Civic Type R Pan-European launch

It’s been some time since we heard anything surrounding the 2015 Honda Civic Type R – and it appears the Japanese carmaker is well aware of this. As a result, Honda has decided to release more details regarding its hot hatch prior to it going on sale in Europe this July.

Launched at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show in March, the Civic Type R has been billed as a “race car for the road”, which may sound like marketing jargon except for the fact that a pre-production mule has lapped the Nurburgring circuit in under eight minutes – 7:50.63, to be precise.

The five-doored hatch will definitely look the part of the road-going racer as well with most, if not all, of its exterior design cues prioritising aerodynamic efficiency over outright aesthetic values. Up front, a large front bumper, replete with a mesh-type layout, helps to draw as much air as possible into the intercooler. Underneath, an almost-flat underbody and a rear diffuser help to generate additional downforce.

Also, the massive rear wing employed has been extensively tested at the Suzuka circuit, the Nürburgring Nordschleife and at the Takasu test facility, ensuring optimal amounts of downforce is present whilst maintaining a level of drag that does not hinder the car’s performance at high speed. The Civic Type R also boasts widened wheel arches to accommodate the increased track width, both front and rear.

Fashioned out of aluminium, the extensions are touted to shave weight by up to 42% should steel be employed instead. Vents surrounding the aforementioned widened front wheel arches serve as a ventilation outlet to aid cooling purposes – the same function is provided by both the large upper and lower front grilles. Said layout allows for the intake of cool air similar to that of a 4,000 square-mm grille, Honda says.

In profile, 19-inch alloy wheels, shod with specially-developed 235/35 Continental tyres, mask 350 mm front brake discs, themselves clamped down by four-piston front calipers. Lighting the road (or track) ahead gets taken of by the inclusion of LED combination headlamps with the LED DRLs – the latter features the longest lighting element ever produced by Honda. The tail lights feature the same LED combination setup.

Civic Type R Pan-European launch

Powering the 2015 Honda Civic Type R is an all-new 2.0 litre turbocharged VTEC engine with 310 PS at 6,500 rpm and 400 Nm from 2,500 to 4,500 rpm. Power goes to the front wheels via a six-speed manual transmission with 0-100 km/h taking only 5.7 seconds while top speed is quoted at 269 km/h. A limited slip differential is available as standard.

Inside, the Civic Type R features a driver-oriented cabin, suitably trimmed in a combination of black and red accents. The aggressive front bucket seats feature a black suede-like fabric material and contrasting red stitching while a flat-bottom steering wheel features thinner spokes and a red centre marker for improved drivability. In true Type R fashion, the shifter is made from machined aluminium alloy.

The intelligent Multi Information Display (i-MID) system in the instrument cluster feeds additional information to the driver by providing data on current G-forces and brake pressure along with accelerator angle. Additionally, boost pressure, water and oil temperature as well as lap and acceleration times are projected. Also included is a rev indicator above the tachometer and a display for the selected gear.

Last but not least is the introduction of the ‘+R‘ mode. Depressing said button, which lies to the side of the instrument binnacle, sharpens the car’s chassis and powertrain setup. Catered for track excursions, +R mode kills the Idle Stop system, remaps itself to provide more torque lower down, cuts assistance on its electric power steering, stiffens the adaptive dampers by 30% and loosens the Vehicle Stability Assist system.

As standard, the 2015 Honda Civic Type R is equipped with Honda’s Connect infotainment system, automatic air-conditioning and City-Brake Active system – the latter is active up to speeds of 31 km/h. Opting for the GT Pack includes a raft of aesthetic upgrades, driver conveniences and, more importantly, added safety features.

Under Honda’s Advanced Driver Assist Systems umbrella, the list includes Forward Collision Warning, Lane Departure Warning, Blind Spot Information, High Beam Support System, Cross Traffic Monitor, Traffic Sign Recognition and Intelligent Speed Limiter.

GALLERY: 2015 Honda Civic Type R in Geneva