EP3 Side

JDM EP3 Civic Type R

Not all EP3 Civic Type R are equal.

“Nonsense” I hear you say, “They all came outa the UK even the JDM ones, pipe down in the back”. Well sorry but I won’t pipe down, and yes your wrong.


Thankfully due to NZs geographic distance from the UK we were lucky not to get too many UK spec EP3 Type Rs, most you see here on our roads are the full fat JDM spec and yes you would do well to read on if you are considering one as the differences are substantial.

But first lets deviate slightly and talk about the DC5 vs EP3, the perceived weaknesses, and what you need to do to close the gap. Luckily we have the Hoonzee demo EP3 on hand to help illustrate things.


Equipped with Mugen coilovers the ride height is lowered slightly and firmed up



The DC5 vs Ep3 handling debate is one that will continue long after these cars cease to be on the road, but I would venture to say that the Electric Power steering EP3 vs the Hydraulic on the DC5 give the edge to the DC5 in terms of road feel, response, and driver feedback. A front tower strut-brace and set of aftermarket Mugen coilovers stiffen things up on this EP3 helping to alleviate this slight vagueness. Go cart like handling now achieved.


Mugen Twinloop catback

The JDM EP3s K20A comes in at 216BHP, it is 4 Lower than the DC5 due to the factory Honda header and exhaust design. A full Mugen cat-back system gets these elusive 4HP back into the stable. Power parity achieved.




Ok so now onto the JDM EP3 vs UK EP3 Differences.

EP3 InteriorInterior – Recaro’s and red Type R floor mats in the JDM, whereas in the UK you get Type S style seats with Type R embossed on them. A 180Km speedometer on the JDM is also notable, not a 240Km one.





APP Strut brace and is that a head balancer on this K20A

Engine – 160kw (216BHP) K20A in the JDM EP3 compared to 148kw (198BHP) K20A in the UK. A lighter flywheel on the face lifted JDM EP3 is also notable.





Drive Train – Limited Slip Differential and uprated Type R badged brakes on the JDM EP3. UK spec lacks an LSD and has slightly different brakes.


EP3 Back

Note: single Mugen exhaust tip showing instead of the normal twin tip.

Exterior – HID headlights, rear glass tints, and a little UK badge on the rear hatch are what you would notice as extras on the outside of a JDM EP3.





The EP3 is a fantastic, fun little rocket and with the right tweaks and upgrades you can get this already highly tuned and well received car to a razor sharp level without spending an awful lot. the key though is to get the JDM one.

This one has served me well, proved a couple of points and settled some scores, all while putting an ear to ear grin on my face, I recommend it.