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1993 Honda Civic SIT-S - Street Level

The Project Must Go On....

Andy Anderson
Jul 9, 2010
Photographer: Mauricio Lara

Isaac Torres' 1993 Honda Civic SIR-S
Isaac Torres of El Paso, TX, spent the entirety of his teenage years drooling over the thought of one day having his very own Civic hatch. When his father inquired one day about his Civic love affair, Isaac really couldn't offer a validexplanation-he just wanted one-really, really bad. "I never saw myself driving any other type of car, there's just so much you can do with them. The same chassis can be found all over the place, but the look can be completely different," he says. So it was no surprise to anyone that Isaac's first car was an EG hatch; gold in color-badass in flavor.

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Isaac spent four years trying to build it up, but somewhere along the way things just weren't coming together the way he'd planned. He started to focus his time and energy on something a little more domestic, a little more house-like. And just a few short weeks later, Isaac sold his gold hatch and purchased a house.

2019 Honda Civic
$21,450 Base Model (MSRP) MPG Fuel Economy

For all homeowners, there comes a point where you get tired of matching cabinets to floors and carpet to drapes. Isaac was no different. His house rarely required oil changes or part swaps, and he soon grew tired of house tuning, and simply wanted his car-life back. Not more than a month later, Isaac stumbled upon an EH hatch out of California that had his name written all over it. The bright red paint required a few minor touch ups, the interior needed work, and standard components like wheels and an engine seemed to be missing from the car. But overall, it was in damn good shape for the price, and he was itching to start a new project. His wife gave him the thumbs up and Isaac snatched it up quick as he could.

"My wife could have told me to keep my money in a savings account, but she knew that I wouldn't come across this opportunity for a while," Isaac said. "I took her to see the car and she basically fell in love with the interior. She was sold."

A supportive wife, new car, and exciting project left Isaac a happy man, but he knew he had a lot of work to get the car up to speed. His first step was a fresh coat of paint. "The Civic landed in my garage with its original Milano red paint. As soon as I saw the body line on the car, I was convinced that I had to leave it that color. Having never owned a red car, I thought I'd give it a try," Isaac said.

He threw a friend a bone and let him take a crack at the paint job, but after two tries to get it right, Isaac was unsatisfied with the results. "There were sections in the engine bay where the clear coat was overlooked, my bumper seemed a little off tone, and the car hadn't been buffed properly." Telling his friend thanks, but no thanks, he drove the car over to a professional who wasted no time in getting things right. A new J's Racing wing and front lip were ordered and coated in the rich Milano hue as well. Paint complete, Isaac decided he'd need a new set of rollers to compliment the fresh re-spray. He grabbed a set of Volk RE30s to handle the job. "Once I installed everything, I was very content on how the car's new stance was. It was aggressive enough, and it had that 'pop' I was looking for," Isaac said. "It was exciting to see how people reacted to a large lip and awkwardly different wing."

Isaac was close to cruising in style, all he needed was that one little thing that tends to make cars move a little better; an engine upgrade. Isaac was ready for something different. "After driving an H22 for so long, I grew tired of blowing axles and shifter cables, not to mention the fact that pulling the heavy motor was a pain if I needed to do it," Isaac said. He set his sights on a B series engine as it's lighter and a little more mod-friendly. In Isaac's words, "the simplicity of it and the clean look in the bay helped me decide."

Weeks of patient waiting for the engine passed. The day it showed up, Isaac and a few of his friends got busy prepping the motor to run. "It's pretty simple when you have all the mounts and necessary hardware. Innovative mounts and some new hardware from Honda did the trick, and in a few hours the motor was in," Isaac states.

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With help from a friend, Isaac moved on to the final step of his build; the wire tuck. "We started by pulling the motor and removing the front end to access all of the harnesses, extended the wires, and ran them through the door," Isaac said. "We re-loomed and used heat shrink on all of the harnesses for the cleanest look possible. In the end, we probably used twice the amount of wires needed." An S2000 clutch cylinder was brought in to replace Isaac's 'horrible OEM one', and the A/C and power steering were deleted to give the car more of an empty look. A good wash on the engine and a fresh coat of paint in the bay sealed the deal, and Isaac closed the book on the hatchback- at least for the time being.

"It may have been one of the last things done, but there is always much more to come with this never-ending hobby," Isaac laughs. His words couldn't be any truer. It's been repeated over and over again; for a Honda enthusiast, enough really is never enough.

Bolts & Washers

B18C Engine
Innovative mounts
Koyo radiator
Samco hoses
GSR camshaft
GSR cylinder head
Mugen head gasket
SMSP header
ACT flywheel
ACT clutch
Skunk2 exhaust manifold
Skunk2 Cam seal
J's Racing intake
Walbro fuel pump
Earls lines & fittings
Earls inline filter
J's Racing intake piping
RSR exhaust system
NGK spark plugs & plug wires
B16 transmission
Scottbays custom harness
Spoon Sports radiator cap

Tein Flex coilovers
Tein shocks
Energy bushings
Skunk2 camber kit
Spoon Sports strut bar
ASR sub-frame & sway bar
Function 7 LCA

Hamp pads
Custom lines

Wheels & Tires
Volk RE30 diamond cut 15x7 (+35 offset)
Falken Azenis 205/50-15

Recaro DC5 seats
Checkered SIR S interior
Pioneer & Gathers speakers
Spoon Sports steering wheel
Spoon Sports shift knob
Spoon Sports rear strut tower bar
Circuit Hero shift extender

Milano Red R81 paint
J's Racing lip
J's Racing wing
J's Racing canards
J's Racing carbon fiber intake duct
Mugen side skirts
Honda optional window visors
Honda optional hood bra
Honda Primo banner

My lovely wife Naomi
My kids Emily and Isaac
Mom and Dad
Mauricio aka Mouse
Caldo crew
Scott @ scottbays
Freddy @ RPM
Gabe Lujan
The Eddies
Mark Dominguez
Ray aka Turble
Steve @ HMO
RPM in El Paso

Owner Specs

Favorite website:

Screen name or nickname:

Building Hondas for how long:
5 yrs

Your Dream Car:
2010 dodge 3500 dually on 24s

Build inspiration:
My wife

What's playing in your iPod/CD/ MP3 player right now:

Greatest movie of all time:
Drop Dead Fred

J's Racing
J's Racing was established in 1988 in Osaka, Japan, as a tuning shop specializing in Honda chassis. Since their inception, J's has tuned thousands of cars and sold performance and racing products to loyal customers around the world. Their products are developed through years of on-track experience, and they aim to manufacture high quality items using extensive racing knowledge. In addition to their race gear, J's is well known around the world for their participation in the Super Taikyu Racing Series in Japan every year, and sponsors several other track events in addition. Their mission statement, "Our Time has come - Our superior skills will shine through," is pretty cool too.


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San Diego, CA 92111
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