Time to sharpen the Civic right up!
You gotta play to your strengths in life. I tend to rely on my good looks, charm and impressive member, whereas Millsy depends on luck, the sympathy of others, and a fat wallet that buys him rich man's M cars.
And it's much the same for my K24 EP3 Type R in the great MAXERS project car build-off - the cheap 'n' cheerful little underdog must play to its strengths like its life depends on it to beat Millsy's lavish E46 M3. These strengths are handling, light-weight, and incredible Max-a-bility. Today we sharpen the suspension to a vicious, corner-slaying knife edge with the help of Tegiwa Imports and R2 Automotive.
The Yellow Speed Dynamic Pro Sport coilovers are designed for road use, have plenty of adjustability, and, at just £769, are priced to appeal to us more modest Maxers. Indeed, £769 feels like a bit of a bargain - last time I was in Vegas I spent three-times that in one night on sticky-fingered entertainment!
They're height adjustable, and we dropped the Civic by about two inches, immediately boosting its street cred - like when Millsy wears his baseball cap backwards. But, it's the camber adjusting top mounts up front - and the Tegiwa rear camber arms out back - that, with the lower, firmer, more controlled spring and shock combo, have really transformed the little EP3.
You see, while there's no denying the EP3 Type R was a rockin' pocket rocket right from the Honda factory, one little standard detail was a bit odd - the wheel camber. In stock trim, the wheels have a touch of positive camber, which not only looks crap as the wheels poke out at the top, it doesn't do the tyre contact patch any favours, either.
Now, with 2-degrees front and 1.3-degrees rear of negative camber, as dialled in by the R2 Automotive guys on their laser-guided Hunter wheel alignment rig, the Civic gets maximum tyre contact patch as it rolls into the corners.
I'd like to think that I came up with these high-performance settings, but I'm not that clever, so I left it to the R2 Automotive experts to adjust the camber and toe to what they deduced, after some quick questions, to be the best 'fast road set-up' for me - namely, mostly back lane rips and the odd track day. Of course, a full geometry set-up like this is crucial when you update your suspension, but you guys know that, right?
The R2 Automotive team are known for their Honda knowledge (they work on any make and model, mind), built up over more than four years in business in Tilbury, Essex, and many more years before that as passionate modifiers of their own cars. The gallery below is just a snapshot of the sweet customer and personal projects they work on every day.
On my favourite back lanes - bumpy, tight and full of wicked bends (plus a lot of ditches that I'd like to avoid!) - and the Civic feels awesome. The corner turn-in is sharp, accurate and brimming with lateral grip - thanks to the camber - and the body-control and overall stability are next level.
Before, on the stock suspension, through some of the bigger dips at decent speeds, the car felt like it was going to bounce off into the aforementioned ditches, but now it just soaks it all up it its stride; urging me to go yet faster. Naughty little Civic!
I've got the coilovers wound up to about three-quarters maximum rebound stiffness, giving me the body-control I want, but still with enough travel and soak to deal with the monster potholes that litter these Essex roads.
So, I'm well happy with the new Yellow Speed and R2 Automotive upgrades on the Civic, and I'll be shooting a back lane video real soon to show you guys just how extra nippy the new mods are.
Wonder what Millsy's been up to in his opulent M3? Probably matching Gucci luggage and a gold leaf wrap! He really doesn't stand a chance (clenched fist emoji!!).
Video is in! Back lane blasting in the mighty K24 Type R!