Sharper mechanicals and 'fake noise' headline new Honda Civic Type R
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It might be a few years old now, but the FK8-generation Honda Civic Type R hasn't necessarily been calling in need for a grand update. Well into its life cycle it was still claiming lap records at a raft of different race tracks, with the hardcore new Renault Megane RS Trophy-R able to steal any of its track-loving thunder.
Nevertheless an update to the wild, winged Type R was inevitable — and that's exactly what Honda showed off recently at Tokyo Auto Salon 2020.
The K20C1 power-plant propelling the FK8 is unchanged; still making 228kW of power and 400Nm of torque from its turbocharged four cylinders and two litres. That power is still sent to the front wheels through a slick 6-speed manual and a helical limited-slip differential — with a dash of brake-based torque vectoring to massage grip during rapid cornering.
There are a few mechanical changes, though. That aforementioned 6-speed manual will now feature shorter throws, making quicker shifts from gear to gear possible. There's still no automatic option on the Type R, but that's to be expected.
Along with quicker shifts, drivers should also be able to stop better thanks to a new two-piece Brembo brake rotor system and beefed up brake pads. The Civic's suspension has also copped change, in the form of revisions to the dampers to improve comfort in normal driving and stiffer bushes in the rear. Changes to the front suspension are claimed to have made the steering more communicative, too.
Completing the performance updates is a larger front grille. When combined with the revised new front fascia it makes the R look a little more menacing, but the change also results in the very tangible benefit of more air being fed into the engine bay.
A new snout isn't the Civic's only visual change. The cabin gains a fuzzy Alcantara-rimmed steering wheel, and buyers also now have the option of a new colour — Boost Blue.
Last but not least (unless you're not into it, I suppose) is the Type R's new Active Sound Control system. Having clearly heard the complaints of those who thought the last Type R was too quiet, Honda have fitted the replacement model with a system that will produce more noise for those inside to enjoy — either via being pumped in or electronically via the hot hatchback's acoustics.
It's yet to be confirmed when these updates will make it to New Zealand shores, or if they'll trigger a revision to domestic pricing.