Hondata K-PRO: Ordering, Unboxing & Installation

by perry_w 1. January 2015 15:35


Earlier this year I purchased the K-PRO (version 3) engine computer tuning solution made by Hondata, Inc. This modified ECU would open up my 2002 Civic Si (EP3) to performance tuning. While there are a couple engine tuning solutions available for my car, the Hondata K-PRO is the most common and well-supported. I’ve seen King’s skillful dyno tuning and was looking forward to having some tuning done to make the most of my car’s modest modifications.


To prepare, I picked up an un-modified ECU for my EP3 -- the PNF version, which is the same as what comes with the EP3. I bought this ECU second hand, from a reputable seller. Placing the order with King Motorsports was easy. Scott
from King pointed me to a form to fill out and send in with my ECU to Hondata’s facility in Torrance, California. Scott had to fill in some paperwork on his end as well so that Hondata would be prepared for my ECU.

Once Hondata’s technician received my ECU, they tested that it functions properly. Then they open up the metal case and add their daughterboard to the main board. This new board is about a quarter the size of the main Honda board and fits snugly inside the case – allowing the ECU case cover to fit back on as it originally did. Hondata also cuts a small square opening into the side of the ECU case to allow for the USB port connection. As a final step, they closed the ECU back up, test it, and put a HONDATA sticker across the top of the case.

I also purchased a used laptop that runs Windows. I installed the free KManager software ( from Hondata on it. The laptop and Hondata software will allow tuning of the K-PRO ECU via a USB cable. I reviewed Hondata’s installation and KManager tutorials online.


A Fedex package arrived swiftly from Hondata. Inside the box:

* USB cable
* Serial input harness for data logging (I didn't need to hook this up for my needs)
* KManager software on CD (you can also download this online for free)
* Hondata license plate frame and stickers
* Printed materials and a note to relocated the ground strap on intake manifold






Installation was fairly straightforward. Here were my steps on my EP3 (your steps my be different):

1. Disconnect battery.
2. Remove the passenger side foot well trim panel. You should see the ECU. Carefully release and remove the harnesses leading to the ECU.
3. Bend or remove upper glove box “stoppers” to allow the glove box to swing completely open.
4. Use a 10mm socket to remove the 3 bolts holding the ECU in place. 1 bolt is behind the glove box, and 2 bolts can be removed from underneath the glove box.
5. You should now be able to remove the ECU.
6. Install your K-PRO ECU in place. Installation is reverse of the removal. Make sure the harnesses are securely clicked into place.
7. Before you close up the glove box, plug the USB cable into your K-PRO. I used a few zip ties to keep it from accidentally pulling out and let the rest of the USB cable rest inside the glove box.
8. Per the included note from Hondata, I relocated the battery ground strap from my intake manifold to the valve cover bolt. All that was required to do this was a 10mm socket. The existing ground strap is long enough for the relocation.
9. Reconnect the battery.
10. Turn the key to on (but do not start the engine).
11. Make sure your laptop has successfully installed KManager, and launch KManager. Then plug the USB cable into laptop. You can now upload one of the base maps provided by Hondata.
12. The next steps only apply if your K-PRO conversion was performed on a second hand ECU:
13. Using KManager, disable the immobilizer.
14. In order to have the immobilizer matched (progrmamed) to my ECU: I scheduled a service appointment at my local Honda dealer. My service advisor understood what a K-PRO is and what I was trying to accomplish. I drove to the dealer with the immobilizer disabled. Once there, I used my laptop to re-enable the immobilizer. This is an important step. If you don’t re-enable the immobilizer, the Honda tech’s equipment will not be able to locate and program your immobilizer.








Q: Where can I get more information on the benefits and compatibility of the K-PRO system?

Hondata’s website has a lot of good information and is updated regularly:

Q: Is the K-PRO only for heavily modified cars?

While the K-PRO conversion is well suited for turbo/ supercharger applications and K-series engine swaps, it can also help extract power from basic bolt-on parts such as a performance header, exhaust system and air intake.

Q: What is an immobilizer?

An immobilizer is an electronic security device installed by Honda that prevents the engine from starting unless the correctly paired/programmed key (with immobilizer chip) and ECU are present. It prevents a car from being stolen by a thief bringing his own generic key or ECU.

Q: Do I have to buy a 2nd ECU or can I just send the one in my car?

You can send the ECU that is currently in your car. There are pros and cons to doing that.


PROS: You won’t have to reprogram your immobilizer (assuming you want it enabled). And you can be certain the ECU is fully functional. There is also a cost savings since you won’t be buying a second ECU.


CONS: Your car will have a few days of down time since obviously your car will not be running while the ECU is being modified by Hondata. If you ever want to sell the K-Pro or return to a stock ECU, you will need to buy a stock ECU.

