The 2004 TSX is already one of our favorite Honda sedans of all time. Following my preview drive last January, I knew I had to buy one as soon as they hit the showroom floors in late Spring.
While the TSX package as delivered is quite satisfying, I'm a bit of a power freak. While not underpowered, the TSX doesn't exactly light any fires, either. This didn't stop me from making my purchase, as the rest of the package is so darned brilliant, I just had to have it. I also knew that the TSX's DOHC i-VTEC K24 is closely related to the RSX Type S's K20 motor, which has proven itself to be quite potent with simple modifications. My logic was that it would only be a matter of time before similar upgrades emerged for the K24.
Now things are starting to trickle down the pipeline for the TSX. Several companies have released air induction systems for the car, and AEM is one of the latest. A few weeks ago, their new Short Ram Intake system was shipped to me so I could test it on my car. By coincidence, I received a call from Matt at Hondata and they were looking for somebody to test fit their intake manifold heat shield gasket on a TSX. I decided to "take one for the team" and a few days later both the AEM intake and the Hondata gasket arrived on my doorstep.
I decided to install the Hondata intake gasket on the car first. I wasn't really expecting significant gains in power from it, but any time you can take heat out of the intake, it's generally a good thing. I scheduled dyno time with Arthur of Dynolab in Marietta, GA for today (Tuesday, March 23), but I installed the intake manifold gasket ahead of time on Monday, because I knew the gasket installation would be fairly involved (draining and refilling the coolant system can be messy), and I figured Arthur wouldn't want me hanging out in his shop all day long while I did it. I did manage to peform some datalogging of the cylinder head and intake manifold temps using a two channel thermocouple. Results from before and after installtion show that Hondata's heat shield gasket delivered significant improvements. More on that later.