Honda has been busy testing the new Honda Civic Type R and spy photos have been taken again of the latest development. The car will be launched next year and from what can be seen from the photographs, there will not be a lot of changes to the production car form what was seen in the Civic Type R Concept car that was seen in spring this year.
The photos are of the car taking part in a shakedown test in Europe and it can be clearly seen that the car will have the same body kit as the one that was seen on the concept car in Geneva. The give aways are the distinctive rear wing, rear diffuser, side sills and sculpted spoilers.
It was thought that it might have been difficult for Honda to make the same impression with this car as they did in 2005 when last generation Civic hatchback caused a stir with its radical design. However, it seems like they are working hard on this model to impress.
It also has interest under the bonnet though. It will have the additional of turbo power which will replace the VTEC engine which had high revs as well as high CO2 outputs. They had to replace it with something that was more economical and greener and so there will be a 2.0 litre engine which is turbocharges and direct injected four cylinder. This should keep most customers happier.
Power outputs have not been revealed, but it seems as though it could be within the 280-300bhp range. The advanced product planner at Honda’s European R&D centre. Patrick Ponex, explained to CAR magazine that achieving high output is relatively easy but that they wanted to concentrate more on the VTEC characteristics such as the high revs, performance that is easy to control and good responses.
The car has front wheel drive and it is expected that it will manage the front axle tramp and wheel spin using electronics and traction rather that a full limited slip differential. It could even be that they will try for a lap record at the Nurburgring. It is tricky though as a Megane 275 Trophy-R managed one in 7 minutes 54.36 seconds recently.
It is expected that the finished car will not be far away. The concept appeared in Geneva and they are planning a face lifted concept car in the autumn for the Paris Motor Show. This means that it is unlikely that the finished car will appear this year, possibly at Geneva in the spring. It is thought that prices for the car will not be more than £30,000 for the standard model.
It looks like 2015 could be a good year for Honda. As well as this new Civic R appearing there will also be a return to F1 for the company. They will be working together with McLaren on the NSX Hybrid supercar.
The company has been effected by the global recession and have moved to down sized engines with an increase in customer demands for lower emissions. This means that their Type R models have not quite had the interest that they had hoped with enthusiasts being left rather disappointed. It is hoped therefore that their new sporty range of cars will give a new lease of life to the company and inject some more excitement than recent models have.