RAC Cars News


Honda Civic Type R sets five new track records

By raccars Published

Honda Type R

After losing its Nurburgring record, the Honda Civic Type R starts a new record breaking binge.

Honda's hatchback is more commonly known for its staid, sensible, family-friendly properties. There's nothing staid, however, about the Civic Type R, a blistering hot hatch which, until recently, held the title of the fastest Nurburgring lap for a front wheel drive car. Earlier this year however the Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport S shaved 1.4 seconds from its time to steal the Civic's record.

Honda, unamused, has responded by taking the Civic Type R on a record breaking binge around the race tracks of Europe, setting five new lap records for a front wheel drive car in the process.


Driven by Britain's Matt Neal of BTCC fame, the Civic Type R took a two minute and 31.85 second lap around the Grand Prix circuit at Silverstone on 26 April.


Next stop was the Circuit de Spa Francorshamps, the notorious Belgian track, two weeks later. This time World Touring Car Championship's Rob Huff was at the wheel of the Civic Type R and set a new lap record of two minutes and 56.91 seconds - about 90 seconds slower than a Formula One car.


The Civic Type R moved on to Italy and the Autodromo National Monza, where Hungarian Norbert Michelisz used his WTCC experience to set a new lap record of two minutes and 15.16 seconds, with remarkable composure.


Western Europe next and the Autodromo de Estoril in Portugal, home territory for WTCC safety car driver Bruno Correia. He took the Civic Type R to its next new record in two minutes and 4.08 seconds.


Norbert Michelisz took a second turn in the Civic Type R, bringing the car to home territory at the Hungaroring Formula One Grand Prix circuit in Hungary. He set a new front wheel drive lap record of two minutes and 10.85 seconds.

The fourth generation Honda Civic Type R

The current Civic Type R is the fourth generation of the hot hatch and was released in 2014 after a four year gap in production. Honda had previously held firm to a high revving, natural induction format for the Civic Type R, but stricter emissions regulations and the need for ever increasing levels of power saw the company add a turbo to the fourth generation Type R, in order to remain competitive against the likes of the VW Golf and the hot Ford Focus RS, among others. Honda describes the Type R as a wild race car for road use.

The car's unconventional styling is somewhat divisive but there's no controversy about its performance. The Type R boasts a 2.0 litre iVTEC turbo engine with 306bhp, paired with a six speed manual gearbox. 62mph arrives in 5.7 seconds and the top speed is 167mph. CO2 emissions are 170g/km and the car returns 38.7mpg, so it's not exactly clean and green but it is compliant with Euro 6 emissions standards.

The Type R also offers a healthy amount of boot space for a hot hatch and comes with a reassuring level of modern safety kit, such as vehicle stability assist and hill start assist. It comes in five colours and is easily distinguishable by red trim elements and a bold rear spoiler. The Civic Type R is made in Swindon in the UK, and prices here start at about £30,000. As a Honda, the Type R is also very reliable - although that's probably not at the top of most buyers' priorities for this car!

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