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R-4-Racing: Type R...
The 201hp cavalry of Honda's Civic

New Honda Civic Type R: a new i-VTEC indicator just to the right of the digital speedometer which is illuminated within this rev range.

New i-VTEC indicator just to the right of the digital speedometer.

APN,
6 October 2006.

Honda's all-new high-performance Civic Type R is not getting just it's world debut in Europe now, at the 2006 Paris motor show (2006 Mondial de l'Automobile, 30 September - 15 October).

It is built in Europe too. Precisely, at the Honda UK Manufacturing Ltd. (HUM) in Swindon.

New Honda Civic Type R: front side view.

Deep front spoiler with a larger air intake and triangular fog lamps.

When first deliveries begin in early 2007, the new Civic Type R will come with different levels of equipment, ranging from a fully equipped car to one that even has the rear parcel shelf removed.

The new Type R continues to be powered by the naturally-aspirated 2.0 litre DOHC i-VTEC engine with similar output to the previous generation. However, the Japanese automaker reworked the engine for greater refinement and responsiveness thanks to a new balancer shaft and a drive-by-wire throttle.

New Honda Civic Type R: side view.

6.6 second for the 0-100 km/h, up to a 235 km/h top speed.

The 201 PS maximum power output is now reached at 8,000 rpm (previously 200 PS at 7,400 rpm), with the main performance figures virtually identical to the 6.6 second 0-100 km/h time and 235 km/h top speed of the Type R in its previous incarnation. Slightly lower gearing compensates for a small increase in kerb weight.

VTEC variable valve timing and VTC variable inlet camshaft technology continue to underpin the engine architecture. Its high revving nature is retained, but the switch to high lift, long duration valve timing now takes place at a lower 5,200 rpm, and continues all the way to the 8,000 rpm red line. There is a new i-VTEC indicator just to the right of the digital speedometer which is illuminated within this rev range.

New Honda Civic Type R: engine through semi-transparent hood image.

Powered by the naturally-aspirated 2.0 litre DOHC i-VTEC engine.

The chassis of the 5-door Civic forms the basis for all 3-door models. By building on the Honda Civic Type S suspension which is fine-tuned for sharper chassis dynamics to match its sportier profile, the Type R takes those modifications on to the next level. Like the Type S, its rear track is 20 mm wider than that of the 5-door model, but otherwise damper, bush and spring characteristics are all unique to Type R.

225/40 ZR18 tyres provide added grip, while the 15 mm reduction in ride height further reduces body roll. The fuel tanks central location beneath the cabin floor lowers the centre of gravity and the bodys inertia moment, all with a firmer steering, a quicker ratio and stiffer steering box mountings for sharper responses to steering wheel input.

The Civic Type Rs body is further enhanced to get more responsive chassis dynamics. Extra strengthening has been introduced into the floor cross member just ahead of the central fuel tank, around the upper front suspension mountings, while the lower cross member just ahead of engine bay provides greater rigidity.

New Honda Civic Type R: back side view.

The body coloured tailgate rear spoiler splits the rear tailgate glass.

The overall result brings more predictable chassis characteristics than the outgoing model. At the same time, the damper settings deliver enhanced ride comfort in keeping with the increased refinement of the new Type R.

The new Type Rs assertive body look has a series of fully integrated aerodynamic parts that together with a 15 mm reduced ride height compared to 5-door and Type S models and standard seven-spoke 18 alloy wheels, are a clear indication of the cars potent nature.

The deep front spoiler incorporates a larger air intake as well as triangular fog lamps. Their shape mirrors the large exhaust tailpipes at the rear.

New Honda Civic Type R: dashboard.

Lower centre of gravity with a firmer steering and a quicker ratio.

The distinct body coloured tailgate rear spoiler - for added downforce - splits the rear tailgate glass, instead of the raised glass profile featured on Civic 5-door and Type S models.

Other identifying features are deliberately discrete: Type R logos feature on the front brake callipers and the glass panel grille of the Civic Type S is replaced with a honeycomb mesh and central red H logo.

Beyond the stainless steel door sill inserts with their Type R logo, the front seat occupants get bucket seats with large black Alcantara bolsters with red stitching and red fabric seat cushions and backs.

New Honda Civic Type R: front bucket seats.

Front bucket seats with large black Alcantara bolsters.

Two distinct rear seats repeat the same colour coordination. Common to other Civic models, the Dual Link concept fascia features in the Type R red illuminated dials set off by gun metallic switch panels on either side of the meter display. The leather covered steering wheel is black, perforated, with red stitching and a central H logo, while the matching gear shift knob with aluminium-finish has a black boot with red stitching.

Another exclusivity touch is highlighted by a plaque engraved with the cars unique serial number placed just ahead of the gear lever.

The fully equipped Civic Type R version will include curtain SRS bags, cruise control, fog lights, automatic lights and wipers and dual zone air conditioning. A navigation system with voice control functionality as well as RDS traffic monitoring is available as an option.

On the other hand, a lighter Civic Type R will be available too. The deletion of items such as the audio system, rear load cover, engine under cover and reduced noise insulation material brings weight down by 40 kg.

Like its predecessor, the new Type R will also be homologated for racing (FIA Group N and Group A), meeting a large demand from existing customers. A full range of racing parts and racing service will also be made available. Orders for racing kits and parts can be placed at JAS Motorsport (www.jasmotorsport.com) from this month, with first deliveries forecasted for February 2007.

All the range of Type R and Type S, are to be built exclusively alongside the Civic 5-door range at the Honda UK Manufacturing (HUM) plant in Swindon.

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