ALH in a Civic

TX Smoke

Member
Joined
May 4, 2017
Location
Kingsland TX
TDI
2003 Beetle
Ive seen it proposed, but I can’t find any proof that its been done. :D

I have an ALH Beetle that I love, but the plastic is cheap and its falling apart like a dodge interior, wife says no to having a parts Beetle.

My son blew up the worst VTEC motor honda ever made in his 2 door Civic and I kept it with the intention of doing a K swap on it and selling off the bug to pay for it. For those not familiar, honda 4 cylinder motors are somewhat interchangeable, you just have to match up the correct motor with the correct gearbox then get the appropriate axels. The motors sit differently depending on what car it came out of.

So I’m thinking I might already own all the parts to do this, just need to make some motor mounts. It would also be nice to have so much room under the hood when I needed to work on the TDI.
 
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Mozambiquer

Vendor , w/Business number
Joined
Mar 21, 2015
Location
Versailles Missouri
TDI
1998 VW Jetta TDI. 1982 VW Rabbit pickup, 2001 VW Jetta TDI, 2005 VW Passat wagon TDI X3, 2001 VW golf TDI, 1980 VW rabbit pickup,
Do it! Make a build thread too!

Sent from my S60 using Tapatalk
 

G60ING

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Aug 5, 2001
Location
MD
TDI
No TDIs Currently, I have an R36 Corrado. I've had an ALH Corrado swap, AHU Corrado swap and 2003 TDI Jetta
It’s a little more than just building mounts. All depends on how much Time you have to modify and fit everything.

Let’s list some of the things you will need to modify/fit:

Exhaust/Downpipe
Intercooler/pipes
Coolant lines
Ac lines
Ps lines
Shift cables and or shift box
Axles
Wiring harness
Instrument cluster
Immobilizer on the ecu
Fuel tank opening and fuel pressure knock down fpr
Go pedal bracket
Clutch line


That’s the short list off the top of my head, so it’s probably only 30% of the total list.
 

RamblingswithRyan

Active member
Joined
Apr 29, 2020
Location
Ohio
TDI
Future Ranger TDI
It’s a little more than just building mounts. All depends on how much Time you have to modify and fit everything.

Let’s list some of the things you will need to modify/fit:

Exhaust/Downpipe
Intercooler/pipes
Coolant lines
Ac lines
Ps lines
Shift cables and or shift box
Axles
Wiring harness
Instrument cluster
Immobilizer on the ecu
Fuel tank opening and fuel pressure knock down fpr
Go pedal bracket
Clutch line


That’s the short list off the top of my head, so it’s probably only 30% of the total list.
TX smoke: I would also add that you’ll have to modify the fuel pickup. I.e. removing the in-tank pump. Once you remove the stock Civic fuel pump, you’ll have to decide whether you want to run a lift pump. If you don’t have a return fuel line in the Civic, you’ll need one for the diesel engine.
I definitely encourage you to study as much as you can what you’ll need to make it work. Don’t get discouraged. I also would love to see a thread on the swap if you decide to do it.
 

2many diesels

Veteran Member
Joined
Mar 20, 2011
Location
Nor Cal
TDI
rabbit pickup 1z swap Audi A4 Quattro ALH. 02 Beetle TDI. 99 Golf TDI. 03 Wagon TDI. 914 Porsche ALH t
Why? It will be a lot of work to end up with something that is well, un-remarkable. Buy a golf. It all bolts together.
 

oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
outside St Louis, MO
TDI
There are just too many to list....
I feel like the last Civic that was really worth a darn was the 2000. And to take its little all aluminum hair dryer engine out and drop a chunky lump of VAG cast iron in it almost seems like it would upset the whole balance of the car, not to mention the torque would twist its little control arms and cause some really strange driving dynamics.

I love the old(er) Hondas, especially the through - 2000 Civics (before the Great Cheapening that happened at Honda). But it seems like far too much work with no real gain. Part of the fun of those little tin cans was running that 1.5L or 1.6L chainsaw engine out to its redline and enjoying the super low center of gravity and its very well engineered double wishbone suspension.

