Don’t pinch yourselves too hard, Honda enthusiasts. The extreme Civic Type R is real, it’s headed for European showrooms next year, and it looks to be the best example of the famed red ‘H’ badge ever by a country mile.
Honda has unveiled a second Type R concept in anticipation of the 2014 Paris Motor Show, and in doing so, the Japanese automaker has confirmed a new batch of specs for the hot hatchback.
The engine, an ‘Earth Dreams’ 2.0-liter turbocharged four, is now official with a 276-plus horsepower output and 7,000-rpm redline. With those specifications, the fourth-gen Type R puts all previous iterations to shame. It may even best the 290-hp, JDM-spec NSX-R of 2005.
“Honda has had four Type R model derivatives – the Civic, Integra, Accord and NSX,” said Suehiro Hasshi, Large Project Leader for the Civic Type R. “The engine in this new Honda Civic Type R is unrivalled against all of them in terms of raw power, torque and engine response.”
Type R enthusiasts love toys, so Honda looks to carry the Civic’s boy racer exterior into the cabin with a plethora of track-focused gadgets.
A highlight of that philosophy is the debuting ‘+R’ button, which remaps engine torque, increases steering response, and stiffens the Civic’s new, four-point Adaptive Damper System.
“In default standard mode, the Civic Type R is exceptionally agile, an everyday sports car with an enjoyable and fluid acceleration,” Hasshi explained. “The ‘+R’ button brings out a more dynamic and athletic car for the driver, to set pulses racing. The difference in character is immense.”
The Civic Type R may be gaudy in appearance, but this is without a doubt a driver’s car first. For proof of that, look no further than the transmission. There’s no disconnected DCT here; the boosted hatchback will only be available with a six-speed manual. In fact, it’s one of the few vehicles out there still doing so, which adds to the Civic’s pure driving experience. Hasshi agrees.
“The concept of the new Civic Type R is to be the complete driver’s car so this was the best option.”