The Acura Integra has long been one of the more favorable platforms for most of the staff here at Modified Mag. In fact, we would go so far as to say it is one of the best, if not THE best FWD platforms on the market that combines the total package of speed, handling, and overall visual appeal. Often overlooked, however, is the DA Integra, which has been historically and continuously dismissed by its newer and more mainstream DC2 brethren. After all, the venerable DA platform is not really old enough to be truly old school; we leave that term generally reserved for cars with at least a few more years of age under the proverbial belt. In addition, it lacks the aftermarket support that would promote the type of modernization that could be provided along the lines of an older Nissan s-chassis, for example.
Doug Wasil, on the other hand, takes these notions and scoffs at them, and brings forth a mixture of old school and new school and combines it in a package that we just couldn’t resist. The DA Integra that presently graces the pages of Modified may just be one of the meanest and cleanest we’ve ever laid eyes on! The story only ends there, however, and although the outcome is nothing less than spectacular, in true Batman Begins fashion, we are going back to the humble beginnings to find out how this path to greatness occurred.
It all started out in a cornfield in Ohio. The car was just sitting there, one attempted break-in under its belt, with no motor and no tranny underneath the shell. Brian Cain, the original builder of the car, was with three friends at a local Steak-n-Shake restaurant talking shop. Brian had always liked the DA style, and as a longtime Honda fan was discussing whether or not anyone had ever done a K-swap into the DA ‘teg. After an extended discussion and a bit more research, the answer was a resounding negative, and thus it was decided that this o-so-lonely DA sitting in the middle of a cornfield would indeed rise again.
Starting in May of 2006 with the most integral components first, Brian went with a K20A2, DC 4-1 race header, custom K20 mounts with billet sections from Hasport, a Karcepts throttle body adapter plate, and an RBC intake manifold. With the motor purchased and being prepped for installation, Brian also decided that not only would one of the first K-swapped DA ‘tegs have a super clean overall look, it would also be RHD and be that much better. It just so happened that one of Brian’s good friends happened to have a RHD DA clip on hand, and thus work began on cutting and welding the firewall in properly. Meanwhile, the work on integrating the complete DC Integra chassis harness was going slowly but surely, and eventually every sensor and light in the cluster was functional. Fueling the K20A2 would then be up to a Walbro 255lph pump, with complimentary black 6AN lines and fittings along with a Golden Eagle Mfg. fuel rail and Earl’s filter. A short ram intake and stainless mesh filter was added to help the engine breathe, while a Tanabe Super Hyper Medallion exhaust expelled burnt exhaust gases. The task of making everything sing was given to a Hondata K-Pro ECU.
Putting power to the pavement was something that certainly had to be addressed, and Brian found it necessary to convert the clutch to a hydraulic pedal and master cylinder while utilizing RSX base axles and a 6 speed transmission for everything to function as desired. Keeping the car planted in the corners was also a mandatory part of the build, and Function Form Type II coilovers and rear lower control arms were added. The package was finished off with Sprint Hart SPF wheels wrapped in Dunlop Direzza rubber and finished in Kandy Grape to contrast with the striking gold exterior. That striking finish certainly did not come easy, however, as Eddie Wright of Fast Eddie’s Auto Salon sprayed the nearly flawless gold paint on in multiple layers only after countless hours of prep work. Also on the outside some subtle enhancements in the form of JDM lighting, molding, and a JDM XSi lip really added to the exterior detail. On the inside a set of Recaro SRD Evo IV seats and a Vintage Abnarth steering wheel really steal the show and compliment the black suede panels quite well. Keeping with the JDM theme, a DC2 ITR cluster with a molded bezel was installed, along with all JDM switches, buttons, and even JDM power windows.