The old adage tends to rip a line down the middle of the show and go sides of the car modification scene. For as long as can be recalled, the go crowd always threw a dirty glance towards the show crowd and vice versa.
It was simple logic with the only pickle being that each side of the divide thought they had the upper hand in. if a car could go quick, it didn’t need to look the part and if a car couldn’t zip around like lightning, at least looking the part was a consolation.
Show cars or those prepared for auto shows prioritized cosmetics and left out the performance bits. On the other side of the fence, the performance-oriented bunch poured all their money into increasing horsepower and sharpening up the handling but tended to neglect the cosmetic or visual side of things.
Lately, the defined line that has split up these sectors has started to grey, allowing both sides to slowly merge and gel into a single form. Many show cars now integrate performance parts into their builds to earn extra points with the judges and many performance cars are starting to keep clean builds that also presents the machine in a more prominent light.
The reason we’re broaching the subject is because the Honda Civic Type-R here projects an image of a sports car with loads of carbon fiber bits on the exterior for plenty of show but leaving the go side of things a little murky. So let’s dive under the hood and see if it has the power to match.
Even in stock form, to call the Civic Type-R a capable package would be an insult. It is essentially a track weapon for the road that is quite a performer right off the showroom floor. However, only the eagle-eyed can tell it apart from the garden-variety Civics that have been given the Type-R facelift.
With that in mind, the owner hasn’t touched the engine much. Air entering the engine is forced via a K&N Typhoon open port system before being filtered by a K-Tune piece. The engine is now held in place by solid Hasport mounts that reduce vibrations and stabilizes the engine during high revs.
Once the combustion process is completed, the exhaust gases are channeled out with more pace via the 5Zigen extractor that leads to a J’s Racing 70RR exhaust to amplify the signature VTEC growl of the K20A and its stratospheric redline.
Apart from that, the engine has been left alone with only an ECU reflash by Chris of Pentagon Racing. The resulting fine-tune of the mapping to push the limits of the overprotective factory limits resulted in a very useable 220whp, more than sufficient to push the capabilities of the gifted chassis.
Speaking of which, the very capable chassis was left as it is with the exception of the complete range of chassis stiffening bars from Ultra Racing to tie up the key points and better disperse the loads from hard cornering.
While the Type-R’s brakes are quite sound, the stock rotors were replaced with slotted from J’s Racing to reduce brake fade and improve stopping performance. Adding to it are steel-braided brake hoses and EBC brake pads with a higher temperature range. Covering the brakes are a set of Volk Racing TE37C wheels wrapped in Maxxis Victra i-Pro rubber to keep the car stuck to the road.
On the inside, the driver is held in place with a Sparco Ergo grpTECH bucket seat. A host of Mugen parts make driving the car easier, such as pedals, carbon fiber gear knob and foot plates. Furthermore, a number of carbon fiber trim pieces has been added to the cabin such as a meter cover, steering trim, radio trim and A/C trim.
The outside asks all the questions regarding show and go. A number of Mugen bits again dominate the list, with the carbon fiber hood and custom air vents leading the pack. Joining it are a grille, lips, diffuser and GT wing; all from Mugen. Not stopping there, carbon fiber front fenders and door handle covers add to the visual appeal and also cut some weight from the exterior.
No doubt that the Type-R is a quick and nimble machine but if you were thinking that the cosmetic parts outnumbered the performance parts in this build, you might want to consider the fact that this car is already faster than most cars on the road, so it doesn’t need much more power. Secondly, being a Type-R, it can actually pull off the look, no doubt.
Car: Honda Civic Type-R
Engine Mods: K-Tune air filter, K&N Typhoon open port intake, Hasport engine mounts, 5Zigen extractor, J’s Racing 70RR exhaust, J’s Racing engine cover, J’s Racing oil cap
Electronics: HKS volt gauge, ECU reflash
Chassis & Handling: Ultra Racing bars,
Brakes: J’s Racing slotted rotors, EBC brake pads, Steel-braided brake hoses
Wheels & Tyres: Volk Racing TE37C 17-inch, Maxxis Victra i-Pro tyres
Interior: Sparco Ergo grpTECH bucket seat (driver), Mugen pedals, Mugen carbon fiber gear knob, Mugen foot plates, carbon fiber meter cover, carbon fiber steering trim, carbon fiber radio trim, carbon fiber A/C trim, Carrozzeria head unit
Exterior: Mugen carbon fiber hood, Mugen grille, Mugen lips, Mugen diffuser, Mugen GT wing, carbon fiber fenders, carbon fiber door handle cover, custom air scoop on hood
Power: 220hp (Tuned by Chris of Pentagon Racing)