Even if you go to every meet, keep up to date with every local blog and frequent all of the main forums, chances are you haven’t seen or heard of this car before. So you are probably thinking it is just another clean Civic build to recently pop up on the radar. Well that would be where you are wrong: this car has been like this for almost 4 years now. Marko is old school and has been around the Brisbane Honda scene for a long time. It really shows once you start talking to him.
In a market that is flooded with copies, Marko’s EK Civic still to this day manages to stand tall, using only the best of the best gear and swearing by it. In actual fact Marko’s car has flown so under-the-radar and been so out of sight from prying eyes that when I posted a picture to Instagram of us shooting the car, I received messages from a few guys I know giving praise for the car, and saying that it “came out of nowhere”. When I mentioned that it was in fact an old school build and getting to around 4 years old, they were flabbergasted that they had never seen or heard of it before. It just goes to show that not everyone flaunts their stuff and some people prefer to stay quiet.
Marko started with one thing in mind and that was track work, and it is evident that track was his influence when you look closer at his build. Unfortunately due to life changes and some not so nice police officers, Marko never quite got the EK to the circuit. He did however take it down the drag strip a number of times throughout its build. Marko’s Civic started life as a dead stock red EK1 hatch and with a 2 year long build span, has ended up as the final product that you see here. The first thing you spot is the unusual colour choice. At first in certain lights it looks like a dark grey, almost charcoal colour, it is BMW series 1 Havanna Metallic, which looks amazing in person. Match that with Marko’s killer choice of wheels, a set of SSR Type Cs in 16×7 +30 all round wrapped in some sticky Bridgestone RE001s. The car is sitting nicely thanks to a set of Tein Superstreet Coilovers with 8kg front and 6kg rear. Marko kept his exterior mods quite subtle, the only way to tell of the seriousness is with a keen eye. Spotting the 5 stud conversion with slotted rotors and type r calipers. From the rear it is hard to miss the always serious looking Function 7 control arms and big ASR brace. He finished this off with an SiR front lip, Spoon Mirrors and a super rare Spoon carbon wing.
Things start to move from subtle to serious when you venture into the interior of Marko’s EK. The interior has been resprayed in the same gorgeous BMW series 1 Havanna Metallic and in keeping with the track theme Marko has left the interior completely stripped. Next thing you spot are the classic red Recaro SR4s and the awesome looking genuine Miracle X-bar. Marko has always loved the EK9s so he spiced up his interior with genuine EK9 steering wheel, gear knob and cluster. Finally topping the interior off with the necessary fire extinguisher a custom made carbon surround for his kill switch and some awesome Defi gauges to watch his oil temp and pressure and water temp. He didn’t skimp on any facet of the car and it is evident everywhere you look.
One thing many Honda owners take pride in is their engine bay and the myriad of engine swaps they see and go through. Marko is of course in the same boat, but just like everything else about his car, he kept the clean, functional and subtle theme going on as well as only using the highest quality parts. When attempting a motor swap it is very easy to swayed into buying 2nd rate gear and not the brand name stuff, but as Marko said “I wanted to do it once and do it right, so I bought the best gear I could. Why bother wasting time with anything else?” When he began his build he picked up a B18C from an Integra DC2 Type R, with a JDM 96 spec Type R gearbox with an LSD. The motor sits in the bay thanks to some Hasport engine mounts. He added some bolt-ons to the motor to see some gains, most notably the Hondata S300 ECU, Injen CAI and the big dollar TODA headers. After everything was in the bay and running he got Adrian from TODA Australia to tune it, which saw 132fwkw (176fwhp). An awesome figure for a stock B18 with bolt ons. Mate that with a stripped EK that has been weighed without driver at 900kg flat and you have yourself one awesome combination.
It is always good to see the guys who have been around the scene for so long still kicking around in the same cars they had from the beginning. Even after 4 years Marko’s EK still stands tall amongst a crowd, being subtle yet perfectly done at the same time. Marko’s car shows that the age old saying ‘Quality>Quantity’ still stands true. It isn’t about the sum of your parts, it is about what parts you have and what you do with them. In a scene full of unoriginality and copycats it is awesome to still see cars that have done their own thing. Unfortunately Marko is putting the car up as an EOI, whether or not he sells will be a different story, but I for one hope he doesn’t. I will leave you with some rolling shots to show you just how clean Marko’s EK looks rolling.