All posts by Nicholas Thomas

Defending the King – 2017 Honda Civic Type R Direct Fit Catch Can R&D Part 1 – Stock Review

It’s finally here. After 20 years, and a few extra months of waiting, the Civic Type R has made its way to the States. I have to say, if the standard Civic wasn’t striking enough, the Type R has the qualities to make it one scalding hot hatchback. While some of the components carried over from the last generation, including some of the aerodynamics and the return of the mighty K20C1, the FK8 actually went on a bit of a diet and received not only a cosmetic makeover, but also a suspension overhaul fit for the new king of the … Continue Reading ››

Protecting your V8 Killer – 2011-2014 Ford F-150 3.5L EcoBoost Catch Can R&D Part 1 – Stock Review

As much as my car enthusiast-self hates to admit it, the days of the gas powered V8 are numbered. Even never owning a vehicle motorized by one of these monstrous power plants, it’s a sad concept to wrap my head around. For decades, we’ve all relied on those eight cylinders for the necessity to haul heavy objects around, and for the sheer enjoyment of speed. For those of you in the business of the latter, you might find this to be foreboding, especially since one of the pioneers of popularizing the V8 is the one driving the final nail in … Continue Reading ››

Intercooler Sandwich – 2015+ VW MK7 GTI/Golf R, Audi A/S3 Intercooler R&D Part 1 – Stock Review

The Golf GTI has been one of the most revered hot hatchbacks since its inception in the mid-1970s. While it was immediately a hit in Europe, and especially the UK, we didn’t get the chance to experience Volkswagen’s ingenious combination of efficiency and speed until the early 80’s with the “Rabbit” GTI. The MK1’s screaming 98 horsepower engine boasting Bosch’s latest fuel injection technology, combined with crisp and responsive suspension, was enough to draw in a huge following. With that following came an explosion in aftermarket parts for these vehicles, from wheels to lowering kits, and just about any … Continue Reading ››

Finishing Touches – 2011+ Dodge Charger and Challenger Aluminum Expansion Tank R&D Part 1 – Stock Review

I have a confession to make. I’ve never been a fan of American muscle cars. Most of this sentiment can be attributed to my two older brothers, who both molded my young mind to favor BMWs, Audis, and Mini Coopers over the fire breathing V8s of Detroit. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against the mighty muscle car. In fact, it’s almost a strange concept as an automotive enthusiast not to have a soft spot for engines measured in cubic inches. With a roaring V8 in the front that sends all that power to the rear wheels, creating warp … Continue Reading ››

The Chink in the Armor – Aluminum Expansion Tank R&D, Post 1: Stock Review

It goes without saying that the cooling system routed throughout the engine bay of any vehicle works best when the coolant stays in the system. It’s one of the main design requirements in fact. If that sounds familiar, that’s because this same statement was made about the Ford 7.3 Powerstroke’s expansion tank, which begs the question, is there a chink in the armor of Ford’s self-proclaimed tough built trucks? While most of the F-150 is "Built Ford Tough" the factory expansion tank doesn't exactly live up to that standard. Continue Reading ››