Staff Projects: The “Limited Edition” Civic
Much as we were ecstatic as we placed an order for the new Civic Type R, my dad and I faced an odd predicament with introducing the new car to our family. Specifically, we had to figure out how we would tell my mother that we were getting a “sports” car without receiving her spiel about impracticality and inconvenience. You see, anything that is performance oriented, considerably fast, and arguably uncomfortable can be deemed a “sports” car to my mom. Truth be told, this isn’t actually the first time we’ve had this problem - we’ve made excuses when we got a 2015 Subaru WRX a few years back too.
So what’s the excuse for the new FK8 Type R? Easy. It’s a limited edition Civic. Considering the facts, it wasn’t too hard to back up that claim. It’s more fuel efficient than our WRX, the ride is comfortable, it seats up to 5 people, and the trunk space is more than enough for groceries to fit. Apart from the car’s wild aerodynamic panels screaming at you every time you look, it’s really just a normal Civic hatchback surrounded with red accents.
Once excused and (sort of) justified, our FK8 Type R finally had the right to sit pretty in the garage. Do take note however that this car is the last thing from a garage queen - it has seen regular action out on track since we got it.
All told, Project FK8 started out with a set of Advan GT’s wrapped in GT Radial SX2s. Downsizing to 18” inch wheels was perfect for our application. Apart from the newfound confidence driving along EDSA and C5’s pothole-riddled lanes, the new set of lightweight wheels allowed us to shave a total of 21.7kg of unsprung weight. The GT Radial SX2 was actually a downgrade from the stock Continental SportContact6. We went with this tire solely for benchmarking purposes, as most local racers use the same tire. Unfortunately, the tire couldn’t keep up with the car’s performance, so the SX2 is now only going to be relegated for street use. To keep the handling of the car at it’s best, a fresh set of Advan A052s will be in charge of racetrack duties. Further enhancements to handling came by way of all the parts you can find in the Cusco catalog for the FK8.
The exterior is kept relatively simple with just some red Honda Access Japan side mirror covers and grill accents. The stock halogen fog lamps have been switched to a more luminous pair of Honda JDM projector fog lamps for better night-time drivability.
What makes this FK8 standout is how purpose-built it is for a daily driven track warrior. You may notice that the front grille doesn’t have the “Type R” badge anymore. That’s because we’ve swapped the stock Type R front grille for a standard Civic sports grill to provide better airflow to the upgraded Koyorad aluminum radiator behind it. Those fake vents near the fog lamps aren’t fake anymore either; Behind those are HKS twin oil coolers custom built with air ducts by Top Racing Hong Kong. I’m sure you’ve noticed the PRL Motorsports intercooler too, a stunning piece with CNC billet aluminum end tanks.
Pop the hood and you’ll find more aftermarket components to get the most out of the K20C Turbo. The Eventuri carbon fiber intake system is not just there for aesthetic purposes. If you’ve done your research you’ll know that the guys at Eventuri mean serious functionality. The fancy aesthetics are just a bonus.
Thermal wrap and adhesives can be seen in almost every component that is either sensitive to heat or producing heat. The charge pipe is wrapped using PTP gold thermal adhesive, while the turbo located below is wrapped using a PTP turbo blanket supplied by United Speed Racing and is custom-fit for the FK8.
Located below the turbo is a United Speed Racing downpipe and a PRL motorsports mid-pipe which as you’ve guessed, is also hugged by thermal exhaust wrap. The only thing left stock for now is the cat-back exhaust, which will soon be swapped out for something aftermarket. All of this is controlled and kept in check using Hondata ECU software. It plays host to features such as flat foot shifting, launch control, and rolling anti-lag.
Yes, this car has launch control and rolling anti-lag: https://youtu.be/79pMU8sJqyI
For a car that’s barely a year old, plenty has already been done to turn our Civic Type R into the best it can be. Despite that, this is only the beginning for Project FK8, and I can guarantee that there is a lot more stuff in-store for this car. Follow us to keep posted on our Civic Type R build!
Words and Photos by Franz Patrick Gaw