Humble sport compact cars that were popular tuning platforms in the early 2000s are now having a renaissance as collector’s items. The aftermarket for cars like this has always been pretty robust, but Spoon’s Timeless Collection signifies a new phase of evolution for this scene.
Spoon has been tuning Hondas since the ’80s and was a better-known parts brand when modding Japanese machines really went mainstream in American car culture. Yes, The Fast And The Furious came out right around the same time, circa 2001. In fact, Spoon even got name-dropped in that movie. Hector ran “three Honda Civics with Spoon engines,” remember?
Regardless of your stance on the O.G. F&F flick as an accurate representation of tuner culture, recognize that Spoon is indeed a top-tier purveyor of parts and upgrades for these cars.
This month, Spoon announced it was going to start making factory-style bumpers and fenders for the EG-body Civic of the early ’90s. The reason for this, as reported by Super Street, is that such parts have largely been discontinued by Honda.
But, so what? There are plenty of aftermarket body panel companies stamping out stock-looking fenders for these cars. And even if there weren’t, you could pull some in passable condition out of plenty of southwestern junkyards still.
Spoon’s Timeless Collection body parts are expensive, too. Crazy expensive. A few seconds of Googling turned up a whole bunch of standard EG Civic fenders priced between $40 and $100 apiece. Spoon Civic fenders are $1,345 a pair and its bumper is $1,580.
Now you have the news, and context to appreciate it, but I haven’t quite explained why it’s “cool” or “interesting” as promised by the headline.
It’s interesting as clear evidence that sport compact cars are being taken seriously as worthy of big-budget restorations. If Spoon thinks there’s a market for a $1,600 stock-looking 1992 Civic bumper, there probably is, and that means people are willing to make big investments to optimize the hell out of these cars.
It’s cool because sport compact cars rule and the early 2000s tuner scene is 100 percent my jam. I’m kind of bummed on one hand because it means I’m probably going to get priced out of buying my favorite modest cars. But frankly, I’d rather people recognize the coolness of old Civics than let them rot in junkyards en masse.
I guess we’ll find out how many customers there really are for stuff like this if similar treatments start popping up for other popular models. My old shop teacher used to joke that you could “basically build a brand-new ’69 Camaro out of the Jeg’s catalog.” Maybe that will happen for Japanese cars too.