A new Honda Civic Type R will be launched in 2015, company president Takanobu Ito has confirmed.
The car will be "cultivated with applications of technologies developed through the World Touring Car Championship" according to Ito, suggesting it will be powered by a turbocharged 1.6 litre engine. Honda enters the championship as a works team later this year.
Ito did not expand on details of the next Type R, but said that he had set his engineers the task if making it the fastest front wheel drive car to lap the Nurburgring.
It will initially be sold in Europe only. "It is important to offer customers there something sporty," Ito told Autocar. "This car is not about sales volume, but inspiring customers and engineers." He added that sales outside Europe would be considered at a later date.
Ito also confirmed development of a baby SUV was underway, for sale in 2013 and likely to be based on the Jazz, and that a small roadster for the Japanese market only, in the mould of the Honda Beat, would go on sale by 2015.
The new cars are part of a raft of product developments from Honda designed to push sales from just over three million cars to six million cars a year by March 2017.
"Now is the time to counter-attack," said Ito. "The goal is ambitious but achievable. We must work towards it.' "
Ito also laid out plans to develop three new hybrid systems, using one, two or three electric motors depending on vehicle type. Ito pledged world leadership in economy from the one motor system. "By improving efficiency of regenerative emery recovery systems we believe we can be number one," he said.
The two motor system will be used on mid size vehicles and be sold in the us and Japan initially. The three motor system is used in conjunction with Honda's SH-AWD technology, which forms the basis of the powertrain for the upcoming Honda NSX, Acura RLX and the next generation Honda Legend, which will go on sale in Japan in 2014.