The Calm Before: Kei Miura’s Pandem Civic

It is by pure chance that you are seeing this feature of Kei Miura’s very own EG6 Honda Civic SiR.

I love it when a story like this just happens to materialize, it’s so ‘Japan’ with the unexpected occurring a little bit more often than most other places.

A few days after Tokyo Auto Salon 2018 ended, I was at Trust’s HQ to shoot a couple of its show cars: the soon-to-be-2,000hp Patrol, which you’ve already seen last month, and an R34 GT-R project built in collaboration with GT-R Magazine on, which you will see – hopefully – next week. Trust’s facility is pretty big, with separate buildings and garages dotted around the premises. It was in one of these that I unexpectedly found the Civic.

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The car that I regretted not taking a closer look at, at the show itself, was right there in front of me. It’s likely that I would have shot it later in the year during a much overdue visit to the TRA Kyoto shop, but I was not going to pass up the opportunity to point my camera at it right there and then. The reason for it being at Trust was that the alternator had failed and Miura-san simply didn’t have the time to get it fixed before heading back home.

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The story of this car starts a few days prior to the show, a typical scenario for most individuals that prepare and build cars for big events. Miura finished the morning he was supposed to drive the car into the venue, with the paint done the day prior. That’s all well and good, until you look at Google Maps and figure out that Kyoto is about a seven-hour drive from the Makuhari Messe exhibition centre in Chiba Prefecture. But Miura managed it, and got the Civic there in one piece.

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Now to the car itself. I had the über-cool guys at Trust pull it out and drive it around the back of the main building, which is pretty much the same location that Sean and I teamed up at five years ago to immortalise the VR38-powered BenSopra 380SX.

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The simple act of moving it entailed pulling out a massive booster as the battery had been drained, but that wasn’t really an issue. In a few minutes the car was positioned; finally I had a moment to take it all in.

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This, of course, isn’t the first time I’ve seen the EG Pandem kit in all its aggressive beauty. In my JDM Hunt post from the 2017 SEMA Show, I stopped to take in the details of a beautifully built EG sporting the same aero conversion. But seeing Miura’s own car before me, it just all felt so authentic – this is his own vision for the hatchback after all.

There is talk of this car becoming the evolution of Miura’s old EF Civic, or rather the revolution. It’s still very much up in the air, but the idea is there, using the Pandem kit to boost handling thanks to a widened track, and going a little silly on the engine side of things with some forced induction.

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It’s almost going against what Kanjo racers are all about, but isn’t the whole point of the aftermarket world to keep pushing the envelope? For now, the car remains very much in stock form mechanically, though. You’ll notice there’s a front-mounted intercooler hiding behind the bumper, but currently that’s just for looks – a hint for TAS show-goers that the Honda will – eventually – have some surprises up its sleeve. I really hope it materialises as it would make for a pretty epic little car.

Which brings us to the overall feel of the car, and boy does it work well. Is it the fact that the EG is a perfect candidate for an overfender transformation? Is it that Miura’s decision to do a very simple white-on-white scheme with black details as contrast the perfect execution? A bit of both really, I feel. From the wider front bumper, onto the front flares and the way the time attack-inspired front lip supports the boxed off canards – it’s a good look.

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The rear is even more in-your-face, the flared fender additions cutting diagonally across the three-quarter panels before tucking up nicely around the rear bumper corners with a little finisher piece that just adds enough continuity to the conversion. Oh, and we love the pea-shooter exhaust.

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What really enhances the package, however, are these, errr… what to call them? Roof spoiler extensions? Maybe rear roof canards? I’m not quite sure, but they do all sorts of nice things to the look of the car, and I love how they are more raked than the main spoiler portion itself. But there’s a reason for all of this, which I’ll get into when we look at the engine.

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The testing officer at the local shaken center would probably die laughing if he saw this car rock up with the canard package it currently runs, but I doubt Miura cares. This is what he envisioned his EG Kanjo racer to look like, and it’s what he’s created. Pedestrian safety never really came into it.

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Even from that first shoot I did with Miura’s 6666 Customs S13 Silvia many years ago, I’ve always loved how he integrates a NASCAR-style window net. Rather than running a Simpson one, however, he’s now making his own sporting the Pandem brand name and the ‘OK’ hand logo. This logo is a reinterpretation of the ‘Safety Drive’ logo of the Okamoto Rubber Company. Rubber as in condoms, not tires.

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Swing open the driver’s door and you are welcomed by a beautifully bare cabin. There’s only one seat present, again is a Pandem item, a fitting theme seeing what the car will eventually be built to do.

Pandem branding extends to the harness as well as the door pull which is made from the same weaved nylon strap as the belts.

