What began 12 years ago as a simple car meet with 50 cars held in Eibach‘s California headquarters parking lot has evolved into the largest Honda meet on the West Coast, with over 1,000 cars attending this year’s event.
“Last year there were 800 registered cars. This year was the largest turnout yet for the Eibach Meet, and it continues to grow. If you asked me a few years back if I ever believed this was possible I would be lying if I said no!” says co-host Matt Rodriguez.
Due to the overwhelming demand for space — both cars and spectators — the event was held at Storm Stadium in the city of Lake Elsinore. Even with the larger venue, the streets leading up to the entrance were jam-packed hours prior to opening for vehicle roll-in. With a little road rage and some quick evasive driving skills, I was able to snatch a parking spot approximately half a mile from the venue; it was a walk I didn’t mind taking as it seemed to be quicker than waiting in that line!
The Honda scene was abuzz when word got out that RC’s Garage was commissioned to help Mike Schietroma build and develop the craziest ’99 Honda Civic the industry has ever laid eyes on. The team pulled out all the stops and created the very masterpiece you see in front of you. The entire engine bay was meticulously shaved prior to the vehicle receiving a fresh coat of paint in both inside and out.
A K24A2 now calls the engine bay home as does the JDL Auto Design exhaust manifold, All-In Fabrication center-feed intake manifold, and Garrett GT35R. A set of Injector Dynamics ID1000 fuel injectors is paired with a K-Tuned fuel pressure regulator. A Turbosmart 45 Hypergate wastegate and blow-off valve helps to relieve boost pressure as Hondata’s K-Pro 4 engine management system and boost controller delivers the proper fuel trims and ignition timing. Rywire’s precision Mil-spec harness was also added to this methodical build equation.
Exterior modifications were comprised of a set of Backyard Special bumpers, JDM side moldings, Project Mu calipers, Volk Racing CE28N wheels and air ride suspension. Every nut and bolt and trim were either customized or replaced with a new OEM set.
Interior modifications include a pair of ICB Pursuit MKI Kevlar-backed seats, Willans harnesses, Nardi steering wheel, and a custom fully chromed K-Tuned billet shifter.
Cruising though the event, we came across a familiar face and pillar to the Honda community. Brian Gillespie, owner of Hasport Performance, was in attendance with his son Carter to display Carter’s ’92 Acura Integra. “What are those”? I asked, as I stared at the Integra’s wheel and tire combination.
“Carter’s DA is running Konig Milligram 18 x 10 +25 front with 285/30ZR-18 Continental Extreme Contact DW and 18×8.5 +35 rear wheels with 235/40ZR-18 Continental Extreme Contact DW tires,” says Gillespie.
“That front wheel and tire setup is larger than what I have on my ’05 Subaru STI! With a front-engine, front-wheel-drive setup with those size wheels and tires, there has to be some inherent understeer, correct?” I asked.
“With the larger front tire there’s plenty of grip and understeer isn’t a problem. Our Hasport V6 CRX with its 245 front and 215 rear was pretty balanced and it was easy to get the back to step out. This an evolution of that. The new setup was originally meant for the CRX, but we just couldn’t get that big of a tire on it. The Integra has much more generous rear wheel arches and the Hush Performance front end gives us the room for the monstrous 285/30-18.”
During our conversation, Myles Bautista, another Honda legend and drag race extraordinaire, snuck up behind Brian and quickly pounces on him. It was a most opportune time for me to snap a photo of these two and capture over 30 years of dedication, trend-setting, and ingenuity within the Honda/Acura import scene. We should all give some appreciation to both of these guys for all they’ve done!
The Integra has been going through a series of modifications and changes, Currently, the original B18A1 engine has been replaced with a K24A4 CRV engine with an ’04 Civic Si 5-speed transmission, mounted using Hasport DAK2 dual height mount kit with 72A urethane and solid rear mount. A Jackson Racing Civic Si supercharger delivers additional boost while a Hondata K Pro controls fuel and ignition timing. Currently, the engine delivers a modest 280 whp, but future plans call for a Jackson Racing K-series racing supercharger kit with Rotrex supercharger and K-Tuned big tube header. The target is 400 to 450 HP with this setup.
Perhaps one of the cleanest engine bays at this year’s event belonged to this ’01 Honda S2000 owned by Tho Ly, with over 500 whp on tap. The engine bay was stripped of every unnecessary part, and everything was polished to a high luster including the custom center-positioned catch can.
This car is equipped with a laundry list of rare and hard-to-find parts. Tho executed the perfect build in both the performance and visuals department. An Amuse Legalo body kit was purchased and sprayed in Aspen Pearl White, but not before the entire wiring harness was tucked and the engine bay shaved to remove the factory ABS, and unwanted holes to provide this insanely clean appearance.
