B20 Engine Specs

Written by marlin quintana
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B20 Engine Specs
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The Honda B20 engine is the largest of the company's B family of engines, which were mostly produced in the 1990s. It was used in the CR-V and the Japanese-market Orthia estate car. It is a naturally aspirated, double overhead cam (DOHC) design running on unleaded gasoline. Unlike some B-series engines, the B20 is not equipped with VTEC (Variable Valve Timing and Lift Electronic Control). However, a B20 block can be combined with a VTEC cylinder head to create a powerful 2.0-litre VTEC engine.

Description and Applications

The in-line, four-cylinder B20 displaced 1,973cc, or approximately 2.0 litres, with a bore diameter of 3.31 inches (84mm) and a stroke length of 3.50 inches (89mm). It appeared in two versions. The first, known as the B20B, debuted in 1996 and made its first U.S. appearance in the 1997 Honda CR-V. It ran with a compression ratio of 8.8:1. The '98 CR-V had the same engine.

For the '99 to '01 model years, the engine's compression ratio was raised to 9.6:1 and the cylinder head was modified, resulting in significantly more power. This version was known as the B20Z in the American market, while for the Japanese market, the engine continued to be called "B20B." Both versions had OBD II on-board diagnostics.


The first version of the B20 engine produced 126 horsepower at 5,400rpm and 133 foot-pounds of torque at 4,300rpm. The second version produced 146 horsepower at 6,400rpm and 133 foot-pounds of torque at 4,500rpm.

The B20's bigger size gave it a flatter torque curve than other members of the B family. This is one reason the engine enjoys so much attention from tuners---hobbyists who modify their cars to increase performance.

Induction, Valvetrain and Modifications

The B20 engine had double overhead cams but lacked VTEC valve timing. It was naturally aspirated and used multi-point fuel injection (MPFI), with four valves per cylinder.

The B-series engines are popular in the Honda tuner community, due in part to the fact that many engine parts are interchangeable. As the biggest of the B-series, the B20 makes a good starting point for those seeking a higher-output Honda engine, especially when its block is combined with a VTEC cylinder head such as that found on some B16 and B18 engines. This combination is often dubbed a "CRVTEC."

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