1998 Honda Civic SiR vs Geely Coolray drag race: You won't see this everyday

Updated Feb 18, 2021 | Same topic: Automotive Industry Updates

How would a 90s automotive legend fare against a modern car?

The Honda Civic SiR was, and still is, one of the most sought-after sedans that came out from the 1990s. It’s sporty but practical, and with a little bit of cajoling (and/or mods) from the driver, it is a very potent track weapon.

But what if the Civic SiR raced against a modern car? Well to find the answer to that, celebrity car enthusiast Ramon Bautista organized a drag race in-between the aforementioned 1990s legend against the modern Geely Coolray. Yes, this is certainly an unusual match-up. 

A picture of the Geely Coolray and Honda Civic SiR on the starting line

The Geely Coolray and Honda Civic SiR lining up for battle [Photo: Ramon Bautista]

Mind you, this race was mostly for fun, but then again, it provided us a glimpse as to how a modern car like the Coolray performs if driven hard. And of course, we also got to see how a well-maintained example of a Civic SiR flexes its muscles.  

Let’s watch the video. Skip to the 28:00-minute mark if you just want to see the race.  

1998 Honda Civic SiR vs Geely Coolray Drag Race Battle

To sum it up, the quarter-mile duel between the Honda Civic SiR and the Geely Coolray was a four-round bout. Two of the first were off-the-line starts, and the latter two were rolling starts.

On the first-ever race, the Civic SiR jumped the gun a little bit and thus won. Or maybe, the Coolray’s driver just hesitated. It was the first round after all.

On the second round, the Honda managed to beat the Chinese-made crossover by using an age-old drag race tactic, which is revving high to keep its engine in the optimal power-band, then dumping the clutch.

We can’t really tell for sure if the driver of the Civic SiR really did that, but we’re guessing that he did. As for the Coolray, it couldn’t do that since it has an automatic tranny.

>>> Related: Honda Civic SiR: Why is it still popular?

A picture from the inside of the Coolray as it races the Civic SiR

The Geely Coolray managing to pass the Civic SiR on the rolling start drag race

>>> Related: Even in Malaysia, Geely Coolray’s counterpart is selling like hotcakes

On both the rolling start rounds, the Geely Coolray managed to win as it was given the opportunity to stretch its legs a bit earlier. Of note, it can make 177 horsepower and 255 Nm of torque at the maximum.

That’s more than the Civic SiR’s 160 horsepower and 150 Nm of torque. And yes, having more torque is particularly advantageous in a drag race.

As Ramon Bautista said in the video, what’s important at the end of the day was that both the drivers had fun. If you want to read more fun, informative, as well as helpful car-focused articles, keep it here on Philkotse.com

Know more about Honda Civic 2021

Honda Civic

Currently, the Honda Civic compact sedan is now in its 10th generation. It was first introduced back in April 2016, and currently it has three variants. Under the hood, the 10th-gen Civic for the Philippine market has two engine options. The Civic RS uses a 1.5-liter turbocharge inline-4 that can make up to 171 horsepower and 220 Nm of torque. The second engine option is a naturally-aspirated 1.8-liter inline-4 that can produce a maximum of 139 horsepower and 174 Nm of torque. All variants use a continuously variable transmission, which sends all power to the front wheels.

From ₱1,115,000

Cesar G.B. Miguel

Cesar G.B. Miguel


Cesar is a graduate of AB English with previous experience working as a freelance writer for varied internet publications in-between his former stints in the Pharmaceutical Industry, and later as a First Aid Provider and Training Staff at the Iligan City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office.

Since childhood, Cesar has been keenly interested in cars. He has learned the ins and outs of these marvelous vehicles and is a competent amateur mechanic who is keen on sharing his knowledge.

Cesar is perceptive of car culture in general – not only in the Philippines but in global regard, as well. His knowledge ranges from the prevalent stories and trends among car enthusiasts around the world, to closely following the latest local and international developments in the automotive industry.

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