Honda Civic Type R

2018 Honda Civic Type R Review

Honda Civic Type R
The 2018 Honda Civic Type R

Caroline drives the Honda Civic Type R.

Honda’s Type R badge is legendary, appearing on the brand’s sportiest, most high performance models for over 25 years. After the 2017 launch of the new Honda Civic hatchback, we didn’t have long to wait for the new Honda Civic Type R.

Newly engineered from the ground-up, the new Civic Type R was developed in parallel with the standard Civic hatchback with what Honda claims to be mutual benefits to the dynamics and refinement of both.

It's true that the Honda Civic Type R is working from a good base because in standard form the Honda Civic is a car that's really impressed me in the last year for its space and fun to drive quality.

But the Honda Civic Type R has to be something special. With pricing starting from €51,750, the Type R occupies the same territory as the 350hp Ford Focus RS and 310hp Volkswagen Golf R.

The new Honda Civic Type R is lighter and more rigid with a lower centre of gravity. It uses a front wheel drive layout and the same 2.0-litre VTEC Turbo as the previous generation. Except the engine has been reworked to now produce 320hp (up from 310hp).

The interior of the Honda Civic Type R
The interior of the Honda Civic Type R

What's the Honda Civic Type R like to drive?

The Honda Civic Type R is quick - 0 to 100km is 5.8 seconds - but it makes for a scintillating drive that the numbers can only tell half the story of. In terms of performance it is nothing short of sublime and it has been engineered to put the power to the road with minimal fuss, just glorious noise from the 2.0-litre turbo.

Dual-Pinion Variable-Ratio Electric Power Steering is new to this generation of the Civic Type R. It uses a similar system to the standard Civic, but optimises the variable ratio to deliver a more direct and secure feel at high speed. No matter what the speed, the Civic Type R shows incredible grip and poise through corners with tactile steering that's quick and deft, and the smooth and precise six speed manual gearbox is deeply satisfying too.

There’s also a helical limited slip differential for greater traction during hard cornering. The front wheels are equipped with a high performance Brembo brake package, developed specifically for the car.

Honda has used an advanced Dual-Axis Strut Front Suspension system to reduce torque steer and enhance 'on-the-limit' cornering and steering feel. At the rear, the Type R’s new multi-link suspension enhances ride comfort as well as high speed stability.

New driving modes to enhance driving pleasure

Honda has introduced three driving modes: Comfort, Sport and +R. Each selection tailors the adaptive dampers, steering force, gear shift feeling and throttle response. The Comfort mode is where the suspension is at its most compliant for daily use and I had no issue with ride comfort in this car. Sport mode livens up the throttle response and stiffens things up.

Honda Civic Type R
The Honda Civic Type R starts from €51,750

But +R is a real revelation not to be missed. Even on a back road, press this button and you will feel like turning up at the gates of Mondello Park. It turns the car into a super stiff, eager, roaring hot hatch that will touch even the coldest of hearts! Truly sublime.

Does that wing do anything?

On the outside, Honda for sure has thrown all the bits at new Civic Type R: huge, grin-inducing, aerodynamic rear wing, brake cooling vents, 20" alloys, lightweight aluminium vented bonnet, and centre mounted triple outlet exhaust. The interior features plenty of red trim to increase the heart rate and the sports seats are really comfortable and supportive.

Like the rest of the Civic range, the new Honda Civic Type R features the Honda SENSING suite of safety technologies including Collision Mitigation Braking System, Forward Collision Warning, Lane Departure Warning, Road Departure Mitigation, Lane Keeping Assist System, Traffic Sign Recognition, Intelligent Speed Assistance and Intelligent Adaptive Cruise Control.

Honda Civic Type R
The Honda Civic Type R is a scintillating drive

Buyers can also add a GT Pack for an extra €2,200. This pack adds carbon fibre effect sport garnish with red trim, Blind Spot Information including Cross Traffic Monitor, dual-zone climate control, auto-dimming rear view mirror, Honda CONNECT with Garmin Navigation, wireless charging pad, 542-watt 12-speaker audio system and LED front fog lights.

The new Honda Civic Type R is not discrete: it's old-school, 'look at my massive wing', immature and exciting. But Honda has addressed any refinement or comfort issues from the previous generation and the Civic Type R can be remarkably well-behaved too for daily use...

Yet even at low speeds this is a car that can thrill and excite. It's clear that the Civic Type R has been engineered for excellence - on the road and on the track. A true car for enthusiasts.

Caroline Kidd

Model tested: Honda Civic Type R GT Pack
Price: 
€53,950 (Available from €51,750)
Engine:  2.0-litre turbo petrol
Power: 
320hp
Torque: 400Nm
0-100km/h: 
5.8 seconds
Top speed: 272km/h
Claimed Economy: 
7.7/100km
CO2 emissions:  
176g/km
Motor tax: 
€750 per year


Honda Civic Type R

Me And My Car: Jim Millett's Honda Civic Type R

Jim Millett is a Changing Lanes reader from the UK. Jim owns a 2016 Honda Civic Type R. In this Me and My Car Feature, Jim tells us all about his Type R and why he chose this car.

