In the world of Honda tuning Spoon Sports has earned a reputation for offering the highest form of service and products. Not an easy thing, as Honda already builds its engines to very high standards. Think of the B18 or K20 units from Civic and Integra Type Rs and the F20/22C from the S2000 that push out well over 100 hp per liter. How can you possibly improve on this without compromising longevity and usability? We've all heard stories of people bolting on pod filters and large bore exhausts to their Integras and S2000s in the pursuit of power gains when, in actual fact, they were achieving the exact opposite. You certainly cannot disrupt the fine-tuning and precise balance between intake and exhaust on high-compression naturally aspirated engines. And it's precisely this way of thinking that has pushed Spoon to further fine-tune these powerplants, rather than "disturb" their natural balance.
275hp @8,600 rpmAs soon as we heard that Spoon and Type One had just finished putting together their latest demo car we headed straight to their workshop in Tokyo. We were greeted by Mr. Ichishima who immediately got down to business and took us up a few floors of Spoon's HQ where the engine building area is located. We were allowed to snap away and follow the build process of an F20C motor, which was being carefully assembled by Naoki Yoshida, the head of the engineering department. Yoshida-san showed us a few interesting parts like F20C and K20 dry-sump kits, prototype exhaust manifolds, finely polished heads and talked us through some of the parts and work Spoon does. We were shown where the Spoon suspension kits are assembled and how the fine attention to detail the company is known for even extends to careful matching of springs according to their weight so that a full four-damper kit offers the best performance and feel when used on a customer's car. You will only find this kind of attention to detail on race cars.
A short drive from Spoon HQ is the Type-One workshop, a two story building where Spoon cars are built, kept and looked after. We were taken upstairs to the main work area where "our car" was waiting for us. Sitting in a dark corner of the shop the new S2000 demo car greets us with its impossibly purposeful looks. Spoon has never done anything like this, they have always preferred to stick to the simpler side of tuning and have until now never given much attention to over-the-top body kits. But their latest effort is simply stunning-a true testament to the quality and style of their work. This S2000 creates such a visual impact it takes the mind a few minutes to digest all the details and lines of the race car-like body kit. This kit has been made up to give customers of Spoon a chance to bring the company's race pedigree to the street. It all begins with the aggressive front bumper straight from the Super Taikyu S2000 race car, which features a large central air intake to bring cooling air to the radiator, while a cold air intake brings a fresh breeze to the airbox thanks to the carbon air-guide inside the engine room. Large foglight reflectors take center stage in the whole bumper assembly, while on the side are small intakes to channel air to the front brakes.
Naoki Yoshida, head engineer...
Naoki Yoshida, head engineer for Spoon, took time out of his busy schedule to show us what's involved in building an F20/22C engine.
Complementing the aggressive bumper is the vented hood, which helps extract hot air from the engine bay thanks to its gill-like air outlets. The front fenders marginally widen the car, but it's their design that significantly alters the S2000 presence. Their Super-GT-like open section on the door side is the selling point of this kit, as is the highly visible higher fender line, which works its way toward the rearview mirrors. The rear fenders are widened in a more crude fashion with riveted over-fenders. The rear bumper features a prolonged profile with a somewhat angular design feel and has been combined with two large square openings on either side which work hand in hand with the carbon lower diffuser to expel air from under the car. A large GT-style wing finishes off the rear section of the car. However, it's the Spoon coupe roof that plays a big part in completing the look of the new kit. Closing up the S2000 with the shell-like cover totally transforms its profile and brings it one step closer to the Super Taikyu car, which uses the exact same part. A set of 17-inch matte-bronze Volk Racing wheels contrast the pure-white body perfectly and, shod with sticky Bridgestone Potenza RE-01Rs, this S2000 has plenty of grip to play with.