And if you wanted to go faster, and didn't already start with a DOHC Si model, raiding the Integra or first gen CRV parts bin for a 1.8L or 2.0L DOHC engine and some of the many performance mods available would certainly liven them up.
 
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d24tdi

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2019
Location
MT
TDI
96 B4V
Don't forget also that with a Honda, everything under the hood is backwards compared to a VW. Engine spins backwards, exhaust is towards front of car and intake is towards back, engine is on passenger side and trans on driver's side rather than vice versa, so everything will be in the wrong place to put it together -- fuel lines, shifter cables, etc, etc. Axle setup will be all wrong too, you won't have much of a starting point to work with to get new ones built. Not that you couldn't redo all of it, with enough work. But as others said above, the question then becomes, why?

I'm a big fan of diesel swaps in general and TDI swaps in particular for sure, and think they are often a good (or at least interesting) idea in all kinds of different vehicles. But the ones I don't get are the swaps into small FWD cars that are very similar in concept to the VW models the engines already were available in from factory. Saturns, Insights, Civics, etc. Maybe you save a few pounds and gain a couple MPG, but the car is conceptually very similar to just an old Jetta or Golf, does pretty much the same things in the same way -- but you still have to do all the work of swapping it. Makes much more sense to me when folks use them in an application where the result is a vehicle very unlike anything you could otherwise just go out and buy -- like an AWD wagon, SUV, pickup, minivan, etc. The problem with the swaps into small FWD cars is that, for a vehicle of that type, you're better off just buying a stock A-platform TDI and making it as interesting as you can.

If your goal is specifically to have something that puts the TDI engine to use and you want it to be lighter/simpler than the Bug, and still a car (not a small pickup or 4x4 or other rigs many people use these engines for) -- then you might also consider a swap into an old Mk2 Golf or Jetta. Those are tough and simple little cars with less plastic inside to break than an Mk4/Bug, and the engine would bolt in for the most part, and they are almost half a ton lighter than a Mk4 NB and have pretty nice driving characteristics even against modern vehicles, though in terms of NVH they are from a different era.

I understand the big motivation is really that you already have both the car and the engine in the case of the Honda, but don't be too tempted by that. You'd save a lot of time and money in the end offloading the Honda and getting something easier and/or more worth the effort to do your swap in.
 
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oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
outside St Louis, MO
TDI
There are just too many to list....
He didn't specify a year, but he 2006+ Civics have the engine/trans orientation like everyone else now. As are all the newer cars, and all the V6 models. Even the early ones. V6 Accords, engine was facing one way, the 4 cyl were the other way, LOL.
 

d24tdi

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2019
Location
MT
TDI
96 B4V
He didn't specify a year, but he 2006+ Civics have the engine/trans orientation like everyone else now. As are all the newer cars, and all the V6 models. Even the early ones. V6 Accords, engine was facing one way, the 4 cyl were the other way, LOL.
Didn't know that, thanks. Guess the only ones I have ever been under the hood of are the old style, and it has been a while anyway.
 

oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
outside St Louis, MO
TDI
There are just too many to list....
The last ones were the 2005 Civic. The Accords all switched when the belt driven 4 cyl models were replaced with the chain driven versions in 2003.

The Fits are all like everyone else from the get go, and like I said all the V6 models always were, so that is all the Pilots, Ridgelines, Odyssey 1999+, etc.

Mitsubishi was the other one that had them going the other way for a long time, but eventually changed. And they too had some models that could be had either way depending on which (whose) engine. And of course early Hyundai was lock-step with Mitsubishi too.
 

TX Smoke

Member
Joined
May 4, 2017
Location
Kingsland TX
TDI
2003 Beetle
Sorry I didn’t get back to everyone about this, the car is an 03 2 door civic, the sexy 2 door with a trunk that the K Swap was invented for. Project is on the back burner, I‘ve got a few other things before I can get to that one. I’m also looking at a TT, much easier job since they both speak German.
 
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