1. Tell me about your car (Make/model/engine/year of registration). 

It's a Honda Civic Type R FK2 with a four cylinder 2.0 VTEC Turbo with 306bhp and 295lbft of torque. The car was registered in September 2016.

2. How long have you owned this car?

I purchased it new.

3. Why did you choose this car?

I needed a practical, sensible and reliable four seat hatchback. A Honda seemed to fit the brief. Also, the fact that it can do nearly 170mph and costs around £30k also helped. The styling is Marmite but I personally loved it and it certainly stands out. One test drive sealed the deal.

4. What do you like about this car?

The superb manual gearbox and seats are stand-out features. I love the slightly old school power delivery with a touch of lag, but when it hooks up, the power delivery is addictive. The handling and grip are incredible considering it has to deploy over 300bhp through the front wheels. I do love the styling...controversial I know!

Honda Civic Type R
Jim is impressed with his Honda Civic Type R's power delivery and superb manual gearbox
5. Is there anything you would change about your car?

Only one thing I would change...just wish it sounded a bit more aggressive considering it has four large exhaust pipes. However, I prefer this to the current trend of artificial piped-in engine sound and contrived pops and bangs. The Type R has a certain honesty and authenticity about it. Some people have stated it is too harsh in R mode for British roads...absolute rubbish. Nowhere near as hard as my old Clio RS200 with Cup pack!

6. What's in your glovebox?

Only three things in the glovebox...locking wheel nut key, handbook and one CD (Ten by Pearl Jam...showing my age).

7. Favourite memory of the car? 

My favourite memory of the car is driving the infamous EVO Triangle in Wales. Totally dry, empty roads...worth the journey just to drive this bit of road. Type R was in its element.

8. Who would your ideal passenger be?
Chris Harris so he can give me some driver tuition and then show me what the car can actually do.
Honda Civic Type R
Jim has happy memories of driving his Honda Civic Type R on the EVO Triangle but he would like a few driving tips from Chris Harris!
9. Three words to describe your car.

Fast, Raw....Unique

If you would like your car featured on Changing Lanes, email caroline@changinglanes.ie

vlog

Vlog: Honda Civic Type R

On Tuesday I was in Dublin to drive the new Honda Civic Type R. Watch my vlog from the day and then read my Civic Type R first drive review.


Honda Civic Type R review ireland

2017 Honda Civic Type R First Drive Review

An all-new Honda Civic landed in Ireland earlier in 2017 but Honda hasn’t made us wait long for the hot version. The fifth generation of the Honda Civic Type R packs 320hp and is available to order now in Ireland. Honda’s Type R label for performance models is legendary and 2017 marks the 25th anniversary since the debut of the first Honda bearing this badge.

The new Civic Type R car has already broken the record for fastest front wheel drive hatchback around the Nurburgring with a time of 7 minutes and 48.3 seconds, 7 seconds faster than the previous generation. But how will it handle Irish tarmac? I’ve been driving the new Honda Civic Type R at the Irish launch to find out.

Styling

The styling of the new Honda Civic Type R is a talking point. Just like the previous generation, the new Civic Type R is not subtle and harks back to a time when hot hatches had big wings and larger than life air scoops. The new Civic Type R’s other distinguishing feature is the centre mounted triple exhaust at the back. The motorsport inspired features all have a purpose including brake cooling vents, aerodynamic rear wing and a lightweight aluminium vented bonnet. The car is available in six colours including Championship White, Rallye Red and the exclusive Sonic Grey Pearl.

Interior

Inside the standard interior of the Honda Civic has been suitably ‘souped up’ with red to get your pulse racing. The basic ergonomics are the same and quality is good, with the alcantara trim a welcome addition. You slot into red bucket seats that are comfortable and supportive. And low, oh so low.

Honda Civic Type R review ireland
The interior of the new Honda Civic Type R

Practicality

The Honda Civic Type R is five door only and comes with generous passenger space and a 414 litre boot.

Engine

Under the bonnet there is the same 2.0-litre VTEC Turbo as in the previous generation. Torque is the same at 400Nm but power is up from 310hp to 320hp. 0 to 100kmh is achieved in 5.8 seconds, going onto a top speed of 272kmh. CO2 emissions of 176g/km put the Civic Type R in tax band E with motor tax of €750 per year, while it can return a claimed 36.7mpg on a combined cycle.

On the road

The new Honda Civic Type R is lighter and more rigid, with a lower centre of gravity. An advanced Dual-Axis Strut Front Suspension system reduces torque steer and enhances on-the-limit cornering and steering feel. At the rear, the Type R’s new multi-link suspension enhances ride comfort as well as high speed stability. Dual-Pinion Variable-Ratio Electric Power Steering is new to the Type R, using a similar system as featured on the standard Civic, but optimising the variable ratio to deliver a more direct and secure feel at high speed.

