Whenever I hear someone mention a four-door Integra, I immediately think about riding in my dad's trusty ol' Mazda 626. That was a cool car. He'd take us to the video store, then make us wait outside while he cornered the sales clerk into telling him when the next Star Trek video would be released. Sometimes it would take hours. During the summer months, he'd leave us with a tub full of ice cream, which would all have melted by the time he returned. After that summer, the car began to smell of rotten dairy products and we couldn't stand to be in it for more than a few minutes at a time. Actually, that car wasn't very cool at all.
Anyway, Rakesh Patel's four-door GS-R leads me far away from those childhood memories. Instead, all I can think about is copping rides in the turbocharged bad boy. Rakesh's intention was to somehow reach a three-way equilibrium of looks, speed, and comfort. The car carries all three in spades, but that may be hard for you to notice because Rakesh is all about style and subtlety, which also pleases the ladies.
Rather than changing to the Japanese Type R front end, Rak opted to maintain the American four eyes and direct his funds to alternative exterior enhancements. Derek at Body Pro's gave the car a full body makeover. After shaving the side moldings and emblems, Derek mounted a full Bomex body kit to all four edges of the Integra. Knowing that a stock paint job would not be sufficient enough to turn heads, a custom light metallic blue paint was smothered on an ADF carbon-fiber rear wing, and a motorcycle gas cap further aids exterior enhancements. The finishing touch is a blue carbon Kevlar hood.
With only 128 lb-ft of torque from the GS-R's stock B18C1 engine, Rak knew that turbocharging was in order to up the torque and horsepower enough to stupefy all of the two-door Integras out there. Who better to turn to for forced induction assistance than the turbocharger specialists at FasTrax? ADF customized a remarkable turbo kit in order to bring the FasTrax turbocharger to life. Boost pressure is dependent on a Tial wastegate and whatever Rak-dawg decides to dial the HKS EVC in at. Fuel pressure gets a bump up with a Bosch pump forcing high-octane petrol through the hungry RC injectors. And masterminding fuel and ignition maps is a PMS engine management system.
Dis-satisfied with straight-line acceleration only (yes, there is more to life than that (we don't exactly know what), Rak shored up the Integra's handling with Ground Control coilover sleeves, Tokico adjustables, DC Sports strut bars, and a rear lower tie-bar (also by DC). Brakes have been upgraded to a Baer rotor and caliper package with Endless pads all around. It's a simple and effective treatment for taking on the random and reckless Los Angeles traffic with any sort of sanity.
After all this turbocharged, suspension tuning, body-modding mumbo jumbo, perhaps the most unique part of the Rak's car is the wheels. They are 18-inch Ro_Ja five-spokes, designed by our very own RJ DeVera (and manufactured by Motegi wheels). What's on Rak's car is the very first set of 18s in the world. This is, of course, at press time. Since this magazine takes so damn long to produce, there are probably hundreds of thousands of these things lying around by the time you read this.
Moving inside, an Auto Power rollbar circles a pair of Sparco racing seats. Schroth three-point harnesses strap both the driver and front passenger in place. Comfortable? Maybe not, but at least you'll have a better chance at surviving an accident. A full system complete with Sound Stream amps, Boston Acoustic subs and mids, and a Pioneer head unit make things sound like a rolling rock concert. Just look inside no room for groceries in this trunk. Maybe for a small army of ants but nothing else. OK, OK, a pack of gum can fit, too. Happy?
Has the Rak-Man found his three-way equilibrium? We definitely think so. Does this Integra totally change my notion of four-doors? Not really. Let's just hope he stays away from ice cream.