Hondata can also provide a brand new ECU at additional cost when you order. 

Q: What is the big deal about buying from an authorized Hondata dealer?

Simply put, buying from an authorized Hondata dealer like King Motorsports protects you. Hondata has issued a warning that there are counterfeit K-PRO ECUs in circulation:

In 2014 a Florida man was charged by the FBI for having Hondata devices reverse engineered, then built in China and sold as authentic. He generated approximately $58k in income with his scam, so you can only imagine how many fake Hondata devices he put into circulation.

Hondata also warns of a scammer from Texas named Daniel Sanchez who claims to be authorized to sell on behalf of Hondata but is not a Hondata dealer. He has also spread some misinformation about Hondata. More info:

Q: What’s the difference between a Hondata Reflash and a K-PRO?

A Reflash is a reprogramming of your ECU by Hondata. Rather than installing a full daughter board into your ECU case, Hondata reprograms your ECU directly to extract more power with pre-determined changes such as altered cam timing and optimized fuel settings. The cost is significantly less than the full K-PRO conversion, but is not customizable for your car’s specific mods.

More info about the Reflash:

You can always upgrade from a Reflash to the full K-PRO at a later date.

Q: Can I upgrade to a newer version of K-PRO?

Hondata has been very good about consistently updating the K-PRO hardware and software systems. While the software updates are free, the hardware updates are not. Hondata has a program that will allow you to purchase an upgraded K-PRO conversion by sending in your working, older K-PRO ECU.

Q: What kind of laptop do I need to run KManager?

Right now nearly any Windows laptop or netbook will work, including older ones running Windows Vista or newer. A desktop computer will work too, but has obvious portability limitations. A Mac OS will work as well if you have a compatible Windows emulator. Some have even used certain models of the Windows Surface tablets (the ones that run the full Windows 8, not Windows 8 RT). I was able to buy a used Acer netbook from our company’s IT department for about $50. KManager does not take very much CPU power to run, so older laptops will work just fine so long as they meet the software’s minimum operating requirements.




King Motorsports is an authorized Hondata dealer. Buy with confidence online or by phone at (262) 522-7558:




Here is a side-by-side comparison of a stock ECU (left) and the K-PRO conversion (right):





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King Motorsports | Miscellaneous | Product Reviews

Skunk2 Pro-C Coilover Review

by Administrator 3. September 2014 21:53

The following review comes to us via King customer Andy Thompson - thanks Andy!


Skunk2’s Pro-C Coilovers are a solid choice for an all-inclusive, mid-level suspension offering features beneficial to track-specific applications.

Why I Chose Pro-C

I initially set out to find an authentic suspension that offered modern coilover features and chassis-specific production. Although many with newer vehicles will not have this issue, my dated EF chassis has quite limited aftermarket choices. So the Pro-C was one of my only choices.

Skunk2 designs and tests all of their products, specific to application. This is important because the coilover actually matches the intended chassis it was designed for, instead of a coilover that was originally designed for one chassis and has been translated to fit others.

I wanted a fully-inclusive suspension that had springs matched to struts, versus a two-piece spring and strut combination from two separate manufactures. I wanted fully independent adjustability in spring rate, dampening, and ride height. The Pro-C smartly offers ride height adjustability independent of spring rate. With many older suspensions, changing ride height also adjusts the spring rate as a negative side effect.

I was also interested in an inverted mono tube strut to maintain a larger oil capacity while offering strength and responsiveness. The Pro-C does not offer inversion, but still uses a mono tube design versus an OE style struts twin tube design (which can feel unresponsive in performance applications).

Here is a comparison of the EF OEM suspension versus the Pro-C:


12-Way Valving


The Pro-C offers a relatively simple and effective valving system. Removable keys on the top of the strut easily control dampening. The keys are retained to the top of the piston rod via rubber o-rings, which allow them to be left in place during driving.

Many lower quality suspensions advertise 36-way adjustability, which is fine, but can be quite frustrating to keep track of and count out when readjusting damping. With Skunk2 offering 12 points of adjustability, it gives the user enough range to dial in damping with meaningful differences between each click. I currently have my suspension set at 3 in the front and 5 in the rear, for casual street driving.

CNC Machined Aluminum Strut housing and Spring Perches

If you live anywhere with rain, snow, or dirt; aluminum threading and perches are a huge deal. A common issue with lower quality aluminum and steel struts is corrosion, and trying to adjust spring rate after any amount of time usually involves ditching the spanner wrenches and grabbing a punch and hammer. The Pro-Cs are made of 6061-T6 aluminum, which is a tempered grade. This makes the threading much more corrosion-resistant and spring rate adjustability a feature that persists despite your weather or road conditions.

