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Project CTR: Complete!

Having Project CTR on the cover can only mean one thing; our time with the lovely race bred Honda is coming to an end. After just over a year with Project CTR, we can honestly say that this will be one of our most memorable projects ever. She may have a punishing ride, but her sweet handling characteristics and even sweeter K20A engine make the spine-crushing ride all worthwhile.

Although the mods we’ve fitted to Project CTR are in no way extreme or groundbreaking, what we’ve tried to do is merely optimize what Honda had spent years of R&D on. By fitting an aftermarket intake and exhaust, along with a Hondata FlashPro, we freed up quite a few more horsepower as well as giving the Civic the loud and clear voice every VTEC-equipped Honda deserves.

Before we could get our grubby paws on Project CTR however, we had to hand her over to N1 Racing for a baseline dyno run, where she made 189.43PS and 20.35kg/m of torque. After the dyno, we passed her over to Motorsport Playground to get her some stickers and vinyls. Since Project CTR’s main project partner would be Falken, we decided to give her a design motif which mimics the Falken’s race cars, such as Vaughn Gittin Jr.’s drift prepped Ford Mustang and the N1-sped Nissan Skyline GT-R.

Next came the first modification, a set of wheels from SSW. We chose a set of SSW S093 wheels, finished in black with a red stripe along the rim. The S093 is a light, strong and rigid wheel and features a twin 5 spoke design and cast aluminium construction. Measuring 18 x 7.5 inches with a +42 offset, the wheels sit a little further out than the stock CTR wheels and fill up the arches much more nicely.

It was also right around this time that we would be giving Project CTR her first engine and gearbox oil change with 10W-30 Torco SR-1 engine oil and 75W-90 Torco SGO gearbox oil. The Torco lubricants made a real difference in the way Project CTR drove and felt. The engine felt a lot smoother and more willing to rev and the gearstick felt so much smoother and better to shift around. On top of that, we put her on the dyno and Project CTR made an extra 2.34PS and 1.2kg/m of torque!

With the new wheels in, the current set of tyres was beginning to wear thin, so we turned to Falken for a set of replacements. We went for the best Falken had to offer, the popular RT-615. Preferred by trackday junkies around the world thanks to its attractive asymmetric tread pattern and excellent wear and grip characteristics, the RT-615 offered lots of grip in both the dry and the wet and did nothing to dull the Civic’s steering response and delicate handling balance.

Up next on the mods list was a brake disc and brake pad upgrade from Dixcel, supplied to us by UHP Racing. We went with Dixcel R01 brake pads and Dixcel HS Series slotted discs and fitted them on all four corners. The Dixcel R01 brake pads have temperature range of 200ºC and 900ºC and a high density brake compound made from sintered alloy. Dixcel’s HS series slotted discs are heat treated using their own special methods for increased durability and strength and normally come with 6 slots, with the option of 12 slots. Despite the R01 pads’s working temperature being rated at 200ºC to 900ºC, the brakes worked flawlessly and didn’t need warming up. The pads and discs offered superb braking performance and bite much harder than the standard discs and pads. The only drawback was a slight, racecar-like squeaking sound whenever the brakes were applied.

With the brakes and tyres sorted, we turned to Pentagon, distributor of J’s Racing products for a new suspension kit. Chris Tan of Pentagon recommended we fit J’s Racing’s latest release, a non-adjustable spring and damper kit which lowers the car by 15mm in the front and 20mm at the rear. The suspension kit, made by Showa, not only gave Project CTR better handling, but also improved ride quality. Chris also recommended we fit a pair of J’s Racing adjustable camber arms and custom camber nuts in the front and have the car’s camber setting adjusted according to J’s Racing’s recommendations. This resulted in Project CTR being more responsive to steering inputs and having a more neutral handling balance.

After the suspension had been sorted out, Chris also recommended we swap out our stock rubber brake hoses for a set of Goodridge steel braided ones to get the most out of our Dixcel brake upgrades. With the Goodridge hoses fitted, brake pedal feel was substantially improved. It was also easier to lock the wheels under hard braking, but we soon got used to it and it shows that the brake hoses were doing their job. Since the hoses were being replaced, we also filled Project CTR up with fresh EBC BF307+ brake fluid and at the same time, we also dressed up the engine bay a little with a J’s Racing oil filler cap and a J’s Racing radiator cap, also from Pentagon.

With handling, brakes and tyres sorted out, we could finally get to making more power with Project CTR. First on the list of power enhancing mods was a J’s Racing titanium exhaust system and decat pipe. We went for the 70mm ‘race’ system, which does liberate more power than the 60mm system but at the cost of more noise. We loved the noise the exhaust system made however, as the exhaust emits a deep bassy growl at idle with a loud 4-cylinder scream at higher revs. The icing on the cake is that the exhaust system liberated an extra 5.54PS!

