The 2017 Honda Civic Type R is officially the fastest front-wheel-drive production car to be timed at the Nürburgring, clocking a lap that’s 6.8sec faster than its predecessor could manage.
To see what the new car’s time advantage looks like, we’ve placed its onboard footage next to that of the old car. The differences are small but consistent, suggesting the 2017 car will offer incremental improvements in all areas of performance.
On paper, the new car betters the 2014 model with 10bhp more – it has 316bhp to the previous generation’s 306bhp – and it’s 16kg lighter. In practice it also seems that the additional power means the car’s six-speed manual gearbox is put to more work at the ‘Ring, as the engine powers to its redline faster.
The new car looks more stable at high speed too, probably partly thanks to its new aerodynamic exterior package. It seems able to transmit its power to the road more effectively as well, illustrating the capability of its limited-slip differential.
Of course you could argue that these ‘Ring lap times are irrelevant because, as so many on the internet will point out, drivers, climate, track conditions and so much more can never be exactly the same between two runs. But just watch these two flat out laps together.
Look closely and the new car’s near 7.0sec advantage, which is also 5.4sec faster than the Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport S, is clear.