It's 10:30 a.m. on April 30th, just a few hours before the doors to Autocon L.A. swinging open to usher in a ridiculously large number of show goers to romp through row after row of builds big and small of varying degrees of taste. They'll be immediately greeted by high-end performance cars sporting wheel and tire setups with specs that measure in at over three times that of what the OEM's well-trained engineers formulated during the vehicle's design. A few steps further and they're sure to run into the large number of Subie and Evo builds that seemed to outnumber all other makes and models at this year's show. And any of those eager show goers that might have a bit of Honda knowledge under their Supreme or Undefeated limited-release caps will undoubtedly stop in their tracks when they see this little gem.
Admittedly, when the hood was closed as I ran by, scrambling to get all of the cars shot before the crowds rushed in, I noted how clean this fourth-gen. Civic was, but it wasn't nearly as wild as some of the other Honda builds in the convention center. There were some ninth-gen. Civics and a handful of S2000s that were either slammed to the floor or relying on ultra-aggressive wheel fitments to grab your attention. Some even looked to be unfinished, their owners' priority being turbochargers and carefully chosen hood-exit wastegate routing—but shock factor isn't what this build is about.
On the outside, a JDM front-end conversion, carbon fiber front lip and Js Racing hood are the very first things I noticed, followed by the gunmetal TE37s. That's about it. Extremely simple on the outside, I didn't see anyone nearby to comment on what was under the hood and I halfway expected to find the B-series that these chassis are often powered by.
Making the rounds I eventually ended up back at the same Civic, having missed the owner once again. However, this time the hood was lifted and I was able to see that it was indeed swapped, but it was a K20 chosen to power this ED chassis.
The custom, dimple die plate that replaced the upper radiator support is a nice touch, as is the pie cut intake tubing along with the catch can that resides in that awkward oval hole behind the passenger side headlight. The valve cover was treated to some custom pin striping and capped off with a dimple die coil plug cover. The firewall is free of any clutter and a Wireworx harness pulls it all together.
At large-scale car shows builds like this seem to be a dying breed, and maybe that's why it pulled me in so quickly. Though I'm biased toward Honda builds, I enjoy all types of vehicles and the fact is something this simple and well thought out can stand out so much in a hall full of high-dollar builds, many of which are fitted with the exact same *insert popular aero maker here* kit. It's a testament to the old adage that "sometimes less is more."