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Seeing as the extended steering boss and the quick-release hub that’s stacked on top has relocated the Nardi wheel quite a bit further back than the factory position, the seat mount too has been set back a little to allow for an optimal driving position. Likewise, the shifter has been repositioned through a height-adjustable adaptor which looks both wonderfully complex and cool at the same time.

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The gutting of the cabin must have helped shave quite a bit of weight; everything except for the dash has gone – the trim, seats, carpet and door cards.

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Back in the trunk, where a spare wheel used to live, now sits a single compressor and air tank combo. These power the air cups that sit on top of the Pandem coilovers, which allow the car to be dumped to the ground, pretty much as you see it in these pictures.

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This tucked look was obviously preferred to a more aggressive offset on the RAYS Volk Racing TE37Vs that the car sits on, which is almost refreshing. This may all be due to the fact that Miura is trying to get the best out of the handling, as there’s talk of him taking the Honda to Germany for a hill climb event later this year.

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Now those front canards and the roof spoiler extensions begin to make sense, right?

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Contrary to what other media outlets have reported, there is no turbo setup under the hood. As I mentioned, the intention is there, but there was just not enough time to sprinkle a little dose of forced induction on the VTEC unit before TAS.

If the car makes it to Germany, it will likely trade its factory-fitted B16A and 5-speed gearbox for a turbocharged 2.0L motor and Quaife sequential 6-speed transmission to help send something in the region of 400hp to the front wheels.

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So that’s where we leave things with Miura’s Pandem EG for now. The next time we see it, it will hopefully be pulling massive front-wheel drive burnouts and machine-gunning through the sequential box on the streets of Kyoto. Now that would be fun.

Dino Dalle Carbonare
Instagram: speedhunters_dino
dino@speedhunters.com

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52 comments

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1

I love this style of spoiler where it's like an extension of the car.

2

I'm surprised to see a sound system in a car that seems to be built for racing?

3
Richard Clayderman

It's an active noise reduction system to cancel out the "bwaah".

Author4
Dino Dalle Carbonare

That made me laugh :D

5

really good looking car, looks simplistic and functional. raised ride height wouldn't go astray.
It's one of the cars from TAS i actually wanted to see more photos of.

Author6
Dino Dalle Carbonare

The simple white approach worked very well

7

Nice parachute on the roof.

8

I'm definitely a fan of the widebody itself but not so much the aero pieces. Cosmetically they look good but as a time attack driver myself I know they wouldn't do squat.

9

Those front canards really bug me. They start off wide, then narrow down to like an inch from the body. All thats gonna do is cause a lot of drag and turbulence. The rear wingy thingys might actually be effective if the element is a proper design, which it may be.

Author10
Dino Dalle Carbonare

Agreed

11
Anthony Robitaille

The engine is NA, and there is a front mount intercooler.... nice...

12

You should read the articles.

Author13
Dino Dalle Carbonare

LOL

14

Not usually a fan of the bolt-on fender craze (wow, my phone tried correcting that to gender), I actually really like this kit. Chalk it up with his S13 and ZN6 kits.

Author15
Dino Dalle Carbonare

I had weird images pop up in my mind after wondering what a car with bolt-on genders would look like haha

16

you guys are gonna have to make Khyzyl go outside his element...

17

K20C1 is all i'm seeing to go in place of the b series

18

Considering how long the EG has been around, you've really got to do a whole lot more than this to stand out. Esp since this is pretty copy/paste. White on white is always nice though.
PS- nice mirrors bro

19

tbh I want see this lapping on Battle Evome

Author20
Dino Dalle Carbonare

Battle Evome is no more though...

21

This exhaust in relation to the bodykit XD First i thougt it is the stock one ^^ look at that clear interior with that sporty gearshifter and that drving Wheel. I´ll hope he tune his VTEC to the funtcional maximum

22

Guys, who know what sizes of tyres and wheels on this civic?

23

16x7 with 225/45ZR16

24

Typical Japanese built car. Really wild exterior and a rats nest, dirty, almost stock under the hood.

25

Didn't read the post, huh?

26

Where i am from we call that "rice"

27

Sorry Paddy, I have to agree with John K. Such a disappointment when you see show cars that are..... just show cars. Regardless of "future plans". I have a TON of future plans, but I wouldn't showcase an incomplete car, or put a useless FMIC on a car, just cause I will turbo it one day.

28

You're not wrong, but it's a car that's attracted a lot of attention due to who owns it and a lot of people have requested a closer look at it. It's not as if we have a finite amount of space, so it's no harm to share it.

