Monday, November 30, 2009

2003 Acura Rsx S Side View
This is more than a car, it's a four-wheeled illustration of the American Dream. If someone works hard, they can achieve their goals. And if someone wants their car painted Heineken metallic green-then adds blue, red and candy purple highlights-well, by golly, it's a free country.
2003 Acura Rsx S Main Shot
BK, 24, works hard, holding down two jobs in Charlotte, NC (restaurant manager/chef and grocery stock associate), toiling seven days a week. Full name Byung Kook Choi, BK always wanted an Acura RSX. It was his dream car while in junior high around 2002. After graduating, he went to a showroom and put money down and got this '03 RSX Type-S, stuffed with the K20A2 engine, pearl-white from the factory.
2003 Acura Rsx S Interior Shot
Before he got too involved with the engine, BK decided to augment the looks with a J's Racing Type S body kit. This consists of a front bumper, side skirts, a carbon fiber rear diffuser and a Type V carbon fiber hood. Further aerodynamic appendages include front canards with winglets, a front under panel, trunk lid and a GT rear wing-all fashioned from carbon fiber. For a final aesthetic flourish, BK went for Ings wide fenders and lit the JDM DC5 headlights with Ignited HID 8,500K bulbs, then got the whole shebang painted in Heineken green.
2003 Acura Rsx S Bride Racing Seats
It was another friend who first suggested this hue. BK mulled it over for a couple of weeks then spoke to his paint guy, who assured him that it would look great. "I've never seen another RSX painted like it," says BK. It's doubtful anyone has.
2003 Acura Rsx S Engine Shot
A Hondata K-Pro ECU (tuned by RLZ Engineering of North Carolina) keeps another hand on the reins, choreographing a BDL fuel rail, RC 650cc/min injectors and NGK Iridium spark plugs for the internal combustion tango. With the dance in full swing, BK's engine now makes a claimed 298 hp at 7,800 rpm and 236 lb-ft of torque at a peaky 6,800 rpm. This is still with the stock compression ratio of 11:1.
2003 Acura Rsx S Bov Shot
A well-regarded upgrade to Honda's K-series engines is the fitting of IPS K2 camshafts and valve springs, so BK wasn't about to fly in the face of conventional wisdom here. He also hooked up an HKS muffler, three-inch KTeller exhaust and piping, and a three-inch test pipe called . . . what was that name again? Ah yes, Unforgettable. Before we forget, BK added a Mishimoto aluminum radiator, removed the ABS, air conditioning and power steering apparatus, then did a full wire tuck.
2003 Acura Rsx S Front View
Phase three of the build focused on the suspension, with Tein Mono Flex adjustable coilovers gracing all four corners, augmented by Function7 billet lower control arms, Progress rear anti-roll bar and tie bars, plus Ingalls camber kits at the rear. Because it's easier to get a great setup on a rigid-bodied car than one flexing this way and that (this car is tuned to be road-friendly because BK drives to a lot of shows, even going as far as Toronto), BK installed a J's Racing strut brace up front, a Next Miracle X Bar out back and Cusco carbon fiber side bars. These helpful additions complement the main stiffening event: a Cusco six-point roll cage finished in classic Cusco blue, to go nicely with the green paint. This cage was originally made for the DC5 Type R, which doesn't have a sunroof, so there was a little cutting and welding needed to make it fit right.
2003 Acura Rsx S Header Shot
If BK gets excited every time he adds an aftermarket part, he must have been beside himself when he obtained a set of ten-spoke, 18-inch Volk CE28N Time Attack edition wheels, finished in white and with a +35mm offset. He shod them with Dunlop Direzza DZ101 235/40 rubber and bolted them (with Project Kics Neo Chro titanium lug nuts) in front of brake calipers that have been powder-coated in dark candy purple. "They used to be red," says BK, "but I wanted something different." Okay. Concentrating on the stopping hardware for a second, it's an Endless big brake kit with six-piston calipers and rotors out front, stock single-pot calipers and Powerslot rotors in the rear, Endless pads, and Endless stainless steel lines.
2003 Acura Rsx S Spoon Sports Brace Shot
JDM: these are three little letters BK took to heart. He converted the car to right-hand drive. "This was the toughest time," he says. The dash is an authentic JDM DC5 Type R model, complete with center console and shift boot. The pedals are from an Integra Type R; the steering wheel is a 350mm Personal Neo Grinta; heck, even the windshield is JDM (courtesy of Edmun Laurea from Opak Racing).


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