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B-Series Honda CRX Si - The Giant Killer

The bigger they are, the harder they fall ...

Rodrez
Mar 20, 2014
Photographer: Alvaro Naranjo of Trackaddict.cl

Unless you're a local, this aggressive black CRX's 52.05 track time at Pacifico Sport, and 1:10.88 at Autodroma Interlomas probably doesn't mean much to you, though it should. You see, both locations are based in Chile, where owner Felipe Gaete Moran resides, and both locations happen to house very competitive racetracks that cater to time attack events. Still, unless you've actually driven on these tracks yourself, the times are nothing more than a few digits, right? Well, just to give you an idea of how impressive those digits really are; similar lap times are reserved for tuned R35s and modified Porsche 997s on slicks. What's even more impressive is the fact that Felipe's CRX slays dragons with a mere high compression B-series powerplant and a full blown obsession with finding the perfect balance of power, handling, and driver ability.

1991 honda CRX si 949 racing 03 Photo 2/15   |   B-Series Honda CRX Si - The Giant Killer

Eight years prior to the lightning quick laps being brought home, Felipe was a student carting around in a 1977 Honda Civic with thoughts of possibly swapping a D15B under the hood. He adds, "That's all I had when a friend told me he wanted to show me something that would make me go crazy. He took me to this place and there it was; this black CRX. I borrowed 100 percent of the cost of the vehicle, which was $2500, in a tax free zone of Chile. It was nuts paying that amount for a CRX at that time, but I wanted it!"

The '91 CRX had actually been imported from Japan and even included a set of Tein coilovers, though the previous owner didn't like the harsh ride. As a result, he had swapped a set of Integra shocks and springs that elevated the 2-seater to new heights and as Felipe describes it, "[it] looked like a CRV!"

The car was torn down almost immediately but hit a stopping point rather quickly due to Felipe's status as a student. Money was incredibly tight and wanting to build something remarkable, the new owner spent the next three years with a bare shell and a head full of ideas that teetered on what his bank account would allow. After saving up enough money, a B20B swap was finally within reach and soon found its way under the hood. However, shortly after installing the 2.0L B-series, transmission and clutch woes began to arise. Fortunately, Felipe was able to find an ORC clutch and a used Spoon LSD for an affordable amount and had Julio Bravo of Bravoracing piece everything together. "This was the first time I could really run the car. Some Evos and WRXs were the first victims of this little Honda, but it wasn't enough to beat the times that Porsches were recording at that time." As money allowed, more modifications made their way to the build, including headwork and a set of Crower cams. PIC Select coilovers and a long list of chassis braces and crucial bushing upgrades were installed as driver development continued to progress. In an effort to gain more traction, wider, staggered 949 Racing wheels were installed and the factory gears were ditched in favor of shorter MFactory Third, Fourth, and Fifth gears. A simple but effective setup that essentially harnessed every ounce of power from the non-VTEC mill with the results culminating in Felipe's first track day record.

1991 honda CRX si SiR rear wing 06 Photo 6/15   |   B-Series Honda CRX Si - The Giant Killer

A funny thing happens when high-dollar car owners are overtaken by a $2,500 Honda, instead of just getting mad, they get faster. Felipe adds, "It happened. The Porsche and GTR owners started to really tune their cars. We were still the fastest but those R35s were right around the corner. We decided to drop a VTEC head on the B-series block." The VTEC conversion was accompanied by a set of Toda VTEC killer cams and a whole new beast was unleashed. During the cars next outing a valve spring decided to commit suicide at the worst possible time—the Time Attack finals. Down but not out, Felipe borrowed a customers K20 swapped EG and managed to muscle his way to a Third Place finish at the finals—enough to be crowned the 2012 Time Attack champion.

1991 honda CRX si carbon fiber lip 11 Photo 7/15   |   1991 Honda CRX Si Carbon Fiber Lip 11

After the phenomenal finish the year prior, many had high hopes and big expectations for Felipe in 2013. An answer was expected from the giant-killer CRX after news had spread about a GTR recently breaking the track record, which was then taken by a Porsche. The answer came in the form of a rebuilt B-series (B20) block using Wiseco pistons and Eagle rods that pushed compression all the way up to 13:1. To bring in more air, a Skunk2 Ultra (street) intake manifold was installed and greatly increased midrange output while bringing the power output up to 245whp. A rematch was inevitable.

Competing in the Open Class that Felipe calls home means you're facing the big boys. That is, cars that are fast right out of the box, or heavily modified for track use. What that also means is that competitors have the option to run slicks rather than radials. With the newfound power, a set of Hankook slicks, and brimming with confidence in his CRX, Felipe took back what was his, and currently holds the track record with no intentions of letting it slip away.