I just don't think John's comment is fair as the car isn't finished, and what he describes certainly isn't typical of the majority of Japanese builds I've seen around the world.

Author29
Dino Dalle Carbonare

Yes you are not wrong, but the intercooler was put there mostly to check clearances with the new bumper. Trust will do the piping from it up towards the engine intake & turbo once they figure out placement. It's a work in progress yes, but it is still a car owned by a special guy and when he says he will get stuff done, he always does!

30

Not usually a fan of Pandem but this makes perfect sense to me. So nice to see the rivets and overfenders and sweet rear wing being used for function. I'd imagine it'll make a pretty potent hill climb car!

Author31
Dino Dalle Carbonare

I'd love to see it participate in the event!

32

I struggle with this stuff. Show cars inspired by functional race cars is just such an odd thing to get your head around and understand someones intentions in doing so. The intercooler for looks was a real strange effort too.

33

I guess the plan is to use the car for track work moving forward though? That would make more sense.

Author34
Dino Dalle Carbonare

Yeah but it's also a way to offer affordable parts to those on a budget. Not everyone can go off and hire Andrew Brilliant to design aero then get it sculpted out of carbon fiber... Miura offers that dream at an affordable price. It's not going to be functional but the look is there...the rest you can tweak yourself

35

What hillclimb event in Germany will he maybe join?
More Infos?
Can you tell us before he's been to Germany? :D

Author36
Dino Dalle Carbonare

Don't worry, if it happens we'll be telling you about it, including refeaturing this car with the power it deserves!

37

I generally like neither hatchbacks nor slamming a car, but in the case of this machine, everything seems to work.

38
Mark Joseph I. Argoso

It looks like something a Blacklist driver will have.

39

Awesome article Dino...My Pandem Civic was the one at SEMA!

Author40
Dino Dalle Carbonare

Thank Philip! How's the project coming along?

41

very kool looking car i got to say i do love the kit but i cant believe this is becoming the new thing to build a show car half finished , that intercooler is like stuffing socks down the front of your trousers

42

I must ask...do women really chase men with bulging, sock-stuffed crotches?
Kinda reeks of a #METOO situation waiting to happen.

Author43
Dino Dalle Carbonare

If was there to check fitment, Trust will build piping around it. I really do get tired of how people just jump to conclusions so quickly. Guys please understand how hard it is to build a car for a show from scratch. Nobody is going to get it 100% complete in one go. The question is, would you like us to NOT cover these cars when they are first shown and wait till they are 100% done? Think about, we can show you something new and fresh when it first appears but tell you it's not quite there yet, OR wait another year or 2, show it to you when it is done and you won't be impressed as you've seen it a million times already. See our predicament here? What do you want us to do?

44

Show 'em

45

Sorry dino im not trying to make you tired and its not your fault. just saying what i think about all show and no go cars , coming from a racing background and building both show winning/magazine cover cars and championship winning race cars i do know just how hard it is to build a car ready to show the world your work and win a race . For me id be a bit ashamed to show this car off in the way it is, under the bonnet which to me is one of the most important jewels of a car is in a state and should have really been addressed first in my eyes , if this was something i built the bonnet would never be open to anyones camera untill it was sorted . You asked to see cars i was building in the past on here and I did offer to show you the cars on the agreement you didn't show the photo untill the cars were finished and you didnt even get back to me so im sure you will carry on doing whatever you want to do and il carry on calling out bullshit when i see it thats why you have the comments section right ? . great photos keep up the good work .

46

Tastefully done. Not my taste, but I can definitely appreciate it.

It doesn't hurt when he starts with a great canvas like the EG (one of Honda's best-looking models) or the RX-7.
The only place where I've seen him misstep is the 240/Fairlady Z kit (kinda forced) and the vintage front clip on the 90's Nissans (gimmicky).

Overall, it's good that he uses his resources and capabilities to shake things up!
It's incredibly impressive what he's done with his operation.

47

speedhunters should check out Jordan Cox civic

48

should check this civic...

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49

Wouldn't the photos be his ride height? I was under the assumption air cups can only be driven at low speed to get over speed humps etc. when raised.

50

I wonder about the difficulty involved in putting this kit on an EG sedan instead..hmmm

51

Nice EG,
The bodykit and all it needs now is a little boost

52

Dislike. Some people calling Nakai creations- "crazy japanese slaughtering the perfect shape of narrow 911".

Don't agree, But I'll like to use it opposite- an waste of perfect shape of narrow EG :(
Thats weird, because I dig RWB creations. Rocket Bunny- not so much :/ (with some exceptions- bumper less trend is quite nice)

getting sick with this whole widebody thing :/ its not for every car...

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