Honda says there has never been a Type R quite like the subject of this road test: the fifth-generation Civic Type R, which might be a little more helpfully classified as the performance version of the 10th-generation Civic hatchback, itself introduced earlier this year.
In this, the 25th anniversary of the introduction of the original Japanese-market NSX Type R, Honda has introduced a customary red-badged go-faster hatchback that has turned up only a couple of years after the previous one.
It has a broadly similar front-wheel-drive mechanical make-up to the previous version and a closely related engine – all of which might suggest, on paper at least, that it hasn’t changed a great deal.
In fact, the differences between this car and the 2015 Type R are many and varied, among them an all-new platform and chassis, new suspension and steering technology, a revised transmission and a completely different interior.
Unlike any of its predecessors, this Type R is a truly global car. It has also been designed and developed from the ground up as a performance machine instead of being adapted from an existing model.