Owner: William Law
Dynamometer Model: SP Engineering Dynojet
Testing: Scott Tsuneishi
In 2004, Honda replaced the high-revving 2.0L F20C engine with the 2.2L F22C. Still rated at 237 hp from the factory, the larger displacement F22C sports a broader powerband from its 2,157cc displacement, increasing output by 9 lb-ft of torque over the previous model. With incredible handling, a high-rpm engine, and a precise six-speed manual transmission, the S2000 is a pure sports car, equally suited for carving canyons as navigating traffic.
The bump in mid-range power and torque brought by the F22C's increased stroke came at the cost of a slower, 8,200rpm redline-down from the previous engine's 9,000 mark. But considering how much more time most of these engines operate in the mid-range as opposed to at redline, this is a beneficial trade-off for all but dedicated track cars. Unfortunately, the F20C's failure to deliver additional power gains when enhanced with bolt-on performance parts lingered.
With 80K miles on the odometer, the S2000 was given a tune-up and a new set of Denso Iridium spark plugs before our testing commenced. We should note the car was already equipped with an ASM S-Special 70mm titanium exhaust system prior to testing.
K&N Fuel Injection Performance Kit (FIPK) Intake
2,500 to 3,500 rpm range: 1.0 to 3.0
3,500 to 5,500 rpm range: 3.0 to 3
intake, filter, filter adapter, brackets, clamps, hose, rubber trim, heat shield, nuts and bolts, instructions, CARB sticker
10- and 12mm socket, 10mm open-end wrench, ratchet, extension, screwdriver, pliers
The K&N FIPK intake was designed to replace the factory conical air filter and cold-air induction box for an increase in horsepower. The FIPK uses a high-density polyethylene intake tube and a heat shield to keep the intake cooler while isolating it from ingesting hot air. This K&N intake system has been credited as one of the most cost-effective modifications for the S2000 and remains a popular upgrade not only for its horsepower potential, but also its CARB-approved, street-legal status in all 50 U.S. states, as well as its million-mile limited warranty.
Installation of the intake involves paying close attention to the step-by-step instruction manual, which requires disconnecting and rerouting several vacuum hoses and fluid lines. Because the intake pipe is made of plastic, make sure not to overtighten the intake clamps.
Dyno testing revealed an increase in horsepower and torque throughout the power band, with a peak gain of 3.8 hp and 3.3 lb-ft of torque, along with a healthy gain of 3 hp and 4-7 lb-ft of torque from 2,800 to 5,800 rpm.
Plasma Direct Coil Packs
2,500 to 3,500 rpm range: -2.0 to -1.0
3,500 to 5,500 rpm range: 0.0 to
coil packs, instructions, sticker
10mm socket, ratchet, extension
Plasma Direct is a factory replacement ignition coil system that uses a high-power amplifier built into the unit to increase spark current by two times that of the original equipment. The OBD II-compliant and CARB-approved Plasma Direct system produces a highly effective multi-spark discharge throughout the powerband, in comparison to the factory coil that delivers a single-spark discharge. The Plasma Direct's multi-spark discharge and improved spark energy yields improved ignition and greater combustion efficiency, all of which are beneficial for those driving high-horsepower vehicles-R-Magic, Garage Saurus, and M-Speed of Japan all endorse the Plasma Direct system.
Installing the Plasma Direct coil packs is a plug-and-play procedure that requires removal of four 10mm bolts securing each OEM coil pack in place, unplugging the portion of the wire harness that connects to the packs, then reversing the process with the new coil packs in place of stock. Take precaution not to overtighten the bolts securing coil packs or you can risk damaging the valve cover.
While our low- to mid-range horsepower and torque numbers showed marginal power gains, a close analysis of the dyno graph reveals gains of 5 hp and 5 lb-ft of torque in the high-rpm range, with the largest gains taking place at 7,500 rpm-proof that the Plasma Direct coil packs' multi-spark discharge enabled a more efficient combustion at higher rpm.