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1997 Honda Integra Type R - Is He For Real?

Jeremy Duarte Speaks His Mind On Building A Genuine Four-Door Integra Type R

Terence Patrick
Aug 28, 2008
Photographer: Rodrez
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Behold a unique Honda Integra Type R belonging to Jeremy Duarte, owner of Red Zone Performance in Fremont, CA. Jeremy's '97 Type R stands out from the crowd by, first of all, being painted Honda's S2000 Laguna Blue Pearl, a diversion from the standard issue Type R Championship White. Secondly, this is one of the rare four-door, right-hand drive models from Japan. We know what you're thinking, that this was a standard Integra four-door that Jeremy converted. Well, you're wrong. We asked Jeremy for his thoughts regarding the Type R:

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How He Got This Type R
A friend of mine bought it and he brought it to our shop for us to build it for him. He ended up leaving for Utah, leaving the car at our shop. I got a call from him one day telling me that he was going to be in Utah for a long while, so he ended up giving me the car. But the car at the time was a bare shell with '92 Civic DX brakes, no suspension, interior, bumpers, gauges, taillights or anything. The car was [in the United States] prior to my friend buying it and was used as a parts car. So the only thing left was the frame, hood and headlights, so I had to put the car back together. Everything on the car, except for the taillights, are JDM. The taillights are USDM, only because there's not much difference between the Japanese or American versions and also because I had a set laying around the shop.

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On His Goals For Building The Type R
When I got this car and learned that it was a Type R, I didn't want to keep it naturally-aspirated because I knew it wouldn't make the power that I wanted. I knew that I wanted a car that was clean, functional and made big horsepower on regular gas, because I didn't want to use racing fuel.

On The Choice Of Tuning Components
It's basically what I know works together well. I've never had a problem with Wiseco pistons. I always carry Supertech because we're an authorized dealer and I've never had an issue with their valvetrain. I feel that you have to carefully choose which products you go with because some work great and some don't. The cams that are in the Type R were installed on a whim. I was using stock Type R cams and only making 425 hp to the wheels. We had a set of the Blox cams in the shop and decided to try them out. We ended up gaining 90 hp with the Blox cams.

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On Mistakes And Changes
I wasn't particularly happy with the Top Fuel carbon-fiber lip, which was the last piece I needed to complete the car. I got a good deal on it, but didn't really like it. Since the photos of the car were taken, I've changed the lip to a Chargespeed lip that I like a lot more. I've also done a few upgrades since the photo shoot; I've installed Porsche 911 rear-calipers that are the monoblock design with a 12.9-inch rotor on the front brakes of my car. The next step is to tune the car further to try and get more horsepower than the 525 hp we have now.

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On The Choice Of Color
I didn't have an idea for a color when I first started with the car. On a whim, I was about to go with a green color, then I saw the [at the time] new S2000's Laguna Blue Pearl, so I went with that color against everyone's recommendation of keeping it stock Championship White. There were already a lot of Champ White Integras out there and I wasn't a fan of any of the other stock Type R colors: black, red, silver and yellow. So I wanted a different color and because it's my car, I wanted to personalize it and I don't care if people think I should keep a Type R stock color. When customizing a car, you can't always go with an OEM color for a particular model. Also, we had Sick Industries in Santa Clara do the custom chrome work on the wheels, turbo housing, intercooler pipe and valve cover using a special purple, blue and green iridescent finish. The color is a little darker than I wanted, so I'm going to be changing it up for an upcoming show.

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Drag Or Super Lap Battle?
I plan on going out to one of the NASA (National Auto Sport Association) HPDEs (High Performance Driving Event), but I don't plan on competing the car in a Super Lap Battle. I think a front-wheel drive car with this much horsepower wouldn't be the best car to compete in a Super Lap Battle without damaging anything, so I'm more interested in doing a track day to see how that goes first. But I do plan on putting the car on the drag strip.

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On Other People's Reactions
I don't trailer the car anywhere; I drive it about 50-percent of the time during the week. I pick my son up from school in it. Would I leave it at the mall? No way. A lot of guys think it's a converted USDM Integra because our shop is known for doing those types of conversions, but we have to tell people that this one is real. Most people actually don't notice because they are in awe of the engine, then they're surprised to see that the steering wheel is on the right. I've been pulled over three times and every time the police officer was all, "Whoa! The steering wheel is on the right!" and I've been able to get away without a ticket two of those three times. The one ticket I did get was due to the exhaust, which is a straight four-inch exhaust with no catalytic converter. It's pretty loud for a four-incher.

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Fast Facts
'97 Honda Integra Type R
Owner Jeremy Duarte
Hometown Fremont, California
Daily Grind Owner, Red Zone Performance

Under The Hood2.0 B18B1; Blox cams, throttle body; Edelbrock manifold; Garrett GT35R watercooled turbocharger; Red Zone Performance custom exhaust, intercooler and pipes; Supertech valves

Power 525 hp at 9100 rpm (dyno); 309 lb-ft torque at 7000 rpm

Stiff Stuff Function & Form Type II coilovers and springs (f/r)

Stoppers Porsche 911 rear-calipers (f) with 12.9-inch rotors; Axxis Metal Master pads

Rollers Advan SA3R Gen II 17x7.5 (f/r); Falken Azenis 225/35/17 (f/r)

Outside Top Fuel front lip

Inside Nardi steering wheel; JDM Type R full interior

WWW www.gruppe-s.com/Advan/advanwheels.htm (Advan); axxisbrakes.com; bloxracing.com; chargespeed.com; edelbrock.com; f2autolife.com (Function & Form); redzoneperformance.com; supertechperformance.com

By Terence Patrick
64 Articles

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