I have two summer seasons on my coilovers, in which they still adjust with ease after road grime is wiped off. I personally apply silicon lubricant to threading to repel water (although road grim builds up quicker but is easily removable).


Street Comfort

Contrary to what is advertised, these coilovers are by no means comfortable. With almost no spring load and low dampening settings, you will still be feeling every crack in the street. On the other hand, the feeling is confident, and there is a total absence of slack in the system. That said, make sure the rest of your suspension system and bushings are up to par-- if not, expect the soft spot in your system to be amplified.

Clearances with UCA

Although this is not a coilover specific issue, some double wishbone suspension setups with front camber kits may run into clearance issues with certain degrees of camber. On my EF, I am running an irrational 4.6 degrees of camber in the front, in which occasionally my front knuckle knocks against the springs and spring perches of the coilover on larger bumps.

Final Word

If you’re a Honda enthusiast looking to get involved in some motor sports such as local auto cross events or open road racing events -- while still being able to drive your car on the street -- this is definitely a great choice.

If you’re planning on driving your car every day or commute long distance to work, the Pro-C may not be for you. Or consider purchasing the Pro-C with lower spring rates.

I am constantly tinkering with my suspension and plan to try a different set of springs for summer 2015. Thanks for reading.

Detailed look at the Pro-C:


See more Skunk2 Racing products at the King Motorsports online store!

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Product Reviews

Unboxing: Skunk2 Alpha Series Header for DC5/EP3

by perry_w 22. August 2014 18:58

Over the years I've only added modest bolt-ons to improve the power output on my 2002 Civic Si (EP3) hatchback. My collection of bolt-ons includes a Mugen airbox, Mugen Twin Loop, RBC intake manifold and K-Pro. After a quick call with Scott at King Motorsports, I settled on his recommendation to go with the Skunk2 Racing Alpha Series header.


Scott said they've seen respectable gains from the Skunk2 header and the build quality gets his thumbs up. From what I've read online, the Alpha is essentially the same design as Skunk2's top-shelf MegaPower line, but at a lower price point thanks to some advanced manufacturing technology (and probably concessions on materials used).


General feedback I've read from owners is that people love this header. Fitment on K20A3/A2 is good, so long as it is done by a professional. Folks with a K24 swap may have to do a bit of magic with their front sway bars -- a common issue that affects all aftermarket header choices.

This is the first race header I've ever purchased. I had a lot of questions about what would be included out of the box, so for you fellow newbies out there, this post is for you. Keep in mind this is for the DC5/EP3 (Skunk2 part #412-05-1910) -- so your results may vary for other fitments.

The box itself is fairly sturdy and red and black graphics scream performance. This is one delivery you don't want to leave on your front porch overnight. For you married folks, this is a car part delivery that will be hard to hide, ha ha.


The header was wrapped in bubble wrap which provides reasonable protection during shipment. The entire contents of the box:

- Alpha series header
- adapter pipe
- donut gasket
- oxygen sensor defouler
- 2 front sway bar brackets - allows for side-to-side repositioning of the sway bar thanks to elongated mount openings.
- owner's kit - a black envelope that includes a Skunk2 brochure and registration card with serial number.
- Skunk2 Racing decal

Here are the front sway bar brackets, defouler and donut gasket:

Here is the adapter pipe:

Here is one of the 2 oxygen sensor bungs. Remove this bolt to install the oxygen sensor.:

Here is the second oxygen sensor bung. Remove bolt to install oxygen sensor or defouler.:

The top has an ALPHA badge and holographic sticker with serial number:

The underside has two ALPHA stamps near the hanger:

There is one more badge that says "FOR OFF ROAD USE ONLY. NEVER TO BE USED ON POLLUTION CONTROLLED VEHICLES" just downstream of the hanger:

Next up -- installation and dyno tuning!

See more Skunk2 Racing products at the King Motorsports online store!


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Product Reviews

Mugen Power 16 Coffee Mug

by Administrator 22. January 2014 20:16

You have plenty of go-fast parts for your car, but what about your body? Mugen has a nifty solution to your coffee and caffeine fluid delivery system in the form of this ceramic Mugen mug.

This mug is glossy black with pearlescent-white graphics of the circular MUGEN POWER 16 badge and Mugen logo beneath. The graphics appear on both side of the mug so you can enjoy them in both left-hand drink (LHD) or right-hand drink (RHD) setups.

The mug measures about 2.5 Mugen lug nuts tall, and has a fluid capacity of 250 milliliters (about 8.5 ounces). It's on the smaller side compared to what we might be used to Stateside, giving you ample opportunity to really savor that precious beverage. The mug comes in a white gift box with Mugen logo. A perfect gift for yourself or your favorite Mugen fan!

Currently available at the King Motorsports online store (released late 2013):