Watch The Latest Civic Type R Hit The Track In Japan
31 March 2016 - Autoblog
The latest Honda Civic Type R is very sweet forbidden fruit because the launch of the new generation Civic in the US suggests that the 306-horsepower turbocharged hot hatch might not arrive on this continent in its current form.
However, the next one should come here and could have an even more powerful version of the Ohio-made 2.0-liter engine. While North American buyers wait, Best Motoring host Keiichi Tsuchiya slips behind the Type R's wheel in this video to show us what we're missing. After the Drift King's drive, the CTR looks a little rotten.
Tsuchiya seems to fight understeer from the moment he hits the first corner of the very tight Nikko Circuit, and it doesn't appear to let up over his couple of laps. Unfortunately, this clip doesn't have English subtitles, so we can only draw conclusions from Tsuchiya's driving – unless you understand Japanese.
There could be a few explanations for the Civic Type R's performance in this video. There's still snow on the ground, so the performance tires could have trouble with grip in the cold. The track's layout also doesn't provide much opportunity to open the throttle. The tight corners really tax a vehicle's handling, and the hot hatch's front-wheel drive lap record at the Nürburgring suggests the Type R might prefer a quicker track. We also remarked on understeer during our First Drive, but it wasn't this bad.
If you're unfamiliar with Best Motoring and Tsuchiya, you're missing out. The show puts racing drivers into mostly Japanese performance cars and lets them offer their driving impressions. Tsuchiya is the star and quite an accomplished racer, one of the drivers who took a class win in a Honda NSX in the 1995 24 Hours of Le Mans. If you've missed out on these clips, prepare to waste a weekend watching the series on its YouTube channel.