In our quest for more power, we sourced a set of Okada Projects performance ignition coils. Having tried them before on Project Scooby Version 8, we knew that their ignition coils do perform as claimed. The Okada Projects performance ignition coils increase engine power by emitting a much stronger spark, ensuring a more complete burn in the cylinders. Much to our delight, the Okada Projects coils gave Project CTR another 5.68PS to play with!

With the power figure now sitting pretty at 200.65PS, we wanted more, and we hadn’t even touched the intake yet. Chris from Pentagon came to the rescue once again with a J’s Racing carbon fibre intake kit, which comes with the carbon fibre air box, a free flowing cone air filter and a cold air intake hose. We particularly like the design of this intake kit as it comes with an airbox which shields the intake from hot air and ambient heat in the engine bay. We also optimized things with Hondata’s new FlashPro. Supplied to us and tuned by N1 Racing, Project CTR now made a more wholesome 209.98PS.

But we weren’t done just yet, we still had a J’s Racing header to try out. The J’s Racing header for the FD2-R is made of stainless steel and is designed for improved engine response rather than outright power gains. With the header installed, we also thought it’d be a good idea to take Project CTR back to N1 Racing for another tune up with the Hondata FlashPro. We did feel a small difference in throttle and engine response and Project CTR did manage to muster another 4.76PS to add to her arsenal of ponies.

As our time with Project CTR began to grow, so did the dust, dirt and grime in Project CTR’s interior. We needed to clean it up and keep it clean, so we sent her to VPS for VPS’ Fabric and Carpet Protection and VPS Security Film. The Fabric & Carpet Protection strengthens the textile integrity of each fibre, repelling water, oil-based fluids and soiling agents, ensuring that your interior remains stain free and VPS’ Security Film offers superb solar protection and strengthens the windows, preventing break-ins.

Last, but certainly not least, is the Alpine sound system provided by Wo Kee Hong. The standard sound system could barely cope with the loud exhaust and we needed an upgrade if we were to continue listening to our favourite tunes. Since Project CTR was all about handling and performance, we wanted to keep things simple to keep the extra weight off.

Wo Kee Hong recommended we go with a simple head unit and speaker upgrade and a compact active subwoofer for bass. Alpine’s IVA-W502E head unit replaced the original CDA-9887 head unit, while the front speakers were replaced with Alpine’s SPR-17S component speakers, powered by a compact Alpine PDX F4 amplifier. Finally, measuring in at a compact 8 inches in diameter, an Alpine SWE-1000 active subwoofer provided the much needed extra bass.

With this closing paragraph, comes the end of Project Falken Hypertune CTR. She may have been loud, she may have been a little obnoxious, but by God, we love Project CTR in all her flashy stickers and loud exhaust glory. We only hope that we’ll be able to build another project as raw and raucous as her soon.

Motorsport Playground custom stickers
Motorsport Playground – 017-366 6666 (Remus)

SSW S093
(Black with red lip)
Falken RT-615 tyres
Stamford Tyres (M) Sdn Bhd
03 5569 3090

Torco SR-1 Engine Oil 10W-30
Torco SGO Gearbox Oil 75W-90
Torco RCL
Cosmic Elite – 603-6275 3188 or 012-3034 378
UHP Racing – 016-380 2801

Dixcel R01 brake pads
Dixcel HS brake discs
UHP Racing – 016-380 2801

J’s Racing Suspension Kit by Showa
J’s Racing Spherical Rear Camber Kit
Custom Front Camber Kit
Installation with camber and custom toe setting
Goodridge steel braided hoses
EBC BF 307+ DOT 4 brake fluid
J’s Racing 1.3 bar radiator cap
J’s Racing oil filler cap
Pentagon Enterprise – 03-9223 3119

VPS Security Film
VPS Fabric & Carpet Protection System
VPS Century – 603-7960 0086

Alpine IVA-W502E head unit
Alpine SPR-17S component speakers
Alpine SWE-1000 subwoofer
Alpine PDX F4 amplifier
Wo Kee Hong Electronics Sdn. Bhd. – 603-7954 8088
Installation done by
CV Audio – 03-7710 6202

J’s Racing titanium catback exhaust system
J’s Racing test pipe or decat pipe
Before 189.43PS
After 194.97PS
Gain +5.54PS
Pentagon Enterprise Sdn. Bhd.
603-9223 3119 / 9223 9328

Okada Performance Ignition Coils
Before 194.97PS
After 200.65PS
Gain +5.68PS
N1 Racing
603-5636 5557/5559

Hondata FlashPro
J’s Racing carbon fibre intake kit
Before 200.65PS
After 209.98PS
Gain +9.33PS
J’s Racing: Pentagon Enterprise – 603-9223 3119 / 9223 9328
Hondata: N1 Racing – 603-5636 5557/5559

J’s Racing Stainless Steel Header
Before 209.98PS
After 214.74PS
Gain +4.76PS
Before 20.93kg/m
After 21.41kg/m
Gain +0.48kg/m
Pentagon Enterprise Sdn. Bhd. – 603-9223 3119 / 9223 9328

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