'm even having trouble finding
facts about the early City's. Ultimately I'd like to fit the consle/dash,
maybe even suspension and brakes out of a conterporary City Turbo to my car.
My car is the bare-bones version, not even a clock, although the hole for it
and the wiring are there. However, I'd like to find out about compatibility
etc. before I go searching for a wrecked turbo or parts from one.
Here is a (very) small pic of the type of car I'm talking about. I'd love to
have the money (and luck) to find a City Turbo but for now am very happt
with my normally-aspirated model.
Thanks for reading (if you did :-) ). Any pointers to groups, sites, info
etc, much appreciated.
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