2002 Honda Insight – Honda Tuning Magazine

28 Jul 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on 2002 Honda Insight – Honda Tuning Magazine
Honda Insight

2002 Honda Insight The Frank-Insight

Go ahead, take look at the photos, specifically the “bay,” then browse the spec list and reread the for the third or fourth time. let’s get down to business First and foremost, putting a V-6 an Insight is downright wacky.

an Insight to rear-wheel drive is crazy. Creating a one-off, Insight is pure madness! At that’s what I thought I first laid eyes Mini Tec’s Frank-Insight

Little did I know, the build even finished at that they had visions of a snarling setup on the horizon.

Last I’d come across Mini website, superfastminis.com. while a friend research swap for early model Minis. through the site, I found a inventory of Mini Tec custom-built dedicated to making the art of swapping a powerplant into a Mini safe and simple.

Front, rear, and all-wheel-drive options are the norm at this but I was quickly pulled away any and all thoughts of Minis when I the blue Insight you see pictured. A look revealed an Acura TL sitting in the chest cavity of the anemic gas sipper, and I immediately an email to get more info on one-of-a-kind build.

The first is, of course, “How do you come up something like this?”

Tec states, “Approximately two years a potential customer inquired of the of fitting the complete first-generation Hybrid system into a Mini. We were intrigued, so we a wrecked 2000 Insight and began dismantling it. When we the battery pack, we discovered a vacancy aft the seat area.

Previous experience with engine cars gave us an We’d been reading J-series swaps in Honda but considered the J too heavy and tall for the After some quick we knew the J had found a new home. information from Honda forums, and Don at RPM Systems, we decided on a ’03 TL with a ’04 Accord V-6 … and TL ECU.”

In need of an actual car of own for the transplant, the crew took to and eventually came up with a ’02 with “minor flood Mini Tec adds, “The told us water only the floorboard area, and a quick found no evidence otherwise. So for a $1,800, we brought the car back to the for disassembly.” Peeling back the it was apparent that the Insight has completely submerged in muddy at some point as mud reared its face on top of the headliner, hood and everywhere else. A complete was in order before the fabrication began.

“We began by removing the battery area between the rear along with the complete suspension. We then transferred it to the jig and located the engine/… by matching the shaft with the axle then centering and squaring

Honda Insight

With the engine in place, the was tackled (see sidebar), and the nightmare that is almost with a once completely vehicle began—and painfully on for quite some time. plenty of experience with swaps, the shop found the and support wiring were play. However, there plenty of wiring roadblocks the way.

Mini Tec states, “We had to wiper motors, window all relays and fuses—even some We learned a life lesson: deal on a flood car! We as much time on the flood as we did on the swap!”

With the wiring mess a of the past, the TL Type S engine was up and the maiden voyage underway. The of the V-6 combined with the lightweight chassis was incredible. Further revealed that with Tec’s engine mounting and strategies performing so well, above the performance level of the TL the chassis could indeed more.

Some back-and-forth with Don of RPM Systems, and both agreed that a turbocharged V-6 be the next step. A J35 Odyssey with a custom turbo kit by an AEM EMS at just 8 pounds of boost out 400 rear wheel horsepower! At a 2,200 pounds, the power-to-weight is out of this world, and yes, upgraded the factory brakes at all corners.

Mini Tec says they’ve a solid balance with the car and a few more changes to make; a longer final drive, caster adjustment, and some downforce. In the safety department, a new harness, and proper seats add some additional confidence the hammer is dropped. We’ve a number of unique projects through the pages of Honda many of which reside the pages of this very but few are as far outside the box as Mini Tec’s rear-wheel-drive, turbo V-6 Frank-Insight!

rear-wheel-drive, turbocharged 3.5L V-6

Honda Insight
Honda Insight
Honda Insight
Honda Insight
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