Bolts & Washers

Propulsion
B20B block
B16A head
Hasport engine mounts
Wiseco pistons 13:1
Eagle rods
Toda VTEC Killer cams
Golden Eagle cam gears
Port/polish head by Kainer Heads
Ferrea valves
Ferrea valvesprings
Ferrea retainers
Ferrea valve guides
K&N Apollo intake system
Custom velocity stack
Skunk2 Street Ultra series intake manifold
Skunk2 70mm throttle body
Vibrant couplers
Private Label SP 4-2-1 header
Bravoracing 3in exhaust
Gates blue racing timing belt
Vibrant external tensioner
ITR oil pump
Vibrant breather tank
Walbro 255lph fuel pump
Golden Eagle fuel rail
Marshall fuel pressure gauge
Accel internal coil
CSF radiator
Blackworks rad hoses
S80 ITR transmission
OEM ITR LSD
K-Tuned shifter
Custom shift linkage
Ogura Racing super single clutch
Ogura Racing flywheel
Mfactory 3rd, 4th, and 5th gears
Carbon synchros

1991 honda CRX si golden eagle cam gears 04 Photo 11/15   |   B-Series Honda CRX Si - The Giant Killer

Power
244whp/165lbs ft tq

Suspension
PIC Peformance Select coilovers
ASR full race 32mm rear swaybar
Kingpin front LCA
Skunk2 front camber kit
Kingpin spherical bushings
Rear camber/toe spherical joints
Energy Suspension rear trailing arm bushings
Skunk2 LCA
Trujillo Competicion alignment kit
Spoon front/rear shock tower bars
Blackworks rear sub-brace

1991 honda CRX si lico hurricane seat 07 Photo 12/15   |   B-Series Honda CRX Si - The Giant Killer

Resistance
Dixcel brake rotors
Hawk brake pads
OEM Integra LS calipers
AT Blue dot 4 fluid
Russel stainless braided lines

Wheels & Tires
949 Racing 15x8 +36 front
949 Racing 15x7 +36 rear
Semi-slicks
Nitto NT01 225/45-15 front
Nitto NT01 205/50-15 rear
Slicks
Hankook 225/50-15

Exterior
Bravoracing paint/body work
Carbon fiber lip/splitter
Carbon fiber rear diffuser
F1 style mirrors
SiR rear wing
Lexan side and rear windows

1991 honda CRX si 949 racing wheels 10 Photo 13/15   |   1991 Honda CRX Si 949 Racing Wheels 10

Interior
Danger Motors custom 6pt cage
Lico Hurricane seat
Simpscon racing latch harness
Momo Race steering wheel
NRG quick release hub
Mfactory weighted shift knob
Simil-kevlar gauge holder

Electronics
eCtuned OEM P29 ECU
eCtune datalogger
Autometer tachometer
Autometer oil pressure and water temp gauges
KBS Tune OBDI harness
Moroso switch panel

Props
To my wife and daughters for supporting me, Bravoracing for building the car, Trujillo Competicion for the alignment, Track Addict Chile for all the great pictures, Xenocron Tuning for supplying most parts

1991 honda CRX si carbon fiber front lip 05 Photo 14/15   |   B-Series Honda CRX Si - The Giant Killer

Owner Specs

Daily grind
KBS Tune

Favorite website
Hondatuningmagazine.com

Screen name or nickname
KBS

Building Hondas for how long
7 years

Dream car
NSX

Inspiration for this build
SS Works CRX

Future projects
EK K24, then S2000

Homebuilt

What began as an affinity for all things Honda-related, eventually turned into KBS Tune—the name of Felipe's shop. Run from his home with the help of two employees, Felipe has become the go-to guy in Chile for all Honda tuning matters. He adds, "I began supplying parts and I started with Xenocron tuning support. I bring in many parts from them, and actually, I'm his [Xenocron's] biggest customer. As KBS Tune's reputation continues to grow in the face of fierce track battles and an increasing number of satisfied customers, Felipe is now searching for a place to build a new shop.

1991 honda CRX si carbon fiber rear diffuser 09 Photo 15/15   |   B-Series Honda CRX Si - The Giant Killer

Sources

Energy Suspension
San Clemente, 92673
888-913-6374
http://www.energysuspension.com
HASport Performance
Phoenix, AZ 85040
602-470-0065
http://www.hasport.com
Golden Eagle Manufacturing
San Dimas, CA 91773
909-592-4311
http://www.goldeneaglemfg.com
Xenocron
Hillburn, NY 10931
845-504-5340
http://www.xenocron.com
By Rodrez
656 Articles

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