The Honda Civic Type R's standard six speed manual gearbox has a rev matching function for smoother shifts. There’s also a helical limited slip differential for greater traction during hard cornering. The front wheels are equipped with a high performance Brembo brake package, developed specifically for the car. The new Civic Type R brings three driving modes: Comfort, Sport, and R+ for more track focused driving. Each selection tailors the adaptive dampers, steering force, gear shift feeling and throttle response.

The new Honda Civic Type R may look immature, but from behind the steering wheel it’s matured with improved ride comfort that will make it an easy car to live with on a daily basis. Yet put the foot to the floor and the Civic Type R takes off like a hooligan trying to escape a robbery at the corner shop. The steering has extra weight in it and the car moves through corners at speed with ultimate precision and immense grip for a front wheel drive hatch. I look forward to spending more time with the car in 2018 to fully explore the Type R’s new character.

Honda Civic Type R review ireland
The Honda Civic Type R is on sale from €51,750 in Ireland

Equipment

Like the rest of the Civic range, the new Honda Civic Type R features the Honda SENSING suite of safety technologies including Collision Mitigation Braking System, Forward Collision Warning, Lane Departure Warning, Road Departure Mitigation, Lane Keeping Assist System, Adaptive Cruise Control, Traffic Sign Recognition, Intelligent Speed Assistance and Intelligent Adaptive Cruise Control.

Buyers can add a GT Pack for an extra €2,200. This pack adds carbon fibre effect sport garnish with red trim, Blind Spot Information including Cross Traffic Monitor, dual-zone climate control, auto-dimming rear view mirror, Honda CONNECT with Garmin Navigation, wireless charging pad, 542-watt 12-speaker audio system and LED front fog lights.

Pricing

The Honda Civic Type R retails in Ireland at €51,750, while the GT Pack is an extra €2,200.

Rivals

You will also find the Volkswagen Golf R and the Ford Focus RS occupying the space around the same price range as the new Honda Civic Type R, though both of those models are all wheel drive.

Verdict

The Honda Civic Type R is a ‘look at me’ hot hatchback and is not shy about its performance credentials. If the interior of this car does not get your pulse racing, I don’t know what will. Aside from being a ‘practical’ five door hatchback, the Honda Civic Type R is a front wheel drive wild animal with sophisticated engineering and the heart of a rev-happy, 2.0-litre VTEC Turbo. Honda knows how to play the hot hatch game and the new Honda Civic Type R is a serious contender against the competition.

Caroline Kidd


2017 Honda Civic Type R

New Honda Civic Type R Now Available To Order

The new Honda Civic Type R is now available to order in Ireland from Honda dealers nationwide. The fifth generation of the high performance hot hatchback is priced from €51,750.

The new Honda Civic Type R uses the same 2.0-litre VTEC Turbo engine as the previous generation of the car, but has been optimised and refined and now produces 320hp with peak torque of 400Nm.

The standard six-speed manual transmission has been improved by a rev match control system.

Compared to the previous Type R, torsional rigidity is improved by 38%.

The front Macpherson strut suspension of the standard hatchback is revised with new geometry to minimise torque steer and maximise sporty handling. At the rear, the new independent multi-link system of the standard car is improved with the use of unique high rigidity suspension arms.

The new Honda Civic Type R has an enhanced selection of driving modes. A new ‘Comfort’ setting sits alongside ‘Sport’ and track-focused ‘+R’ modes. Each selection tailors the adaptive dampers, steering force, gear shift feeling and throttle response.

2017 Honda Civic Type R

The front wheels are equipped with a high performance Brembo brake package, developed specifically for the car.

There are new 20-inch 'berlina' black alloy wheels, unique to the Type R and three fully-functional tailpipes are positioned in the centre of the rear diffuser. Main tailpipes on either side deliver exhaust flow from the engine, while a unique, smaller centre tailpipe controls the sonic tone of the engine.

Like the rest of the Civic range, the new Honda Civic Type R features the Honda SENSING suite of safety technologies including Collision Mitigation Braking System, Forward Collision Warning, Lane Departure Warning, Road Departure Mitigation, Lane Keeping Assist System, Adaptive Cruise Control, Traffic Sign Recognition, Intelligent Speed Assistance and Intelligent Adaptive Cruise Control.

Also fitted as standard are Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA) with traction control, which enhances control capability while the vehicle is accelerating, braking, cornering, and Indirect Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS).

Buyers can add a GT Pack for an extra €2,200. This pack adds carbon fibre effect sport garnish with red trim, Blind Spot Information including Cross Traffic Monitor, dual-zone climate control, auto-dimming rear view mirror, Honda CONNECT with Garmin Navigation, wireless charging pad, 542-watt 12-speaker audio system and LED front fog lights.

Caroline Kidd