HONDA CIVIC TYPE R: More tweaks for speedy Civic

IT’S not Just Red Bull that gives you wings – you also get a ruddy great big black one on the back of Honda’s latest Type R.

One that – combined with the rear diffuser – helps make the Civic perform like a supercar and make it the fastest front wheel drive car to have lapped the legendary Suzuka circuit in Japan.

So, from that you might well deduce that this is not a car for the ordinary motorist. No family hatchback, even if it looks like one and can be driven like one.


Type R is a machine for those who like their adrenalin doses to be delivered in large quantities, and the Type R is happy to oblige.

It’s a car that can pass 62mph in under five and a half seconds and go on to a possible 171mph – all from a seemingly modest four cylinder two litre VTEC Turbo engine that develops 324bhp and a thumping 310 lb/ft of torque.

Performance figures high in Honda circles and it’s figures like that that help you realise why Red Bull’s current Honda powered RB19 is currently all-conquering on the Formula One circuits. Other factors also help of course.

But back to the poorly maintained open roads of the UK. It’s mostly here where the Type R will ply its trade, with maybe the occasional track day thrown in – no point is investing just shy of £50,000 in this type of potential if you’re not going to exploit it, is there?

With a variety of settings on offer – Comfort, Individual and Sport, plus the red R button – there is, as they say, something for everyone.

The Civic is already one of the best handling cars you can buy and Type R just builds on that in the way it sits firmly on the road and deals with twists and turns in the road with a confident change of direction in response to your inputs via the alcantara clad steering wheel.

It’s a sobering thought knocking along at the legal limit and realising the hatchback you’re in will do twice that speed. And then some.

One of the things you can’t unfortunately do very much in the Type R is hold a meaningful conversation, such is the road noise permeating into the car from the interaction of the huge tyres with any dodgy road surface. Only at low traffic speed is a chat with passengers possible.

One of my boys had a Type R a few moons ago, which was quick, but the 200hp then seemed altogether more controllable. But now? Well, the game has moved on to a different level and makes the latest Type R worthy of the cult following it has across the world.

All of its performance figures are an improvement on the previous Type R GT tested a couple of years ago. When will it end?


Honda Civic Type R

Price: £49,090 (£49,740 as tested)
Engine: 2.0 litre, four cylinder, petrol, turbo
Power: 324bhp
Torque: 310lb/ft
Transmission: six speed manual
Top speed: 171mph
0-62mph: 5.4 seconds
Economy: 34.4
CO2 emissions: 186g/km

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