ACT clutch

Text by Joe Gustafson   :   Photos by Guy Haynie   :   Issue 43

Honda S2000 widebody

What’s your dream car look like? Maybe it’s brand new… perfect off the showroom floor. Maybe it’s a tuner where all your parts fit perfectly right out the box. Maybe it’s a classic ride, perfectly customized with your skill set + your extensive tool set. I used the word ‘perfect’ in each of those examples. But let’s get one thing straight, ‘perfect’ almost never happens. At least not without a brawl.

lowered S2000 hardtop


This car belongs to Andrew Long. He’s a friend of Guy & Wooley’s, and a mechanic for a dealership… so he knows his way around a car. At purchase, this Honda S2000 was bone stock. And then, life hit. He unexpectedly hydroplaned one rainy night on the way home. The car snapped around (as S2000s tend to do) & ended up in a guard rail.

It was a on odd crash. The frame was not damaged, but the hit took out the front/passenger suspension. It also took out the rear bumper & popped out the rear taillight. But strangely, there was no damage to taillight, nor did it scratch either rear 1/4 panel… which is a miracle. BUUUUT – insurance totaled the car anyway, citing that, “The price of OEM parts were too high on the S2000.”

Other things that can total an S2000 these days? Seats being stolen. The top being ripped. Or an accident that damages both front headlights. Usually a car being totaled-out is the end to every project. It’s also the end to a project ‘beginning’, because who wants to start with a totaled car?

J's Racing S2000

Or… or you can evaluate your options, and potentially seize an opportunity. As cars age a little, they are written off for far less than you’d think – minor bumps & scrapes, slight water damage, tiny fires… like really tiny. But seriously, the chances that your dream car is out there for less is higher than ever.

The insurance company gave Andrew 14.5k for the S2000. He did a little further poking around, and was able to buy back his S2000 from the insurance company for 2 grand. Do the math, and see that he got his wrecked S2K back, plus a check for $12,000. Hmmmm. He put in some mechanical work, and had the car driving again for an additional $600 worth of parts. That left him with $11,400 to make her beautiful!

He took the car to a mutual friend, Bucky at Superstar Customs. Superstar did the bodywork & aero additions, fabbed all-metal rear flares, and painted it Vermillion red (BMW). Andrew went through engine & suspension, and treated the car to some new aftermarket parts.

track S2000

Cut to the the end – and you have a fully custom S2k with a little money to spare! The car may be ‘damaged’ on paper, but it’s no worse for the wear in real life. And that’s where the rubber meets the road. It’s always been the same ol’ story for us enthusiasts… the best results are born from mistakes, regrets, and giant holes that we need to find a way out of. Remember that the next time you find yourself in the thick of a screw-up.


Seibon carbon fiber ‘Mugen style’ hood

ASM front bumper with lip

J’s Racing front fenders

Top1 side diffusers

Custom rear widened all-metal fenders

‘Mugen style’ hardtop (Rockstar Garage)

Seibon carbon deck lid

Seibon GT wing

‘Mugen style’ rear diffuser

Moddiction wing mirrors

Vermillion Red color change


Epsilar springs

XXR 526 – 18×9 +25 front and 18×10.5 +20 rear

235/40/18 BFG G-force sport front

265/40/18 Michelin pilot sport ps2 rear

StopTech drilled/slotted rotors front & rear

Hawk HPS pads front

EBC yellow pads rear