A Honda N600 is a rare sight to see, but to see one with a motorcycle engine precariously sitting inside the engine bay had the Eibach crowds in a state of frenzy. Vehicle owner Dean Williams purchased the ’72 N600 in 2011; he previously owned one during his college years.
“I always loved the uniqueness this Honda had to offer,” says Williams.
He decided to take things to the next level when he powered the N600 with a 782 cc 16v DOHC V4 engine from a ’98 Honda Interceptor (VFR800). The new powerplant bumps horsepower to 110, which might not seem like a lot, but when the vehicle curb weight is factored in — a scant 1,440 pounds — you’ll come to appreciate the new power-to-weight ratio this vehicle can deliver.
With 13.11 pounds per horsepower to cart around, this N600 has a better power-to-weight ratio in comparison to a number of current-year sports cars sold on the market today.
The suspension, along with other miscellaneous parts, wes grafted onto the vehicle like a science project. The suspension was pulled from a first-gen Mazda Miata and narrowed 9.5-inches. The front and rear bumpers are ’67/’68 Camaro bumpers; these have been narrowed as well. Seats were donated from a first-generation Polaris RZR and the rear end is a narrowed Ford 7.5-inch housing deemed perfectly acceptable to handle the horsepower.
Williams integrated a set of custom paddle shifters to sit directly behind the steering wheel, then cleverly customized the original Interceptor tachometer and speedo to look factory within the gauge cluster.
We were sad to learn that the N600 — which has been the recipient of hundreds of hours of Williams’ blood, sweat and tears — will be up for sale in the upcoming weeks. For more information on the build (41 pages of information) or to inquire about purchasing the N600, check out this link.
Throughout the day, a steady stream of spectators hovered around Ryan Blair’s Rio Yellow AP2 S2000. The owner performed a full RHD conversion immediately upon purchase, then followed things up with a Cusco 6-point roll bar painted in a custom green hue. A set of Buddy Club N+ coilovers and SPC adjustable camber arms allows this S2K to tightly hug the tarmac.
Blair’s S2K wears a set of CCW LM5T wheels wrapped in Falken Azenis 615K tires, and covered in a green hue to match his roll cage. The front wheels are 17×10.5-inch, and use +20 offset with a 4-inch lip. The rear wheels use the same dimensions, but offset has been adjusted to +10 and the lip stands at 4.5-inch.
Special recognition belongs to this EG Civic from Texas. The saying “everything is bigger in Texas” definitely held true when it came to the tire fitment on this ride. The Maxxis RC-1 R compound tires were wrapped around a set of Volk TE37’s and tightly shoehorned under the fender flares. Less is more on the inside as indicated by the Spartan interior. An AIM gauge cluster, Mugen steering wheel and a custom roll cage were the only creature comforts this Civic had to offer. Under the hood, this K-powered beast sports a Precision turbocharger mated to a custom equal length exhaust manifold and a slew of Hybrid Racing products.
The Eibach meet was a true international affair as indicated by the presence of enthusiasts from across the globe including Japan. J’s Racing president Hisaaki Murakami was on hand to sign autographs. J’s Racing distributors Pit Crew Motorsports teamed up with Murakami-san at the event to showcase their newest products.
Spoon Sports USA came to the event packing a full onslaught of merchandise, engine displays and some of their top race/show cars. Among the vehicles was the infamous Super Lap Battle x Global Time Attack FF Unlimited Class record-holding Honda Civic Type R.
Piloted by Formula Drift driver Dai Yoshihara, this car reset the long-standing FWD record held by Chris Rado with a blazing lap time of 1:45.585. Originally built in Japan by Spoon Sport engineers, this FD2 weighs in at a scant 2,290 pounds, while pounding the ground with an estimated 400 wheel horsepower. Although Dai wasn’t present at the event, the Civic still displayed battle scars from its historical 2015 SLB X GTA run – just check out the external wastegate dump-tube covering the windshield with carbon buildup. We like to think of it as a badge of honor!
Sportcar Motion’s ’92 K20 powered Civic was on display front-and-center during the weekend’s festivities. Equipped with a Garrett GTX-3582R turbocharger, Golden Eagle sleeves, intake manifold, Sportcar Motion custom port and polish head, JE 11.5 to 1 pistons, and Turbosmart 45 Hypergate wastegate, this four-door sedan pumps out stout numbers — 708 horsepower and 506 pound-feet of torque at 29 PSI of boost.
“I usually drive this Honda to and from town but it also serves as our company Time Attack car,” says Sportcar Motion president Loi Song.
“We are also using PCI spherical bushings throughout the entire suspension, which might seem harsh for street driving, but the Fortune Auto adjustable two-way coilovers with external reservoirs really help tame an otherwise rough ride.”
As the Eibach Meet continues to grow, we look forward to seeing what’s in store for next year’s festivities. If you missed attending this record-setting event, be sure to check it out next year as it promises to be bigger and better!