I’ve been an automotive enthusiast for as long as I can remember. There’s just something about the way a car moves, the way a car sounds, and as any five year old kid will tell you, the way a car looks. If you’ve loved cars since you were a kid, I can guarantee you that your inner child comes alive every time you kick back and stare after a long days finished work, after every time you go for a drive with absolutely no destination, and after every time you floor the pedal to the metal. Only real enthusiasts will know what I’m talking about.
If you’re on my FaceBook Page, you may have caught a couple glimpses of my very own Integra as I’ve posted some quick photos of it here and there, but like many car guys, I never got around to doing a full feature on it. We’re always waiting until we get a couple more parts, waiting until it’s “ready”, but when is that exactly? Is it when Santa has finally given us everything we asked for on the Christmas list, or when you’re just satisfied and happy with the current state of your pride and joy?
After a six year long love-hate relationship with my old Eclipse, the unthinkable happened; one night a mysterious engine fire would put an abrupt halt to what was without a doubt my childhood love. I was devastated, in shock, and in disbelief. This couldn’t be happening, yet there I was in a cloud of smoke. I had spent so much time and effort into that car, but I never really took a moment to just relax and enjoy it. I regret it, but I wasn’t about to make the same mistake twice.
Enter the Integra, my second car as well as my second chance. While I do miss my old Eclipse very much, I took this as an opportunity to start over. The exterior pretty much gives away that this car hasn’t been heavily modified, but is rather a street tuned machine. It’s been my daily driver, winter beater, and track machine for the past three years. It’s come a long way and has treated me very well, hence why I felt like now is a good time to do a feature on it. We’ll start off with the exterior…
…which has been given subtle enhancements in the form of a Mugen front lip and OEM optional side skirts. An OEM Integra Type R wing rounds off things in the rear but also helps by providing down force which comes in handy for those high speed circuits.
Given that the car isn’t exactly a powerhouse, it benefits greatly from the suspension upgrades as Integra’s are more known for their handling after all. A set of DropZone N1 coilovers help stiffen things up along with Hard Race camber kits in both the front and rear, while an OEM ITR front strut bar and Benen B-pillar bar help keep the chassis extra rigid. Hawk HPS brake pads are assisted by a brake master cylinder stopper for when things have to come to an abrupt stop. A big thing for me while building this car is “driver feel”, so Energy Suspension steering rack bushings have also been fitted to help give a more responsive steering wheel feel…
…which comes in the form of a JDM ITR SRS steering wheel. Now, like I said, driver feel; the interior has been put together using carefully selected parts that would not only aid in driving hard at the track, but ultimately enhancing the driving experience. A Blox NEO Chrome 490 Spherical shift knob matched with a Circuit Hero Shift Level Extender are both mounted on top of a K-Tuned B&D Series Shifter, which is then connected to some Energy Suspension shifter bushings to help give a more solid and precise shifting feel.
This fully adjustable unit allows the user to place the shifter where he or she wants allowing for comfortable (and of course, shorter!) shifting. You can even adjust the length of the throw for super quick shifts.
Now I get a lot of people asking me why I have such a crazy (not to mention tall) setup for my shifter, and it all comes back to driver feel. Having the shifter so close to the steering wheel is not only more comfortable, but also means that I can have both hands on the wheel most of the time.
…as well as a Top Gauge Easy Link II help keep me informed of what’s going on with the car, while a Broadway 270mm Flat Blue rear view mirror helps me be more aware of my surroundings – something that is vitally important when pushing a car to its limits!
A Spoon Sports radiator cap helps finish things off under the hood while adding that nice touch (I should note that this has been removed for the time being – do not use a higher capacity radiator cap on a stock cooling system!).
Well there you have it, my personal Integra in all its glory. I’ll admit, it’s nothing special, but to each his own. Like I said, our projects are pretty much never done and are constantly changing. In fact a few things have already changed since I did this shoot! How will it look like in the future?
Ride Or Die.
Click HERE to view the full photo set on Flickr.
1997 Acura Integra RS SE.
Fujitsubo Power Getter Catback Exhaust.
OEM JDM ITR Catalytic Converter.
OEM JDM ITR 96Spec Headers.
Short Ram Intake (Wrapped in DEI Gold Reflector Tape, 3″ Diameter).
Blox Radiator Stays (Purple).
Blox V1 Cam Seal (Purple).
Password: JDM Magnetic Drain Plugs (Oil Pan And Tranny).
T1R V-Power Voltage Stabilizer.
Spoon Sports Reservoir Covers.
Spoon Sports Type-D Radiator Cap.
OEM ITR Front Strut Bar.
DropZone N1 Coilovers (12kgf/mm Front, 8kgf/mm Rear).
Rota Slip Streams (15×6.5 +38 all around).
Federal 595 Tires (195/55R15 all around).
Hawk HPS Brake Pads (Front and Rear).
ATE Super Blue (Brake/Clutch Fluid).
Benen B-Pillar Bar (Polished Stainless).
Moroso Roll Bar Padding.
Brake Master Cylinder Stopper.
Hard Race Front And Rear Camber Kits (-2.3 Front, -1.8 Rear).
Muteki Tuner Lug Nuts (red).
Energy Suspension Steering Rack Bushings.
Aluminum Valve Stem Caps (Blue).
OEM ITR Wing.
Replica Mugen Front Lip.
Replica OEM Optional Side Skirts.
DDM Tuning 6000K 35w HID Kit.
Nokya 2500K Hyper Yellow Bulbs (Highbeams/DRL).
Replica Red Honda “H” Emblems.
OEM “HONDA” Emblem (EF9).
LED Reverse Bulbs.
LED Licence Plate Bulbs.
OEM JDM ITR 98Spec Gauge Cluster.
OEM JDM ITR SRS Steering Wheel.
Recaro SR3 Trail (Blue).
Recaro Shoulder Pads.
Bride RO-Type Rails.
Blox “Limited Series” NEO Chrome 490 Spherical Shift Knob.
Circuit Hero “Limited Edition” Type-II Shift Lever Extender (Neo Chrome).
K-Tuned B&D Series Shifter.
Energy Suspension Shifter Bushings.
Replica Mugen Pedals.
ITR Replica Shift Boot.
ITR Replica Arm Rest.
Tekniq Enduro Floor Mats.
Broadway 270mm Flat Blue Rear View Mirror (BW-114).
MTEC Super White LED Dome Light.
Top Gauge Easy Link II.
LED Trunk Light.