Many track guys will tell you the best way to build a track car is to take your bone stock vehicle, book a track day, and go race it. As you learn about the vehicle and what and where it can be improved, you make changes accordingly. Some will say you start with basic suspension upgrades; others will say you should start with tires. Some guys begin with a bunch of go-fast parts, while others go crazy with aero modifications. In the midst of all of these changes, one must remember the brakes, and definitely can't forget the most important and, oddly, the most often overlooked aspect of a proper track car: the safety equipment. It can prove overwhelming for many looking to get in to tracking their Honda - trying to figure out where to begin with all of this. But not for Tom Nguyen. His answer to the debate was simply to do them all.
The incredible vehicle you see before you was built on direct inspiration from the Science of Speed S2000. The beauty and success of that car did more than enough for Tom, and he modeled this build after it. Naturally, he turned to SOS to do the majority of the work. The sharp lines and fluid curves of the aero package come from a J's Racing GT wide body kit, SOS DTM wing on the rear, and Mracing mirrors with custom brackets that Tom designed. The wheel wells are filled with 18x10.5/9.5 RAYS 57Extreme wheels, with grip being provided by Toyo R1R tires. Stopping power comes from Stoptech ST-40 calipers up front and ST-22 calipers in the rear, with Carbotech pads being utilized all around. Dampening duties are taken care of by JRZ RS Pro coilovers with external reservoirs.
The beauty of the exterior may cause one to doubt if the car is really built for the track. The countless widebody or flared and stanced Hondas you've seen at your local car show or meet force a double take - but one glance into the cabin and you realize it's serious business. A Firesafe Supression system sits ready to save driver and passenger, as well as engine bay and fuel cell. A Race Technology Dash2 pro dash sits atop the steering column, complemented by their MK2 datalogger and Video 4 recording system. The Status kevlar seats sit atop OEM seat rails with a custom seat bracket that Tom designed so he could retain the OEM sliding mechanism. Finishing off the interior updates, an SOS DTM cage protects occupants in case of the unthinkable.
In the power department, Tom chose a Science of Speed Stage 2 supercharger with upgraded heat exchanger, and an SOS oil cooler kit in conjunction with a KOYO radiator to keep fluid temps in check. This setup produced a rock solid 466whp and 350 lb.-ft. of torque, with more power ready to be made if it weren't for a faulty boost controller. With a new unit installed, 500-plus whp is expected.
"The build was finally finished the way I wanted it last month," Tom states. "I plan to do some HPDE events as well as Time Attack once I get some good seat time under my belt." You can start here or you can start there, or you can be like Tom and build the hell out of every aspect of a vehicle and get it to be exactly what you want before going back out on the track. Tom's build is living proof that nice, expensive parts don't only get tacked onto show-only cars; they can indeed be used for what they were intended.