For those who followed up happenings on Paris auto show recently probably know that the 2018 Honda Civic Type R prototype was introduced there and it took everyone’s thunder right in front of their noses. Now we have spied this magnificent car in probably close to production edition, testing right on the streets of London.
By the look from these spy shots, it seems that something was done to these cars, specifically on the springs and dampers that now look different than the prototype in Paris. These heavily disguised cars are probably undergoing their final tests before the launch that is due very shortly after the standard Civic hatch arrives in 2017. At the Paris show, Civic Type R’s chief designer Daisuke Tsutamori gave a statement for Auto Express saying “it pursues the ultimate function – that’s why we made it to that design. You can expect that the car you see on the stand will be close to the car we will see on the road”.
What this means is that the Honda is trying a new approach with this hot hatch implementing a more mature look and feel which will replace the old model’s extreme appearance. The large rear wing is the only thing that will remain the same while the front bumper and rear diffuser will be somewhat toned down from its old out-of-the-way look. What adds to the aggression on this vehicle are the smoky lenses and the newly designed front bumper which now looks even better. Before these tests in London, the Type R was caught doing performance tests on Nurburgring race track in Germany where it also featured the oversized rear wing. Despite all the talks that the rear spoiler will be scratched off the production model it seems that it will indeed find its functionality on the version that will come to dealerships. Tsutamori confirmed that as well stating that “The purpose of this model will be to fight for the record”.
What was noticeable on the floor of the Paris show is that the Type R trademark design features such as red bumper detailing, flared wheel arches and oversized air intakes actually remained on the 2017 prototype, but the overall style of the car was somehow toned down, unlike the ongoing model. But don’t get disappointed right now, because the traditional body shape will aid in boosting of practicality for this vehicle.
The engineers also moved in a specific direction regarding the powertrain that the 2018 Honda Civic Type R will host. It will receive a tuned version of the current 2.0 L four-cylinder turbo engine which will increase its power from 306 HP and 400 Nm of torque to 340 HP and 450 Nm. That is quite a shot up from the current model which will probably enable it a faster 0-62 MPH time as well. Currently available model managed 0-62 sprint in 5.7 seconds while top speed was 167 mph, quarter mile run was done in 14.1 seconds with exit speed of 105.6 mph. It will also stick with the FWD and a six-speed manual gearbox giving it a chance to be better than Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport S, and they will definitely be fighting to reclaim front-wheel-drive Nurburgring lap record from its rival.