The Honda Civic Type R may have relinquished its title as the fastest front-wheel drive production car to lap the Nurburgring (that honour now belongs to the VW Golf GTI Clubsport S), but everywhere else, it is still the car to beat.

At five iconic European circuits, the Civic Type R set out to dominate the lap times at each stop. Needless to say, the hot hatch managed to achieve that goal, five-for-five. Honda’s campaign started at Silverstone, England in April, where three-time British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) winner Matt Neal was appointed to get the ball rolling.

He managed to set a time of 2 minutes 44.45 seconds in the wet in an earlier session. Not satisfied with the result, Neal had another go when the circuit was dry, clocking in an impressive 2 minutes 31.85 seconds. One down, four to go.

Next, in early May, the team shifted its sights to the Spa-Francorchamps circuit in Belgium, home to the famous Eau Rouge section. Here, Honda Racing World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) driver Rob Huff was given the responsibility of upholding the honour of the red ‘H’. He didn’t disappoint, setting a time of 2 minutes 56.91 seconds. Two down, three to go.

Following this, Norbert Michelisz, another Honda Racing WTCC driver, was called upon to set a lap time at Italy’s historic Autodromo Nazionale Monza circuit. Behind the wheel, Michelisz took the Civic Type R to a time of 2 minutes 15.16 seconds.

For the fourth stop in Portugal at the Estoril circuit, an unfortunate accident involving Tiago Monteiro (Michelisz’s teammate), meant WTCC safety car driver Bruno Correia had to step in to set a time, returning with a record 2 minutes 4.08 seconds.

The final session took place at the Hungaroring in Hungary. Once again, Michelisz find his way behind the wheel of the Civic Type R. Over a two-day period, the Hungarian managed to set a benchmark of 2 minutes 10.85 seconds, completing the tour of Europe’s famous circuits.