Friday, June 20, 2014

5k: Pre-Purchase Remorse: 1998 Integra GS-R sedan

The Acura Integra GS-R is the best car that you can't really enjoy. Even with 1990s Honda engineering (multilink suspension, VTEC inline-four revving to 8,200 rpm, one of the best shift feels this side of a 911) crammed into one compact sedan, it's a struggle to come up with what exactly you're supposed to do with it. Find this 1998 Acura Integra GS-R sedan for $4,500 in Salem, OR via Craigslist.

For a late-model Japanese four-cylinder sedan, it's not a wise financial purchase. High insurance costs (although a bit cheaper to insure than the hatch) are due to high probability of theft because of how easily broken into it is and Honda's parts interchangeability guarantees a market for inexpensive, superior GS-R parts with no questions asked. Plus, the mandatory use of premium gas for the B18 engine that only returns 25 combined miles per gallon means it isn't a gas saver. As it sits, it's not capable enough to be a weekend or track car, and you won't want to employ the enormous aftermarket because you finally found a stock one.

I'm not done. Look at the interior. You may adore light tan leather, but if you're shopping for a sedan, you probably have passengers who don't share your anal-retentive protective qualities. Invite young humans or careless coworkers inside and your precious leather seats become a no-longer-blank canvas.

And yet, the Integra allure remains. How many other 2,700-pound sedans rev to 8,200 rpm combined with sharp handling and legendary reliability? For the Fast and Furious family, this four-door is ideal - on paper. In the real world, it's a conundrum. At least maintenance costs won't let you down. Look at that long list of replacement parts. The buyer should have years of trouble-free ownership of this Teggy... if they figure out what to do with it.

See a more confusing sport sedan in a better color? Email us at

PhiLOL still drives a slow car and is evidently stuck on Japanese sedans lately, presumably due to unresolved childhood trauma involving sushi and a lot of doors. So... many... doors...


  1. Whoa there ... Portland isn't in Washington and this car is actually in Salem. But that's nitpicking really.

    By the way, an angry mob of skinny Asian teenagers should be at your door shortly.

  2. There's nothing wrong with a little lowering, and a bigger rear swaybar, then just enjoy it as a daily driver

  3. The poster is overthinking this. Examples this well-kept come up rarely, almost never. Buy it, enjoy it, ask questions later.


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