May, 2024
Daniel Todd | 26 | Charlotte, NC

My previous car was a 2004 Lexus IS300. I miss that car almost daily, although the Civic has been an incredible replacement. I definitely plan to get another IS300 sometime in the near future, but the Civic is going nowhere. The Civic was actually my dad's car; 10th gen Civics weren't really on my radar much before he got one. After driving it a few times, I fell in love, and it was a no-brainer when he was ready to move on. Not to mention, I was already drooling at all the aftermarket options available and the sheer potential of the platform. It is very difficult for me to resist modifying a car, especially knowing how much potential the car has. There is this intimate connection that you get with car where you can just feel everything working together, or not working together, and you get a very clear idea of what you'd like to change/improve. This car has been like an addiction for me. Every little modification I make just continues to keep that fire burning. It's just so good! Maybe one day I'll be satisfied, but probably not. I've always told myself that as long as I stay under MSRP of a Type R with the MSRP of this car plus mods, I'm okay...but we're getting closer and closer to that point.

In my mind, this car is pretty close to perfect for a reliable daily driver that I don't have to worry too much about. It's a base model Civic (well, a Sport to be exact), so I don't worry about dents, door dings, scratches, etc., like I would with an Si or R. Not that I don't care about the car; it just doesn't bother me all that much anymore, especially as the miles creep up there (almost at 100k, wild). I regularly average 28-30mpg and I drive this car HARD. It does take premium fuel, but the fun factor is well worth it. It's a hatchback so I can fit pretty much anything in it (entire drum sets, desks, wheels/tires, 2x4s, etc.) I also love the styling of the 10th gen Civics. The 11th gens have grown on me, but something about the sharp lines and aggressive styling on the 10th gens just gets me - when they're done right, at least. The 6-speed transmission is amazing and makes every drive enjoyable. The car feels like it's on rails and is just glued to the road. I have been able to throw this thing around to the point where I'm straight up dumbfounded that the car let me do it. I could probably ramble on, but you get it: the car is incredible, and I can't get enough of it. It makes 5 hour drives comfortable and enjoyable while also being able to absolutely tear up corners and keep up with R's on the Tail of the Dragon. Now, the negatives of that particular car are a few, but one is significant. There are a few small gripes I have about the OEM color radio being subpar, or the steering being too light/touchy, but my only real major complaint about the hatch is the rods. It made me so sad when I learned that the FK7/L15BA has the weakest rods of all of the L15 motors. Of course, there has been success pushing a stock L15BA bottom end well north of 300whp/300tq (looking at you, MetalKnightCivicHB), but it's a huge gamble. I'd rather not have to put a built bottom end in this car, but if that day comes, I know that at least TSP has my back.

KTuner V2
MAP Front Pipe
MAP Race Catback
SiriMoto N1 CMC w/ Stainless Line
KTuned Street Coilovers
SuperPro Front LCA w/ Poly Bushings
Torque Solution RMM
FK8 Shifter w/ Acuity Upgrades
Conti DWS06+ 265/35

FKX Racing Front Grille
Blitz Rep Front Lip
Aeroflow Dynamics Front Splitter
Suma Performance Sequential Side Markers
Black LED Fogs
eBay Mugen Rep Tails
eBay Rear LED Reflectors
eBay Hatch Spoiler 

BattleAero Chassis Mounted Splitter Mounts
Custom 1/2" Birch Plywood Splitter
3D Printed Duckbill (in progress)
Vargas GC+ Turbo
Maybe Morimoto V2 Headlights

Which modification is my favorite? That's a tough question to answer because there's just so many good ones. I'm stuck between the KTuner, PRL intake, and my wheels. I think the KTuner provides the biggest improvement overall, but hearing the turbo noises through the PRL intake gets me every time and those gloss black 57DR's just absolutely change the look of the car. As for my plans..ugh, so many. I literally can't stop, and it's a problem (this is a call for help; car modding addiction is a real epidemic haha). On a serious note, I would like to get to a good "stopping point" before long so I can shift over to another project and not pass the point of no return on this car. I mentioned the weaker rods earlier: those pretty much dictate the car's fate. I want to make as much power as I can without building a motor because I'd rather put that money into something else. However, there's a good chance that if I go down the rabbit hole of big(ish) turbo and end up blowing a motor, I'll be tempted to rebuild and push even harder. 

That being said, my planned modifications are a custom chassis-mounted front splitter (using BattleAero brackets and 1/2" birch plywood), the Wunderladen BBK, a 3D-printed duckbill spoiler concept I've been working on, and then probably the whole turbo thing, which would be Vargas GC+, TSP Head Studs, 27WON TIP, and either a whole new 27WON FMIC or some upgraded charge pipes to pair with my current FMIC. Maybe even ethanol but that is certainly knocking on the door of a TSP L15B7 Shortblock, lol. Like I mentioned earlier, this car is just so good and it gets better with every single mod I do. I've done every modification myself. The only areas I haven't really gotten into are building motors and transmissions, but they're certainly on the to-do list eventually. I am a Mechanical Engineer so tinkering comes naturally to me, but I've also been broke as **** most of my life (as a result of modifying cars, of course) so paying for labor is not even a question. Why pay for labor when that money can go straight into other parts...?


There are so many good memories with this car that it's hard to pick just one. Recently though, it has definitely been the CivicX+ Wake the Dragon event this past April. Meeting so many cool people within the CivicX+ community was so awesome and seeing/feeling all of these modifications come together on some crazy hairpin turns makes it all that much more worth it. Can't wait for next year! Also, shoutout TSP for supporting and making it that much more fun, it was great meeting and cruising with y'all! I haven't really had bad memories with this car, but diagnosing bad injectors was not fun. I thought I was going to have to replace a head gasket or something. Also, don't take your bumper off and proceed to drive through pouring rain with a PRL CAI (even with a hydro shield). Water hit my MAF sensor and put the car in limp mode going 80mph. Definitely thought I popped a motor... but one dried MAF sensor later and I was back ripping on this thing. Whenever the day comes where the motor becomes an expensive paperweight, that will certainly be my new least favorite memory...
I've been very lucky to not really have any setbacks with this car. It has been everything I've wanted & more and hasn't left me stranded or in a bad spot (well, financially it has if that hasn't been apparent enough, lol). I'm really looking forward to seeing what else this project has in store for me. Overall, my FK7 has been nothing short of amazing. I've made so many good memories and friends with this car and will continue to make many more. I have no regrets with this build and am super excited to continue it. You may see me lurking around the CivicX forums, give me a shout @JustAHatchback!

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