Currently reading: New Honda Civic Type R smashes Nurburgring front-drive lap record
Latest Type R has 316bhp and 295lb ft of torque; new time is nearly seven seconds faster than the old car's
Sam Sheehan
2 mins read
24 April 2017

The new Honda Civic Type R has smashed the Nürburgring lap record for front-wheel-drive cars, clocking a 7min 43.8sec lap time.

We've driven the new Honda Civic Type R - read the review here

This shaves a significant 5.41sec from the previous record holder, the Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport S, and makes the new Type R 6.8sec faster around the ‘Ring than its predecessor.

The new lap record holder is described by Honda as being a development model with technical specifications representative of the final car. Like the production car, it uses a 316bhp and 295lb ft VTEC turbocharged 2.0-litre engine.

The latest model’s six-speed manual gearbox also has shorter gear ratios for more urgent performance, and the car weighs 16kg less than its predecessor, at 1366kg. No straight-line performance figures have been revealed yet, but the car will almost certainly undercut the 5.7sec 0-62mph time of the previous one.

Honda’s 10th-generation Civic structure has upped the torsional rigidity of the Type R by 16%. It also uses new multi-link rear suspension for improved stability and has a bodyshape that is claimed to offer a best-in-class performance balance for lift and drag.

Honda set the new ‘Ring record during the final phase of testing for the model, on a dry track with “optimum ambient temperature for the best tyre and powertrain performance”. The car’s only modification was a 'floating' roll cage that Honda said offered no improvements to rigidity. To compensate for the cage’s weight, the infotainment system and rear seats were removed.


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Honda Civic Type-R
Honda's new Civic Type R is powered by a 306bhp 2.0-litre turbocharged four cylinder engine

Probably the most capable front-wheel-drive car in production today, with only limited edition specials getting close

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The lead chassis engineer for the new Civic Type R, Ryuichi Kijima, said: “The cornering speed achieved in the new Type R is higher because the car features a wider track and tyres, a longer wheelbase, new multi-link suspension in the rear and optimised aerodynamics that improves stability.“

Kijima explained that this allowed drivers to attack apexes with more pace. “Drivers typically enter the corner after Metzgesfeld at around 93mph," he said. "Even at this medium-speed corner, the speed is around 6mph higher [than the previous car].”

Production of the new Civic Type R will begin at Honda UK’s plant in Swindon this summer, before going on sale in the autumn. Prices are expected to rise compared with the previous car’s £30,200.

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Marco Mapelli on his record-breaking Lamborghini Huracan Performante lap

Fastest ever Nurburgring lap times

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24 April 2017
This is pointless, if I could afford a hot hatch, it's lap time wouldn't matter a jot to me, this is a development car so maybe not representative of a car straight out of the show room, the previous fastest only had 2 seats, pointless. It's also a bit over spoilered, a bit too fast and furious, would fit in perfectly with the max power generation of the 90s.

24 April 2017
"technical specifications representative". Representative? A qualification that makes the entire exercise pretty much pointless. Unfortunately for Honda, the only aspect of the vehicle truly representative of your local dealer's road-legal car is the body, which is an unmitigated disaster.

24 April 2017
Another pointless superhatch on our congested roads to get hosed down by our high speeding fines. Woo hoo, it broke the Nurburgring record. That's useful day to day. It actually puts me off buying something like this.

Not that I am in the market for such a ridiculous spoilerfest.

24 April 2017
As pointless as the three exhaust pipes.

Why did they do that?

Also. It has too many bits stuck to the bodywork, if it was "cleaner", I'd think about getting one

24 April 2017
Richard H wrote:

Also. It has too many bits stuck to the bodywork, if it was "cleaner", I'd think about getting one

I agree entirely. There's one (non-R) round the corner from my house and I described it to my other half as looking like a Dixons HiFi.

24 April 2017
Isn't it just showing the Germans and the French that Japanese engineering is in no way inferior. This car in itself isn't so significant but look how much formula 1 R&D has filtered down into normal cars over the years. This is really another aspect of that.

24 April 2017
Honda could have spent the money giving the new Civic class leading refinement, interior quality, ride, handling etc and picked up a few car of the year awards along the way. Most buyers won't give a fig about this result apart from the handful of masochists who drive bone shaking Type Rs on our farm track quality British roads.

24 April 2017
so fast in fact that it would be nothing but a blur when it passes me by and my eyes would have the blessed relief of not actually being able to see it.

24 April 2017
That's the best comment I have ever seen on this site.

24 April 2017
I can't believe the comments on this page! Has Autocar been infested with a bus load of OAPs? Autocar has always been about ultimate handling and driving above all else and this "victory" should be applauded. It doesn't make a difference to the average car buyer but the "type" of buyers looking at hot hatches will be all over this - this is big news, bragging rights. Watch out for a new special edition Golf GTI as Wolfsburg won't like this one bit.


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