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The newest trend in collector cars is spending unreasonable amounts of money on mundane car models that have very few miles. We’ve seen it with a ‘71 Blazer and even with some old American pickup trucks. Seeing these time capsules is really cool, admittedly, but as someone who grew up in these cloth-seat normies, seeing them fetch European sports car money makes me bristle. Be that as it may, a lucky soul just found a practically new 1996 Honda Civic SiR JDM barn find with only 16 miles on the odometer and plastic still on the seats. 

1996 Honda Civic SiR hatchback in black with only 16 miles on the odometer
1996 Honda Civic SiR hatchback | Vistec R Imports

Should we call this Honda Civic SiR a barn find? 

Jose Alvarez, the owner of JDM dealer Vistec R Imports, recently found and secured this unbelievable JDM Civic SiR. After the new car was purchased in 1996, it sat in a garage where it remained unchanged for over 25 years. Yeah, I’d call that barn find. 

This car is truly brand new. The Drive reports that the seat and carpet covers are still on the car from delivery. This thing is so unused that the headrests haven’t even been installed yet. There are only 16 miles on the car (26 Km), suggesting the only driving it could have done is test drives and maybe some moving around the parking lot. 

Is the 1996 Honda Civic SiR cool? 

Yes. Aside from the impossible condition, these cars have a serious following from anyone interested in street racing, JDM, import tuner cars, and, of course, Honda fans. 

According to The Drive, the 1996 Honda Civic SiR hatchback we see here is of the sixth generation, also known as the EK4. Honda built these from 1996 to 2000; it featured the popular B16A 1.6-liter engine. This little JDM hot hatch made a formidable 170 horsepower and 115 lb-ft of torque. 

Considering its spotless condition, it’s weird that this Civic SiR hatchback is missing its stereo. Although the place where it should be doesn’t seem tampered with, there is no explanation for why it’s gone. Given the context, it’s possible that the stereo was never installed or uninstalled upon purchase. 

How much is a 1996 Honda Civic SiR hatchback worth? 

Alvarez mentioned that his Instagram post about the car is blowing up. He has been flooded with requests to buy the car or asking how much he paid for it. While Alvarez hasn’t shared how much he paid for the Honda JDM barn find, he did mention that he turned down a $70,000 offer. 

When asked why he turned the offer down, he said it’s because he believes that his new acquisition must be the lowest-mileage example on Earth. He wants to keep the car for his own private collection. 

While we may be tempted to judge the original owner for never driving the car and maybe also Alvarez for not selling at the silly price, remember that in 2020 someone paid $50,000 for a 2000 Honda Civic Si Coupe. This car was in excellent condition, with only 5,600 miles on the clock.

With that in mind, turning down the $70,000 offer starts to change from silly to smart. As we continue to navigate the weird post-covid world, we have to rearrange how we see the values of certain things, at least temporarily. The ongoing chip shortage, housing shortage, formula shortage, and scores of other examples you want to choose, maybe these nostalgic relics have a new and more complex value? Maybe we need these unspoiled artifacts from simpler times? 


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