“I’ve said it time & time again: Car manufacturers 20-30 years ago… they took chances. They made these oddball cars like the CRX or the Del Sol that were more for the driver and NOT for the purpose.
The 80’s & 90s stand out to me… because it was more about the drive. It was more about style… and what you have. It was standing out from the crowd.
It’s been a few years now, but a buddy of mine & I were driving around, and we were just looking at cars in car lots. And we drove through an Infinity dealership. Every single new car on that lot was either gray, white, or black. There is no other colors. Who??? Like….We have color TVs for a reason!”
-John Moore / Jacksonville, FL
This is John Moore’s 1988 Honda CRX HF, powered by a K20A2 from an RSX Type-S. And his words above are just a little glimpse into his mindset… a mindset that a lot of us tuners, drivers, and enthusiasts feel at our core.
It’s true: The automotive landscape has changed. And the rate at which it’s changed… is nothing compared to the rate that it’s changing now. Technological innovations, combined with cost-cutting, combines with safety requirements, combined with changing consumer demands is shuffling all the papers here. We don’t know where exactly is gonna go, but we know it’s going there fast. And we know it’s not good for expressive sports cars.
Ford isn’t making any cars/sedans for the US anymore, except for the Mustang. GM looks like they’re following that path… although not quite as extremely. Electric engines are forcing the internal combustion engine to witness their own fate. On the same token though, electric engines are also changing everything we thought we knew about performance.
Manufacturers are cutting costs & closing facilities, while raising sticker prices. New cars are priced higher than ever… absurdly high for someone who hasn’t been in the market for a while. Yet new cars are competing for a tight spot with more ‘monthly charges’ than we’ve ever seen in our lives.
Cars have already turned into full-on appliances. Rolling Bluetooth devices… save for a few exceptions. Fat cars for fat consumers.
And the tragedy is: Today’s commuters are not willing to make any sacrifices to their comforts or conveniences… for the sake of memorable experiences and/or enjoyment. And today’s manufactures aren’t willing to risk it & tell these slugs to go pound sand… except maybe for Mopar. So we’ve lowered the curve to meet the needs of the uninspired. And began to spin-off lazy things, as exciting things. Started to market convenience as performance. They don’t care if it’s lies… so long as it’s what they want to hear.
And if you think the appliancing of vehicles has peaked-out, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet. Less variety, and more repurposed chassis… that’s what you can expect to see domino into the near future.
I’m not sure how to wrap this up. I’m not sure where the pretty bow went. And admittedly – everything I just wrote, was written in generalities. Please understand that. I know people with SUVs, crossovers, and minivans who are not lazy. They’re just busy!! Busy with parenting, work, errands, recitals… all of the above. I get it! I’m not speaking on an individual basis, but I AM speaking on a blanket truth.
But just because the masses go one way… doesn’t mean you need to follow. Know your True North. Don’t forget who you are. If driving matters to you… it’s usually part of a bigger set of character traits. It means that THINGS matter to you. SENSES matter. DETAILS matter. And a sense of FREEDOM & EXPLORATION… matters. It means that you’re in touch with these types of things. So yes, GO OUT OF YOUR WAY… and SPEND YOUR MONEY & EFFORT to support the brands who are led by passion. Car culture and otherwise. Buy what moves you… even if it doesn’t always make perfect sense. And remember that each time we make a purchase, we cast our own personal vote on what’s important… and how we want this world to be.
John Moore is absolutely right: The most memorable cars & trucks throughout history, are usually the one’s that fall at the edges of the spectrum. Same with people.
Catch up with John on Facebook under John Moore. And/or on Instagram @slo88crx.
And if you’ve got a few minutes to kill, go watch our behind-the-scenes video with John on our S3 Magazine Youtube channel.
1988 HONDA CRX HF
Superior Blue Metallic
Fiber Images JDM style carbon hood
Specialty Carbon – carbon fiber fenders
EDM SI rear spoiler
’90-’91 CRX taillights
XENON front bumper cap
PCI side skirts
Konig Dekagrams in 15×7.5 +35 – matte black
Federal RSRR – 225/45/15
90-93 Integra brakes front & rear
PowerStop slotted/drilled rotors
EBC Green Stuff brake pads
Goodrich stainless brake lines
KTuned traction bar
Function Form type-2 coilovers
Skunk2 front & rear camber kit
ST Suspension 22mm sway bars front & rear
All-In Fab rear lower control arms
Sparco sprint driver seat
PCI seat brackets
Auto Power roll bar
Full ’88 SI interior
CRX SIR instrument cluster
Tegiwa rubber dash insert
OEM radio and equalizer
CTR shift knob
Checkered sports hub boss
Momo mod.07 steering wheel
6-speed LSD transmission
Skunk2 alpha header
Innovative k-swap mounts
Custom driver side mount
Stage6 custom center-feed intake manifold
Wilson 74mm throttle body
Wire-word milspec engine harness
Rywire conversion harness
BDL industries fuel rail
Ktuned fuel pressure regulator
Ktuned a/c and p/s delete
Ktuned cable stay bracket
Ktuned shift cable bushings
Hush Performance cable-to-hydro conversion
Kacepts shifter box mount plate
Skunk2 alpha half size radiator
Custom 4″ intake with velocity stack
3″ mandrel bent stainless exhaust
Vibrant Performance 3″ ultra quiet resonator
All-In Fab brake booster delete
Wilwood brake master cylinder
Text by Wooley Photos by Jesuel Rivera