The CX has the exact same gear ratios as the VX and yet it has a fairly low tech, 2-valves per cylinder ICE. My CX has the DX ICE, which has less low end torque than the stock CX ICE. So the availablility in the VX of an ICE with enhanced low-end torque resulting from the use of variable-valve timing isn't a good enough excuse for the transmission's gear ratios used in the VX. These gear ratios could be used with any car that wasn't going to used to tow heavy loads.
You can find D15Z1's (the VX engine) on ebay for $300-500 and another 250 for shipping. They come from Japan and usually have less than 40k miles. But I'm not too worried about that now. Mine only has 144k miles. I put 275k on my 85 HF and it was still going strong.
In OZ we used to get a lot of these low milage engines form Japan , and most were crap.
They get abused , no services , excessive idling , and thrashed fom cold.
I have seen inside these 40k engines and they look like 100k worth of wear.
The VX might be the king for FE in cheap cars , but what happens when you need an engine rebuild.
I can do my metro engine completely reconditioned for about $1000 , how much for the Honda. ??
You will probably spend a grand doing the head and cams only.
As Krousdb pointed out, you can get a d15z1 from japan for cheap. YOu can get them for $350 from an importer, plus shipping. If you happen to live in Southern California you can get the engine delieved for free.
$350 for a fresh engine with less than 60k miles on it is much better than a rebuild. The rebuild kits for those engines usually cost over $400.