Theft, unfortunately, has become as commonplace as ever in today's import community. Every day you hear about someone getting their car stolen or having expensive aftermarket wheels taken from them. Thieves are like the cancer of the scene; you never know when it is going to strike and when it does, the results are usually devastating. Enthusiasts have taken steps to protect themselves, but oftentimes their efforts are of little concern to crooks. Theft runs rampant within the Honda subculture. Their accessibility makes them an easy target, and Hondas often have pricey parts that others want. Honda owners know that if you don't want your car stolen, you don't leave it outside. If it is out in the public, thieves will spot them and find ways to take them. Kill switches, steering wheel quick releases, and other theft deterrents have proven to be useless. The only way you can prevent your Honda from being stolen from the front of your house is to camp out on your front porch all night with a shotgun in hand-and eventually that might not even work.
Jorge Sandoval is no stranger to theft. In his 24 years of life he's owned a number of different Hondas, and thieves have always had an eye on him. He has had so many encounters with theft that you would think he'd wash his hands of Hondas altogether. "I've owned five Hondas over the last couple of years and two of them, an Integra and a Civic, were stolen from me," Jorge says. "It is one of the worst feelings, and it doesn't get any easier after the first time. I think I've learned to be more patient because of it, but having something taken from you is definitely a hard pill to swallow." This BMW Highland Green-painted hatchback looks otherwise immaculate, but it too has fallen prey to thievery. "I've had some encounters with people stealing parts off this car, so I am very careful about where I drive it. My Spoon Sports towhook was ripped off of the car, and I even had my carbon Kevlar BackYard Special wing stolen. It's ridiculous."
For as much negativity as he has had to face, he moves on because he loves his hobby. Hondas have been on his mind long before he could even drive one. "I got into cars back around 2000 or so. My buddies and I would go to shows like Hot Import Nights and get pumped up about what cars we wanted to buy and fix up when we finally got our driver's licenses." He may not have been able to complete his previous builds because they were unceremoniously taken from him, but you could think of them as testbeds for the final product you see here today. "I already had a pretty good idea of what I wanted to do after I bought the shell so I just started collecting parts," Jorge says. "When I was younger I was really into the show car scene and how a car looked but as I got older, I realized that I wanted to build a Honda that I could enjoy everywhere, whether it be at a dragstrip, road course, or cruising on the streets. I wouldn't call it a show car because I use it."
The first noticeable mod on Jorge's Civic hatchback is his bright Spa Yellow Volk Racing TE37s. They add a very sharp contrast to the dark tone of the car, and it makes his Civic instantly recognizable at any event he attends. He didn't specify but we think the custom color is also a way to deter thieves from taking his Volks. Yellow TEs are anything but common and can be spotted almost immediately. When he wants to get some seat time on the 1320, he has a set of extra 15-inch 5Zigen FN01Rs with slicks mounted. Bringing the car a couple inches closer to the pavement are Function & Form Type 2 coilovers mated to a JDM Integra Type R five-lug conversion and Spoon Sports clappers. The rest of this EH2 Civic's exterior remains very simple; a Wings West front lip adds a touch of style to the front bumper, along with a set of Vision Technica side mirrors. Mounted to the hatch is a rare Livesports rear wing that we all hope never falls into the hands of crooks. You may not notice at a glance but the rear glass has been replaced with FAL plexiglass for a bit of weight savings. The interior follows suit with simplicity in mind. Confetti-print Recaro seats replace the OEM seats with matching confetti-print material used to line the door panels and armrest.
Like every great Honda build past and present, the majority of the work has been done underhood. Housed inside the shaved engine bay is a Japanese-spec '01 K20A Type R motor. The valvetrain has been beefed up with Stage 2 Blueprint Racing camshafts and Supertech hardware, while air induction is vastly improved via a Skunk2 Pro Series intake manifold and 70mm throttle body. An R-Crew K-swap header delivers exhaust gases to a custom Badlandz Engineering exhaust pipe before exiting through an A'pexi World Sport II muffler. Fuel delivery comes from a Walbro pump and Acura RDX 410cc injectors. The K20R motor is fine-tuned using a Hondata K-Pro and pumps out a stout 235 whp. Attention to detail is important to Jorge so he adds a touch of the Spa Yellow you see on his wheels on the custom coil cover. Cut out of the plate is the word Insidious, which represents his car crew and friends.
