Earlier this month at the Geneva Motor Show, Honda unveiled the brand new Civic Type-R and excited a lot of hot-hatch fanatics. One of the main reasons it excited people was that it promised to sound a lot nicer than the outgoing Type-R which, quite frankly, sounded pretty poor. This one, however, is the polar opposite – check it out in the video below.
The improved sound is a result of those impressive F40-style triple exhaust pipes sticking out the back of the car. The twisting and different diameter pipes create a negative pressure at mid and high RPM that reduces the booming noise that was in issue in the previous model. They also increase the overall volume and generally improve the sound you get when you put your foot down but allow the car to be comfortably quiet for when you’re just cruising on the school run.
Though it is the most exciting development Honda have made, the exhaust noise isn’t the only area in which they have improved the Type-R. Though it uses pretty much the same 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbocharged as the outgoing model, power is up by 10bhp to 316bhp thanks to en ECU tweak and that new exhaust system. That puts it 10bhp ahead of both the Golf R and GTI Clubsport S which are set to be its closest rivals.
With the previous Type-R’s gearbox being one of its real strengths, Honda have made the logical decision of keeping it in the new model. The six-speed manual still feels quick but smooth and now comes with a rev-matching feature which you get in cars such as the Porsche 911 R. As it stands, there is no option for an automatic gearbox.
Independent, multi-link rear suspension with more rigid suspension arms replace the old car’s Torsion Beam which hugely increases the car’s stability. Tortional rigidity is up by 38%. Honda have also increased the track and wheelbase of the new Civic Type-R which means it sits lower and wider to further increase stability.
Then there is the appearance – aggressive, isn’t it? It’s certainly a massive improvement on the old model. Honda claim that all of the crazy aerodynamic features you see are functional and necessary. With a smoother underbody and ‘vortex generators’, it makes for a claimed best-in-class balance between lift and drag, more downforce and therefore greater stability at speed.
European customers can order their Civic Type-R now and get it some time in July. American customers will get theirs slightly earlier and Japan will have to wait until the end of summer to get their hands on it. All will be built at Honda’s plant in Swindon. What do you think of the new Type-R? Let us know in the comments section below or via our Facebook and Twitter pages!