Admit it, one of the first things that pop into your head when you hear ‘Honda’ these days is ‘Spoon’. Such is the grasp of Spoon Sports on the Honda aftermarket that their name has since been associated with imbuing Honda’s economy cars with giant-killing performance. While you perplex your non-car guy friends or relatives on why you’re fussing over installing a utensil for your Civic, allow us to take you around a quick tour of the facilities that play host to all that naturally aspirated magic.
A quick google search, a 30 minute train ride from the heart of Tokyo, and another 30 minute walk through a long alley led us to the headquarters of Spoon Sports. Any diehard fan* of Spoon will know though that the headquarters is mainly for stocking of parts and serves as their main office, and that none of their race cars will be found inside the small building. Another 15 minute stroll down the main road however will lead to all the goodies that Spoon has in store inside the Type One factory.
*I will admit, this is something I learned during the trip itself. Humor me as my feet had to endure another few minutes of walking to Type One. Totally worth it though!
As I walked down the busy street I thought that i’d already missed Type One. A peek through this large glass window told me that I’ve come to the right place though! Parts, valve covers, and even a complete yellow valve-covered K-series motor greeted me as I spent a good few minutes ogling at the engine room from the outside. Soon afterwards the engine builder pointed me around the corner of the building to find the staircase that ascends to the second floor of the shop.
Peeking through said corner was this rather cute Honda N-One, one of the newer Kei-cars that have been released exclusively for Japan. (Don’t fret, as these buggers are available for the rest of the world in 1:64 scale Tomicas!) This particular car has seen some serious modifications such as a cage and a pair of Spoon Monoblock Calipers for the fronts. That external bumper-mounted muffler is a nice touch as well!
Behind the N-One was the aforementioned staircase where, upon rounding it, sat probably the most serious vehicle in Spoon’s arsenal behind the glass door.
Yes, that’s right. Being the only mid-ship 6-cylinder inside Type One, this NSX-R GT was built to commemorate 20 years of Spoon’s existence back in 2008. It was originally built to compete in the Macau Grand Prix of that year, but has since seen more racing events as well as more development!
Opposite the NSX lies this menacing B18C, complete with individual throttle bodies and elongated headers! I would have to admit, this piece alone took 5 minutes worth of my attention. Clearly though, this won’t be going into your grandma’s civic. Judging from the specs of this motor it appears to be destined for an open wheel formula car such as those from Formula Nippon.
Parked on an elevated platform are several racecars that have been fielded by Spoon over the years. Too bad these weren’t on the shop floor during our visit, as we could use a better view of these things!
I’ll let you figure out the conversion to Peso for a pair of these C32 Exhaust Manifolds. I won’t bother myself with typing out six-digit figures just to bring your hopes down anyway.
A couple service bays on the other side of the room tend to a Super Taikyu Honda Fit GK as well as a customer’s S2000, with the famed Spoon EK9 squeezed in between them.
With the Honda
Jazz Fit (because we’re all JDM like that) GK being relatively new to our market, it appears that Spoon has plenty-a-head start when it comes to some parts for it. That’s never a bad thing, since the sooner this car is put through its paces, the more goodies from Spoon become available for this platform!
Given the abundance of EK civics in our country, let alone those with ‘imposing race setups’ courtesy of Spoon products, there’s no mistaking which car among the ones here all those cars have drawn inspiration from. This EK9 hatch was built with serious endurance racing in mind, with regular appearances at Super Taikyu and the 25 hours of Thunderhill, pedigree is something this Type R has plenty of.
Seeing a technician work on this white S2000 makes me admire how well they maintain their work area. All the tools laid out on a rolling bench, a fender sleeve to prevent liquids and dirty hands from touching the paint, and pretty much a shop floor you can eat off of just show how diligent the Japanese can be with their work. Not to mention that yellow valve-covered F20C would speak volumes of what’s probably underneath.
The car at the far end of this photo might seem rather odd, yet it’s actually one of the more interesting cars in the room. A CRZ perhaps?
Well, that’s close, but not exactly. What you see here is a Honda Insight, one of the first hybrid models that Honda released. It’s just that it’s not exactly what you’d call a hybrid anymore with that K20 taking the place of its original lump! The question of this being an in-house Spoon project or just some crazy customer looking to get more out of his hybrid is one thing we cannot answer for sure, but surely someone out in japan ought to spook unsuspecting drivers with this thing!
After going through each car and each motor lying around the second floor, I thanked the people in charge and took my leave. I’ll leave you with this photo just to give you a glimpse of the unsung hero that supports the Spoon Sports crew during their daily errands!