Instead of playing the victim, Jorge has learned to take all of the bad situations in stride. He's been into cars as long as he can remember, and he wasn't about to let some crooks ruin a hobby for him. With that said, he's presented a build that is one of the most well rounded we've ever seen. He has utilized high-quality products and hasn't allowed thieves to force him to take shortcuts with his Civic. If theft is the cancer of the Honda community, then Jorge has proven that he is a survivor.
Behind the Build
Core Lab Analysis Technician
Skateboarding and snowboarding
"My motivation was to build the car I always wanted when I was younger that was multifunctional, whether it be drag racing, road racing, or just a simple drive to the store."
1994 Honda Civic
Engine '01 2.0L Honda K20A; Hasport engine mounts with race inserts; Blueprint Racing Stage 2 camshafts; Supertech valvesprings, retainers; Karcepts cold air intake; Skunk2 70mm throttle body, Pro Series intake manifold, intake manifold gasket, timing chain tensioner; K-Tuned TPS sensor, heater hoses; Walbro 255-lph fuel pump; Aeromotive fuel pressure regulator; R-Crew fuel rail, exhaust manifold; Acura RDX 410cc fuel injectors; carbon-fiber fuel pump cover; A'pexi World Sport II exhaust; Badlandz Engineering 2.5-inch Y-pipe; NRG slim battery, hood dampers; C&R radiator; Samco Sport hoses; Modified valve cover with oil catch can bungs; Spoon Sports radiator cap, reservoir socks; T1R oil cap
Drivetrain OEM K20A Type R transmission with 4.7 final drive; 36mm Acura axles; Competition Clutch Stage 4 six-puck clutch; Buddy Club shifter box; Karcepts shifter plate
Suspension Function & Form Type 2 coilovers with Swift Springs; OEM ITR 22mm front, rear sway bar; Spoon Sports rear strut bar; Function7 rear lower control arms; Buddy Club front camber control arms; Skunk2 rear camber control arms; Omni Power rear spherical bearings; Benen Industries rear B- and C-pillar bars; Comptech subframe brace; K-Tuned traction bars
Brakes 36mm JDM ITR five-lug swap; Spoon Sports front brake calipers; Hawk HPS brake pads; Earl's stainless steel brake lines; DC5 brake master cylinder; custom 3mm rotor spacer; DBA front rotors; custom brake line tuck
Wheels/Tires 16x7 +42 Volk Racing TE37; 205/45-16 General Exclaim UHP; Skunk2 Black Series lug nuts; ARP wheel studs; optional 15x7 5Zigen FN01R with 24.5-inch slicks for drag racing
Exterior Wings West RS front lip; Livesports EG6 rear wing; BMW Highland Green Metallic paint; JDM OEM EG6 headlights, SiR clear corners; FAL rear windows; OEM thin side moldings; Vision side mirrors; Golden Eagle towhook; shaved engine bay
Interior Recaro LeMans seats; Benen Industries harness bar; Spoon Sports steering wheel, shift knob; NRG steering hub, quick release; JDM OEM EG6 SiR gauge cluster, console, coin pocket, amber clock armrest; custom confetti-print door panels and armrest fabric; JDM ITR five-piece floormats; Mugen ECU
Electrionics R-Crew K-swap engine harness; Hondata K-Pro; Alpine head unit, Type R speakers
Gratitude "I'd like to thank Pat and Carlos from Quickworks Photo for the great photo shoot; Lawrence at Dyno Spot Racing for the tune; Team Insidious guys and all the friends who helped along the way."