Its looks might be polarizing, but there’s no questioning the driving performance of the new 2017 Honda Civic Type R. And here’s how we know…
Back at the beginning of the month, Honda took its latest performance machine to the Nürburging Nordschleife to prove its worth. The front-wheel drive record has changed manufacturer hands a few times in the last few years since Seat’s Leon Cupra 280 cracked the eight-minute barrier at the famed German race track, but now it’s firmly back with Honda after the Civic posted a 7:43.80 lap time to take the title from Volkswagen’s Golf GTI Clubsport S.
The Type R’s time is more than three seconds quicker than that of the GTI Clubsport S’s 7:47.19, and almost seven seconds quicker than the previous generation FK2 Civic Type R around the 12.9-mile (20km) North Loop.
With 306 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque on tap from its 2.0-liter VTEC Turbo engine, the new R is definitely not short on grunt. According to Honda’s lead chassis engineer for the car, Ryuichi Kijima, higher cornering speeds at the Nürburgring were achieved through “a wider track and tires, a longer wheelbase, a new multi-link suspension in the rear and optimized aerodynamics that improve stability.” The car is also 35lb (15.8kg) lighter than its predecessor and features 38 percent more torsional rigidity.
But enough talk, what you really need to see is the VBox-verified lap, and you can check that out by hitting play above.