Summer in California tends to be pretty busy, at least it is if you’re involved in covering import-related car events. It seems every other weekend, sometimes back to back, cars shows, meets, or motorsport events are taking place. In fact, it gets to a point that I find myself constantly updating our website’s monthly planner to include more events as they slowly (typically last minute) find their way to mainstream recognition. If you’re a fan of car events, and I’m assuming you are, this is a very good thing.
One show that has consistently remained top-of-mind for enthusiasts, especially those in the bay area, is the Blox Evolution car show series. Stemming from their original Open House events years prior, in 2013 the Blox staff eventually made their way to Pier 70 in San Francisco in an effort to dip their toe into the rather murky car show waters. Their freshman and sophomore efforts were hailed as an absolute success, so it was no surprise that their third annual event would be packed with some top notch builds and plenty of foot traffic
Not surprising, the Honda turnout was massive at Blox Evo 3 and garnered the majority of attendees’ attention. And whenever you talk Hondas in the Bay Area, you’re going to hear the name ATS*Garage, and for good reason. This group has spent years gaining notoriety, landing magazine articles and covers and are often looked to as Honda trendsetters not only in the Bay Area, but worldwide. Here’s a look at just a few of the cars that pulled us in during the big show.
Jay Powers of ATS*Garage has built a number of cars, including a CRX and EJ hatchback that both landed HT covers years ago. More recently, he’s been tinkering with a few cars and decided to debut this Integra, complete with Mugen RNR wheels, lip and rear wing, Ganador mirrors, and some more Mugen goods under the hood.
Jimmy Nguyen not only photographed the event for us, but he also brought out his recently completed H2B-swapped EM1. With the same quality we saw from his previous cover car CRX build, he combined a little modern, like the First Molding front lip and custom hue, along with a little old school, like the Gab Sports wheels and shock tower brace.
With Jimmy going from a CRX build to a coupe, it was fitting to see friend and fellow builder, Son Nguyen, do something similar. Son took on a chassis that doesn’t get as much attention as other Civic generations and to say he did it justice is an understatement. The well-organized engine bay, a staple for both he and Jimmy, surrounds a nicely outfitted K20 swap. Volk CE28s, a Rotora big brake kit, and a few aero changes make for one of the best looking EM2s we’ve come across.
An S2000 without fender flares or massive aero changes is becoming somewhat scarce at car shows. Joey Abundiz seems to have avoided the bolt-on girth movement and in turn created a sleek, clean overall appearance. The hardtop, MRacing mirrors, First Molding hood, and Volk ZE40s suit the AP2 chassis nicely.
Chris Sakai of ATSG brought his Aviator Grey Pearl DX to Pier 70 with its classic Rando Sports aero and Regamaster Evo combo. Sakai’s build is as complete as it gets, incorporating substantial performance, aesthetics, rare parts, and even full blown audio features that make this seasoned vet’s EJ a contender at any show in any region.
HT alumni, Ray Bautista, finally brought his del Sol out into the public eye after a long time off. Parked next to G.J. Santiago's blue version, the duo made an impact with a car that doesn’t get as much respect as it deserves, though these two examples make for a compelling argument.